||This article may require copy editing for grammar, style, cohesion, tone, or spelling. (February 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)|
|Original author(s)||Linden Tibbets, Jesse Tane |
|Initial release||7 September 2011|
|Operating system||Android 4.1 or later
iOS 7.0 or later (iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch)
|Type||Conditional statement creator, task automator, internet of things|
|Alexa rank||4,284 (May 2017)|
IFTTT is a free web-based service that people use to create chains of simple conditional statements, called applets. An applet is triggered by changes that occur within other web services such as Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest. An applet may send an e-mail message if the user tweets using a hashtag or copy a photo on Facebook to a user’s archive if someone tags a user in a photo. IFTTT is an initialism for If This Then That.
In addition to the Web-based application, IFTTT runs on iOS and Android. On February, 2015, IFTTT renamed their original application to IF, and released a new suite of apps called Do which lets users to create shortcut applications and actions. As of 2015, IFTTT users created about 20 million “recipes” each day. All of the functionalities of the Do suite of apps have since been integrated into a redesigned IFTTT app.
On December 14, 2010, Linden Tibbets, the co-founder of IFTTT, posted a blog post titled “ifttt the beginning…” on the IFTTT website, announcing the new project. The first IFTTT applications were designed and developed by Tibbets and co-founder Jesse Tane. On September 7, 2011, Tibbets announced on the official website was open.
By April 30, 2012, users had created one million tasks. In June 2012, the service entered the Internet of Things space by integrating with Belkin WeMo devices, allowing Recipes to interact with the physical world. On July 10, 2013, IFTTT released an iPhone app and later released a version for iPad and iPod touch. On April 24, 2014, IFTTT released a version for Android. By the end of 2014, the IFTTT business was valued at approximately $170 million.
On February 19, 2015, IFTTT launched three new applications. Do Button triggers an action when you press it. Do Camera automatically uploads the image to the service of your choice (Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox, etc.). Do Notes does the same as Do Camera, except with notes instead of images. As of November 2016, the four apps have been combined into one. By December 2016, the company announced a partnership with JotForm to integrate an “Applet” to create actions in other applications.
IFTTT employs the following concepts:
- Services (formerly known as channels) are the “basic building blocks of IFTTT”. They mainly describe a series of data from a certain web service such as YouTube or eBay. Services can also describe actions controlled with certain APIs, like SMS. Sometimes, they can represent information in terms of weather or stocks. Each service has a particular set of triggers and actions.
- Triggers are the “this” part of an applet. They are the items that “trigger” the action. For example, from an RSS feed, you can receive a notification based on a keyword or phrase.
- Actions are the “that” part of an applet. They are the output that results from the input of the trigger.
- Applets (formerly known as recipes) are the predicates made from Triggers and Actions. For example, if you “like” a picture in Instagram (trigger), an IFTTT app can send the photo to your Dropbox account (action).
- Ingredients are basic data available from a trigger—from the email trigger, for example; subject, body, attachment, received date, and sender’s address.
- IFTTT can automate web-application tasks, such as posting the same content on several social networks.
- Marketing professionals can use IFTTT to track mentions of companies in RSS feeds.
IFTTT has been received positively by Forbes, Time, Wired, The New York Times, and Reader’s Digest. Microsoft, another software developer, has developed a comparable product: Microsoft Flow.
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- Foley, Mary Jo (2016-05-04). “Where did Microsoft’s new Flow event-automation service come from?”. ZDNet. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2016-11-25.
Microsoft’s new alternative to IFTTT can trace its origins back to a couple of other services developed by the company’s Cloud and Enterprise group. […] ‘Microsoft Flow is a stand-alone SaaS Service that is designed for broad usage, including business users that want to automate day-to-day tasks. […]’