Introduction – Take Control of Shortcuts


Shortcuts is an app built into iOS and iPadOS that allows you to create automations, or programs, without actual code—connecting apps on your device to each other and beyond.

Shortcuts allows you to run a shortcut—a series of actions that can communicate with one another and pass data to each other as well as deliver it to you. This allows you to do anything from change to a different camera app every time you open the camera, to creating complex templates for documents and expanding them with data on the fly.

In this book, I teach you the core understanding you need, so you can build shortcuts by yourself. I also walk you through plenty of sample shortcuts, which help you understand the application of the core concepts as well as being intrinsically useful. These include Meeting Time (to create a meeting notes template and automatically turn on Do Not Disturb), a shortcut to control the noise cancelling mode of AirPods Pro, and even one to add the currently playing song to a special playlist.

As well as learning how to build shortcuts, you will also learn how to use them with web services, and discover apps with excellent automation support which can improve your workflows.

Even if you are already familiar with Shortcuts, or programming in general, there are lots of tips and tricks throughout the book to help you improve your understanding and techniques.

This book teaches you more than how to use Shortcuts—it also shows you examples of ways automation can make your life easier without adding complexity or difficulty to the tasks you do.