Apple's Shortcuts Beta App Gains iCloud Syncing, Other New Features

Apple's Shortcuts app has been in beta testing and available to developers since July, and over the course of the beta testing period, Apple has been slowly adding new features through Shortcuts beta updates.

The latest beta, number four, is a significant update that introduces iCloud syncing for Shortcuts for the first time. Prior to today's beta, Shortcuts created on one device wouldn't sync to another, an issue that's now been solved.

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According to the update's release notes, Apple has also fixed issues that prevented Shortcuts that change system settings, access the clipboard, or use current location from working. Shortcuts that include Health actions are also now able to open the Shortcuts app when run from Siri, something that wasn't available before.

MacStories has dug into the new beta and says that in addition to these changes, there have been major improvements to dictating text.


For those unfamiliar with Shortcuts, it's a new Siri feature that lets you create multi-step shortcuts using first and third-party apps that can be activated by Siri voice command. So, for example, you can create a shortcut to do something like turn on the thermostat at home using the Nest app, text your roommate that you're on the way with Messages, and open up the Maps app with directions home all with a single "I'm going home" Siri command.

Shortcuts are deeply customizable, with third-party apps able to expose a series of quick actions to Siri that can be incorporated into your Shortcuts recipes.


Prior to releasing the Shortcuts app to the public, Apple plans to add other features, such as the ability to share shortcut links and a more expansive list of actions.

Shortcuts will be released when iOS 12 sees its official launch. Until then, the Shortcuts app is limited to developers.

Related Forum: iOS 12

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Top Rated Comments

nerfjames Avatar
75 months ago
This update now lets you send Messages without user interaction with the new “Shown When Run” toggle, which can be turned off.

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Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nitramluap Avatar
75 months ago
Wake me up when they integrate HomeKit sensors and commands...
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
barkomatic Avatar
75 months ago
This sounds like a pretty exciting app and I'm eager to try it out.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BWhaler Avatar
75 months ago
I can’t wait for shortcuts, it feels like old school apple which made great tools to empower the rest of us.

Dare I say, all of MacOS and iOS this year is starting to feel like old school apple. Except pushing out FaceTime, which is the new, bad Apple.

I am hopeful that Apple has seen the error of their ways. Now let’s see if they can make great laptops with great keyboards again in 2019. That gives them enough time to fix the trainwreck bad Mac lineup.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KrispE00 Avatar
75 months ago
I bet this is delayed at least until 12.1 update.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)