I’ve been sharing animated gifs through email as long as I can remember. Did you know you could send them to friends with an iPhone too? Here’s how.
To get started, you’ll need an iPhone running iOS 5 or later. For this example, I’ll be using an iPhone 5 with iOS 6.0.1. Apple’s iMessage will also be required.
Animated gifs can be shared by using the copy/paste technique. Simply tap and hold to copy the animated image of your choice; tap and hold again to paste the image within an iMessage text field and send it on its way.
Who can you send animated gifs to?
Sadly, you can’t share that hilarious gif to your friend’s Galaxy S III (at least not through MMS). Animated gifs on can only run within iMessage. The new messaging app comes as a default on all iPhones with iOS 5.0 or later.
Since iMessage allows several people to talk within the same group thread, the animated gif will play for everyone too. Unfortunately, even adding a single number to a group text that does not support iMessage will render the gif useless. The gif will not play out for anyone.
Reaction Gif Archive
While searching for new animated gifs, I came across the Imgur reaction gif archive. It’s an awesome place for quick access to any gif at a moment’s notice. Make sure to bookmark the site and place a shortcut on your iPhone’s homepage.
The gifs are organized by all sorts of categories ranging from disgust to boobs.
How do you store animated gifs?
Unfortunately, you can’t save any gifs you encounter online to your iPhone’s photo roll. Once saved, the gif will lose the animation and will show only a static image.
Update: as our readers have pointed out, the iPhone will save gifs and will keep their respective animations intact. The bad news is that the camera roll will not play out the animation until you send the gif through email or iMessage.
Since you can’t
store view the animated images on your iPhone, the most basic way of accessing your favorite gifs is to bookmark each in Safari. You can then organize the linked bookmarks into a custom folder.
The downside to this is that these are just links. They can be taken down at a moment’s notice or replaced by something else. It’s also a pain to organize and name every bookmark.
A second way of keeping your gifs organized is to save them to a cloud service. For this example, I’ll be using Dropbox. Once you have your favorite gifs uploaded to the cloud, you can access them through the Dropbox web app.
Note: Although there’s an official Dropbox app for the iPhone, stored gifs will not animate with it.
I’ve created a new folder in my Dropbox account and named it Reaction Gifs. I then placed a shortcut to this list on my iPhone’s Home Screen.
Where do I find new animated gifs?
If you’re a fan of reddit, you may have come across the sub r/reactiongifs. It’s a great place to find new gifs.
And, of course, there’s always Google. Type your search term like this: keyword animated gif.
Stay tuned for an upcoming tutorial of making your own animated gifs using Photoshop.