I've spent the past two weeks updating my iPhone's home screen setup for the XS Max and, as I shared in the latest episode of AppStories, part of the process involved gaining easier access to some of the shortcuts I use on a regular basis. While I'm not a fan of the shortcuts-only home screen approach described by CGP Grey in episode 75 of the Cortex podcast (at some point, I believe you just end up swapping app folders for shortcuts), I do like the idea of adding a couple of frequently used custom shortcuts to the home screen. And as I detailed on AppStories, I also like to use "shortcut launchers" – effectively, shortcuts to launch other shortcuts.
Search results for "shortcuts"
Since the release of Workflow in 2014, we’ve created hundreds of automations to help readers use their iOS devices more efficiently. The goal of this archive is to offer a complete catalogue of our old workflows as well as new custom shortcuts for Apple’s Shortcuts app.
Each shortcut in this archive has been created and tested by Federico and the MacStories team. Shortcuts are organized in categories, and you can jump directly to a specific category by using one of the section links below.
Total number of shortcuts in archive: 62
Last update: Oct 15, 2018
Jump to section:
- App Store
- Task Management
- Time Tracking
Share iTunes Affiliate Link
Given a link to an item copied from the iTunes Store, this shortcut lets you easily transform it into an affiliate link, which you can share with extensions.
App Release Notes
Copy the release notes for the latest version of an app shared from the App Store. By default, the shortcut searches the U.S. App Store, but you can change the country to your locale.
Save App Store Icon
Search the App Store for an app and save its icon to the Photos app.
Save App Store Screenshots
Search the App Store for an app and save screenshots from the product page to the Photos app.
Save App to Trello
Save an app from the App Store as a card in Trello. The app's icon, title, and other metadata are used to compose a rich card in Trello.
Fantastical Schedule (Multi-Platform)
View Fantastical's schedule for today using native app shortcuts for the iPhone and iPad versions of the app. The shortcut doesn't require any user interaction to choose platforms.
Time Until Important Event Location
Calculate how much time you have until an important event comes up. If you specify a location to filter important events, driving time to the selected address is also calculated by the shortcut.
View your next five calendar events in a list. The selected event will be opened in the system Calendar app. This shortcut can be used from the widget.
Pick a file from iCloud Drive and share it with other apps through extensions.
Download a file from a URL stored in the system clipboard. The downloaded file can be saved in iCloud Drive or other storage providers with a native Files interface.
Create a PDF from an item shared with the Shortcuts extension via the share sheet. The PDF is previewed with Quick Look, from where it can be saved into other locations using the share sheet.
Read the HealthKit database to find out how much you slept last night.
You can modify the shortcut to customize Siri's response based on how much time you slept.
Log your current weight in HealthKit by entering a numeric value. The shortcut can also be used from the widget.
Log your current waist circumference in HealthKit by entering a numeric value. The shortcut can also be used from the widget. By default, the shortcut converts centimeters to millimeters.
Glass of Water
Log a small glass of water in HealthKit. By default, the shortcut logs 150 milliliters of water to the Health app.
Log a cup of espresso as caffeine intake in HealthKit. By default, the shortcut logs 50 milligrams of caffeine to the Health app. The shortcut can also be used from the widget and Siri.
Check how long ago you had your last coffee based on when caffeine was last logged in HealthKit. You can use this shortcut in the widget and Siri.
Check how much water you've drunk today based on water entries logged in HealthKit. You can use this shortcut in the widget and Siri.
Share Dropbox Photo
Select an image from the photo library and upload it to Dropbox. The shortcut returns a public Dropbox link to the image that can be shared with other people.
On This Day
Search your photo library for old photos taken on this day in previous years. The shortcut can look for photos from multiple years, with multiple photos per day. If more than one photo is found, photos are resized to square and combined in a grid.
Add device frames to screenshots for iPhones (6, 7, 8, X, and XS generations in standard/Plus/Max sizes), iPad Pro (12.9"), Apple Watch S4 (44mm), MacBook Pro (Retina 13-inch), and iMac (5K).
The shortcut supports portrait and landscape orientations. If multiple screenshots are passed as input, they will be combined in a single image.
Apple Frames (iOS-only)
Add device frames to screenshots for iPhones (6, 7, 8, X, and XS generations in standard/Plus/Max sizes), iPad Pro (12.9"), and Apple Watch S4 (44mm).
The shortcut supports portrait and landscape orientations. If multiple screenshots are passed as input, they will be combined in a single image.
Create a round avatar based on someone's Twitter profile picture. To run this shortcut, save a profile image from Twitter first.
Combine multiple images into a single image. The shortcut supports images passed as input via the extension as well as picking images manually from the photo library.
Share Clipboard Image
Share an image from the system clipboard with app extensions. The shortcut supports both images and photo media contained in the clipboard.
Live Photo to GIF
Convert a Live Photo to an animated GIF and preview it in Quick Look. The GIF can be saved to the Photos app directly from the preview.
Image to Ulysses Sheet
Add an image to an existing sheet in Ulysses. Images can be shared via the share sheet or picked manually in the Shortcuts app.
A mail merge shortcut that supports multiple variables for email addresses and a second piece of information for each recipient. Each email address is automatically paired with the corresponding variable in the second group. Supports customizable message and subject templates.
Video Speed Up
Speed up a native video player in Safari choosing from a list of speed presets.
Enable Picture in Picture mode for a native video player in Safari. Only works on iPad.
Full Screen Video
Enable full-screen mode for a native video player in Safari.
Encode to Audio and Share
Encode the file passed to the shortcut as audio and apply custom metadata to it such as artwork, artist name, and album. The audio file is then shared with extensions.
Share the song you're listening to on Twitter. The shortcut shares the song's name, artist, and artwork.
Get the title of the currently playing song and search for its lyrics on Google.
Link to 2Do
Save a link from the clipboard or shared via the extension to 2Do as a new task. You can pick from multiple lists and optionally define a tag to be automatically applied to the new task. The original link is embedded in the task as a 'Visit URL' action.
Search Reminders For...
Search your Reminders' note fields for a specific text query. By default, the search query is chosen from a list of pre-assembled options.
Append to Clipboard
Get text from the share sheet and append it to the system clipboard as a new line.
Spreadsheet to Markdown Table
Convert a spreadsheet to a MultiMarkdown table. For the best experience, select a table in Numbers, copy cells, then run the shortcut.
Publish to WordPress
Publish a Markdown post to WordPress via the Shortcuts action extension. The shortcut can extract the h1 Markdown header from a post and use it as title. Optionally, you can publish both standard and "linked list" post types by adding a custom field supported by your WordPress installation.
Safari Markdown Selection
Convert a rich text selection from a Safari webpage to Markdown and copy the plain text to the clipboard. The shortcut needs to run as an extension in Safari.
Copy Blank Characters
Generate a string of invisible characters based on the Braille Pattern Blank Unicode character (U+2800). This is a workaround to create shortcuts with invisible names on the iOS home screen. The shortcut lets you choose how many times you'd like to repeat the blank character to avoid issues with multiple shortcuts having the same name.
Start Toggl Timer
Start a new timer in your Toggl account. The timer can be assigned a specific description, task, and tag using variables.
Prepare Toggl Template
This shortcut extracts a project ID and task ID from a project in your Toggl account. These IDs are needed to configure shortcuts that start timers. To access your Toggl account over the API, enter your email:password combination below. The shortcut communicates directly with the Toggl API.
This shortcut returns details for any currently running timer in your Toggl account.
This shortcut stops any currently running timer in your Toggl account.
Save to Evernote and Share
Save any file shared with the Shortcuts extension to Evernote as a new note. At the end of the shortcut, an Evernote link to the note is copied to the clipboard.
Get Images from Webpage
Count the number of images contained in the current Safari webpage. This shortcut can run in Safari and Safari View Controller from the share sheet.
Append Link to Evernote
Append URLs shared with the Shortcuts extension (or stored in the clipboard) to an existing note in Evernote.
Share Long URL
Expand a short URL into the long, unfurled version. Optionally, you can share a textshot associated with the URL by picking a photo from the library.
Append Links to Evernote
Append a link to an existing note in Evernote. The link is either passed to the Shortcuts extension or read from the clipboard.
Linked Post → Drafts 5
Create a template for a linked post to an article in Drafts 5. The text selection from a Safari webpage is used as a Markdown blockquote. The original title, author name, and URL of the webpage are also preserved in the note.
Get the latest Apple news from one of your favorite tech blogs. Headlines can be previewed in Siri or the widget.
Search your last 50 unread Pocket items for a particular search query, which you can type directly in the shortcut. The result you pick will be opened in Safari.
Extract Image Links from Webpage
Given a selection in Safari, the shortcut finds all image links contained in the selected portion of the page and offers to open them as new tabs. Selected image links are also copied to the clipboard.
Open in Twitter Apps
Open a Twitter link in Tweetbot, Twitterrific, or the official Twitter app. Both profile links and individual tweets are supported. The shortcut can be run inside the widget.
Clip to Yoink
Save the contents of the system clipboard to Yoink. Can be used from the Shortcuts app, the extension, the widget, or Siri.
Copy Latest from Yoink
Copy the most recent item saved in the Yoink app. Can be used from the Shortcuts app, the extension, the widget, or Siri.
Start your workday by turning on a HomeKit switch, setting Hue lights to a focus mode, and waking up your Mac using the 'Remote for Mac' app.
Enable Do Not Disturb choosing from three different types of expiration times: until manually turned off, until a calendar event is over, or until a specific time.
Fantastical was updated last week to version 2.10, which brought support for some of the key features of iOS 12 and watchOS 5 – namely Siri shortcuts and complications for the Infograph watch faces. I want to highlight some of the changes in this release and how they fit my usage of Reminders as my main task management system.
Promised earlier this year, the Philips Hue app now supports Siri Shortcuts allowing users to trigger scenes created in the app.
The Hue app received a major update earlier this year, which significantly improved the creation of scenes. Users can pick from pre-built scenes created by designers to evoke a particular mood or create their own using photos or a color picker to control the color and brightness of a group of Hue bulbs.
With the new Siri Shortcut support, those scenes can be triggered using Siri and incorporated as actions in custom shortcuts using Apple’s Shortcuts app. I have several Hue bulbs in my studio. They aren’t the kind that supports a wide range of colors, but I can adjust the brightness and warmth of each bulb. To test the Hue's new shortcut functionality, I created a scene called Focus Mode that turns the brightness up to 100% with a cool blue cast.
After using the scene, the Siri & Search section of the Settings app suggested I add my new scene as a Siri shortcut, which is how many apps approach Siri shortcuts. Frequently-used scenes will also be suggested on the lock screen, Siri watch face, and search.
There’s an alternate, better route to setting up a Hue shortcut though. Inside the app, if you tap on a scene, a pencil icon appears in the corner. Tapping on it gives you the option to add the scene to Siri, as well as edit, rename, or delete it. Other developers have added the ability to add Siri shortcuts in their app’s settings, but I especially like Hue’s approach. If you’re in the Hue app creating a scene, that’s the natural spot to add it as a Siri shortcut too.
With a Hue Siri shortcut in place, you can also use it as an action in custom shortcuts you create in Apple’s Shortcuts app. I set up a simple shortcut that turns on the lights in my studio and enables a smart electrical outlet that controls an air filter. Now, as I finish my morning coffee, I can say ‘Hey Siri, start Workday’ and the lights and filter come on as I head downstairs. The same sort of shortcut can be created to control lights using Shortcuts’ HomeKit support added with iOS 12, but having similar functionality built into the Hue app is a useful alternative if that’s where you’ve set up your scenes.
The Hue app is available as a free download on the App Store.
I'm in the process of creating a complete archive of every workflow I ever created for the Workflow app and updating each one for Shortcuts. As I was browsing through my old Workflow articles, I came across an interesting workflow I created in early 2015 called Photo Flashbacks. The main idea was simple enough: given Workflow's ability to read the contents of the photo library, the workflow would filter a photo taken on the same day in previous years and preview it with Quick Look. That seemed like a fun project that I could pick up again and improve for the Shortcuts app.
Following a major update that introduced a redesigned Now Playing screen, extensive shortcut support, and standalone Watch playback, Marco Arment has brought a variety of enhancements and fixes to version 5.0.2 of Overcast, released earlier today.
Overcast 5.0.2 has added new round complications for the Infograph faces on the new Apple Watch; these act as launchers that simply open the Overcast app on the Watch, which I find convenient enough. Furthermore, you can reduce the amount of haptics used by the app to communicate certain actions (I love haptic feedback in Overcast, so this option isn't for me), and there are new options for configuring how the 'Send to Watch' feature works.
Most of all though, I'm interested in the new Siri shortcuts supported by Overcast. The app now offers shortcuts to activate or cancel the sleep timer, as well as two shortcuts to copy the current episode's standard or timestamped link to the clipboard. The ability to quickly generate an Overcast link for the episode you're listening to is a perfect use case for shortcuts: it removes repetitive interactions with the app and, with the tap of a button or Siri phrase, it gives you a link you can instantly share with others.
For the occasion, I've turned my original Overcast Chapters widget shortcut into Overcast Controls, an enhanced widget that, besides chapter navigation, now uses the app's new shortcuts to let you copy episode links too. You can download it below.
Update 10/10: A newer version of this shortcut, which can apply frames to screenshots taken on multiple Apple devices, is available here.
MacStories readers may be familiar with the way I like to present iPhone screenshots in app reviews and other stories – particularly for "hero" images, such as the one above, I want my screenshots to be contained in device frames that resemble official marketing images from Apple. They're prettier, and they do a better job at communicating what an app looks like on an actual device. I could create these images manually using apps like Affinity Photo and Pixelmator on iOS, but the process would be slow, boring, and time-consuming. Instead, for years now I've been using Workflow and its 'Overlay Image' action to get this done in an automated fashion.
With Shortcuts and the new iPhone XS and XS Max, it was time for an update to my old workflow. While I could have kept using the same iPhone X assets for the XS given their physical resemblance, I upgraded to a XS Max this year, which meant that my screenshots wouldn't have fit the old device frames natively anyway. Fortunately, Apple uploaded official marketing assets for the XS and XS Max a couple of days ago, so with the help of my girlfriend (who's better at Photoshop than I am) I was able to update my workflow for the new devices and add a few extra options in the process as well.
I previously covered HomeCam, a HomeKit utility by indie developer Aaron Pearce, as a superior way to watch live video streams from multiple HomeKit cameras. In addition to a clean design and straightforward approach (your cameras are displayed in a grid), what set HomeCam apart was the ability to view information from other HomeKit accessories located in the same room of a camera and control nearby lights without leaving the camera UI. Compared to Apple's approach to opening cameras in the clunky Home app, HomeCam is a nimble, must-have utility for anyone who owns multiple HomeKit cameras and wants to tune into their video feeds quickly. With the release of iOS 12, HomeCam is gaining one of the most impressive and useful implementations of Siri shortcuts I've seen on the platform yet.