How to Attach Files to iPhone Emails

Attaching photo or video in iPhone email

Last Updated: Jan. 15, 2015

Attaching and sending files is one of the most common things people do with their desktop and web-based email programs. There's no button for attaching files in the iPhone's built-in Mail app, but that doesn't mean it's impossible to attach files. You just have to use some different techniques.  

Attaching Photos or Videos in Mail

While there's no obvious button for it, you can attach photos and videos to emails from within the Mail app.

This only works for photos and videos; to attach other file types, check out the next set of instructions. But if attaching a photo or video is all you need to do, follow these steps: 

  1. Begin by opening the email you want to attach the photo or video to. This could be an email you're replying to or forwarding, or a new email
  2. In the body of the email, tap and hold on the screen in the place where you want to attach the file
  3. When the copy/paste pop up menu appears, you can remove your finger from the screen
  4. Tap the arrow at the right side of the copy/paste menu
  5. Tap Insert Photo or Video
  6. The Photos app appears. Navigate through your photo albums to find the photo or video you want to attach 
  7. When you've found the right photo or video, tap it to preview it
  8. Tap Choose
  9. With that, the photo or video is attached to your email, and you can complete and send the email.

Attaching Other Kinds of Files or From Other Apps

Mail is the only app in which you can attach files by bringing up the copy/paste menu as described above.

If you want to attach files that are created or stored in other apps, there's a different process. Not every app supports this approach, but virtually any app that creates photos, videos, text documents, audio, and similar files should allow for attaching files in this way.

  1. Open the app that contains the file you want to attach
  1. Find and open the file you want to attach
  2. Tap the Share button (the square with the up arrow coming out of it; you'll often find it at the bottom center of apps, but not every app puts it there, so you'll want to look around if you don't see it)
  3. In the sharing menu that appears, tap Mail
  4. The Mail app opens with a new email. Attached to that email is the file you selected. In some cases, primarily with text-based apps like Notes or Evernote, the new email has the text of the original document copied into it, rather than attached as a separate document
  5. Complete and send the email. 

NOTE: If you've looked around the app and can't find the Share button, it's possible that the app doesn't support sharing. In that case, you may not be able to get files out of the app.

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