I came across an odd iOS issue earlier today – apparently the ‘Open In’ feature is limited to ten apps in its list. The Open In feature is the one that lets you choose which app to use when opening an email attachment, for instance. So, for example, if you have several PDF editing apps installed you can choose which one to open a PDF file in from Mail or Dropbox.
Earlier today I was looking to open a PDF file on my new iPad and wanted to open it in GoodReader – which has recently been updated with ‘retina display optimization’ on the new iPad. When I tapped and held on my test PDF file in the Mail app and chose Open In, I got a list of ten apps, but there was no sign of GoodReader in the list.
I initially thought it might just be an issue with the Mail app, so I tried another PDF and using Open In in the Dropbox app. Same again though – 10 apps listed and no GoodReader.
At this point I wondered a little about whether I might need to delete one of the ten apps listed in the Open In list in order to see GoodReader as an option – but that just sounded crazy to me.
Then I did a quick Google search and learned my thought was not that crazy and, more importantly, this looks like an issue that many iOS users have come across. I quickly discovered this Apple Discussion Forums thread, where lots of users are sharing their frustration on this issue.
There’s even a GoodReader FAQ item on this:
I try to use "Open In" menu in some other app to send PDF and other files to GoodReader, but I don’t see GoodReader in the list of apps
The following is valid only if you’re referring to a file type that GoodReader actually supports (like .PDF, .TXT, .ZIP, etc.)
The Open In functionality is controlled by iOS, we have no active control over it, we just declare GoodReader to be capable of accepting certain file types. iOS is known to show only a limited number (10 or so) of randomly selected apps for any given file type when you invoke the Open In action in any app. The actual maximum number of apps depends on a device type and on a version of iOS. The only way to resolve this issue is to delete some apps that you don’t need that expose themselves for a particular file type, to make way to other eligible apps.
And I found that deleting an app (a printer utility app) ‘fixed’ the issue – GoodReader showed up again in the Open In list as soon as the app was deleted. When I reinstalled that app it was put back into the Open In list but GoodReader also remained in the list – and another app was bumped from it.
I don’t see anywhere in Settings where you can choose which apps to use with Open In, or which to use with which file types. It looks like Apple needs to either get rid of the 10 app limit in the Open In list or give us a settings option to choose which apps we want to be included.
Have any of you come across this issue?