Apple’s Best iOS 12 Shortcuts 

Apple’s Best iOS 12 Shortcuts 

Fresh off the official launch of iOS 12 and the grand renaming debut of Apple’s Shortcuts app — I asked people for their favourite Shortcuts. In no particular order, here are the best I’ve seen.

“Get directions to calendar events today (launching Google Maps)” and “Easy addition of medical and other appointments to both personal and work calendars with location and travel time”

Though said person didn’t spell out how they created either shortcut, I think I have an inkling for both. The first looks something like this:

ImageScreenshot: David Murphy

Obviously, you can customise it as you see fit to pull in whatever calendar you want (or selecting from a list when you open the shortcut), as well as whatever mapping application you want (and how you want to get to an appointment). Note that this shortcut only works if you’ve filled out the location for your calendar events. If you haven’t, it’ll be tricky for your iPhone to read your mind for directions.

As for the second shortcut, here’s my quick stab at that one. It’s pretty easy — just select the “Add New Event” parameter and pick “Ask When Run” in the input field for any details you don’t always want to use.

ImageScreenshot: David Murphy

Then, make another “Add New Event” shortcut below the first one. For all the text fields you’re planning to use for the first one — which is probably all of them — tap on the field in the second shortcut and have it refer back to whatever you entered in the first. That’ll look something like this (confusing as the references might look):

ImageScreenshot: David Murphy

Now, whatever you enter once will get duplicated to both calendars. Ta da.

“I created a shortcut for spotify that allows me to jump to one of the following options instantly:
-spotify search page
-my daily mixes
-my discovery page
-a few of my favourite playlists
These actions now take exactly two clicks, the first is pressing the shortcut widget in my today view, the second is selecting where I want to go. Saves a few clicks and some scrolling. nothing crazy.”

This one seems self-explanatory at first, but it’s a bit tricky since there’s no Spotify integration in Shortcuts as of when I wrote this article. I believe Andrew is doing a trick like this, where his list actually pulls up URLs for the specific pages or playlists he wants to visit:

ImageReddit” loading=”lazy” > Photo: Reddit

I haven’t tried this one myself, so YMMV. However, here’s another great list of Spotify shortcuts you can try, and here’s a second one, which might get you closer to what you’re looking for.

“[I also made] one called ‘Sexy time’ that dims the lights, dims the phone brightness, turns on DND and starts a playlist on the bedroom speakers.”Techsticles

Great Kinja name. Very fitting. This one was fun. The commands are simple, but you have to remember to play the music that you “get” from a playlist. Also, I gave you a six-minute window for sexy time, after which your device turns off Do Not Disturb mode (and your epic soundtrack).

ImageScreenshot: David Murphy
ImageScreenshot: David Murphy

“I created an Easy Button. I set up multiple shortcuts for different times and locations that I am at daily and want to enable or disable things. Then I set up a shortcut that runs the correct one based on the time and location.”

Oh god. I have a vague idea of how you might be getting this to work, but I’d love to see screenshots of your shortcut. Could you pass some along? I’ll gladly update this article with the details. Otherwise, here’s my quick take: I think you’re nested “If” commands to compare your inputs — the time and your location — to set values. As different variables match, depending on where you are and what time it is, you’ve set up the output to trigger different shortcuts. Right?

These are all the major shortcuts I saw in the comments to my post. If you have any others you’ve been working on, drop them in to the comments to this post, and I’ll take a look! And if you need some inspiration to get started with Shortcuts, here are a few helpful resources (and some shortcuts to try):


  • The best one I’ve made so far, “Hey Siri, Headed Home”.
    Generates a Text to my Partner, calculates the time to drive home with traffic and send a text saying “Finished work, I’ll be home in (insert time) see you soon”. Plus starts playing my playlist from Apple Music in my car for the drive home.

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