Saving email attachments on iPhone and iPadSource: Bryan M. Wolfe/iMore

You receive an email with a file attached to it, maybe a spreadsheet or presentation, a PDF, or plain text. You don't just want to open it in an app, though. You want to save it somewhere you can remember and get to whenever you need to and from any of your devices. That's where attachment saving comes in. With it, you can save any attachment you receive to any online storage service you use, including iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive. Then, you can access whenever you want, from wherever you want.

How to save email attachments to iCloud on iPhone and iPad

Saving email attachments to iCloud Drive is easy because iCloud built right into iOS.

  1. Launch Mail from your Home screen.
  2. Choose the email that contains the attachment.
  3. Tap on the attachment attachment to bring up the Share sheet.

    To save email attachments, launch the Mail app, then choose the email with the attachment. Tap on the attachment.Source: iMore

  4. Tap the share sheet button on the bottom left of the page. It's a square with an upward arrow.
  5. Choose Save to Files.
  6. Tap iCloud Drive to save to iCloud Drive or tap On My iPhone to save it directly to your phone.
  7. Tap Save on the top right of your screen.

    To save email attachments to iCloud, tap the Share sheet button, then choose Save to Files. From there, choose your iCloud Drive or On My Phone. Select Save.Source: iMore

How to save email attachments to Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive or enterprise storage on iPhone or iPad

Thanks to document provider extensions, you can also save to Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and other storage services.

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To save attachments to your storage provider, you first have to download the host app from the App Store.

Once you've downloaded the app, launch it, and log into your account. Then you can start saving attachments to the respective accounts. How you do it can vary by provider, however.

Saving to Dropbox

  1. Launch Mail from your Home screen.
  2. Choose the email that contains the attachment.
  3. Tap on the attachment attachment to bring up the Share sheet.

    To save email attachments, launch the Mail app, then choose the email with the attachment. Tap on the attachment.Source: iMore

  4. Choose Save to Dropbox.
  5. Select the folder to save your file to or Tap Choose a Folder You can't create a new folder on the fly using the Apple Share sheet, unfortunately.
  6. Tap Save.

    To save your attachment to Dropbox, select Save to Dropbox from the Share sheet, then choose the folder to have your file. You can tap Choose a Folder to select a different location. Then tap Save.Source: iMore

Saving to Google Drive

Before saving a file to Google Drive using the Share sheet for the first time, you should add the Google Drive extension, which makes the process much more comfortable.

  1. Launch Mail from your Home screen.
  2. Choose the email that contains the attachment.
  3. Tap on the attachment attachment to bring up the Share sheet.

    To save email attachments, launch the Mail app, then choose the email with the attachment. Tap on the attachment.Source: iMore

  4. Tap the More icon by scrolling right-to-left on the second row of icons in the Share Sheet.
  5. Choose Edit at the top right.
  6. Tap the green + to the left of Google Drive under Suggestions.
  7. Choose Done at the top right.
  8. Select Done at the top left now.

    To save to Google Drive, tap the more icon, then choose Edit. Tap the plus icon to the left of Google Drive under Suggestions. Choose Done and Done. Source: iMore

  9. Tap the (Google) Drive icon in the Share sheet. It should be in the second row of icons.
  10. Log into your Google account, if necessary.
  11. Choose Select Folder at the bottom.
  12. Select the location to save the file.

    To save to Google Drive, tap the Google Drive icon in the Share sheet. Log into your Google account, if necessary. Choose Select folder at the bottom, then select the location where you want to save the fileSource: iMore

  13. Choose Save here at the bottom right to save your image to Google Drive.
  14. Finally, select Upload at the top right.

    To save your attachment to Google Drive, choose Save Here. Then select UploadSource: iMore

As you can see, saving an attachment to Google Drive requires many more steps than saving to iCloud.

Saving to OneDrive

  1. Launch Mail from your Home screen.
  2. Choose the email that contains the attachment.
  3. Tap on the attachment attachment to bring up the Share sheet.

    To save email attachments, launch the Mail app, then choose the email with the attachment. Tap on the attachment.Source: iMore

  4. Tap the More icon by scrolling right-to-left on the second row of icons in the Share Sheet.
  5. Choose Edit at the top right.
  6. Tap the green + to the left of OneDrive under Suggestions.
  7. Choose Done twice.

    To save to OneDrive, tap the More icon, then choose Edit. Tap the green plus icon to the left of OneDrive under Suggestions. Choose Done twice. Source: iMore

  8. Tap the One Drive icon in the Share sheet. It should be in the second row of icons, then follow the directions.

Not sure how to add attachments? Are you looking to take advantage of the Files app on iPhone and iPad? Find out here!

Questions?

Let us know in the comments below!

Updated June 2020: Updated steps and screenshots for iOS 13.

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