How to quickly delete or mark e-mail as unread in iOS 8

iPhoneMailIconXWhen browsing through and managing your e-mail, you will likely regularly use three tasks: flagging messages, deleting unwanted ones, and then marking any that you would like to revisit later as unread. This last option is especially useful if you access your e-mail on multiple devices. In the Mail app in iOS, you can do these tasks using the toolbar at the bottom of an opened e-mail message, but there are a couple of additional approaches that can be far more convenient.

These are done on the main message list, where you can swipe a message briefly to the left or right to reveal management options. When doing so to the right, you will see a blue square that allows you to mark the message as unread, and to the left will show options for deleting, flagging, and “more” for less common tasks like moving the message, or directly replying or forwarding without viewing its contents.

Even though swiping is convenient, there is an even quicker way to either delete a message or mark it as unread. This involves you dragging the message completely to the right or left, as opposed to just briefly swiping either left or right. When you do this, you will see the standard “swipe” options appear, but they will then expand across the message title as you drag. Depending on the direction, this will result in one of two functions occurring: if you dragged to the right, then Mail will toggle between marking the message as read and unread, and if you do so to the left, then Mail will delete the message.

While sliding your finger and briefly swiping to then tap one of the revealed options might seem a trivial difference, when managing many e-mails in the small and relatively simple list in iOS, the slight speed advantage that these offer may make your task go a bit quicker.

Mail quick actions in OS X

Swiping briefly to the left will reveal the More, Flag, and Trash options, but dragging the message completely to the left will delete the message in one step. The same goes for marking as unread in the opposite direction.

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