The watchOS 7 update on the Apple Watch has brought several dramatic changes to the table. Along with a few new types of training watch faces, you can now add little smart shortcuts to your Apple Watch. The watch finds shortcuts from the Shortcuts app on your phone. They are easy to add and run. For example, if you need to add your thoughts directly to Notes or send a quick message to a colleague, you can do it with just a tap.
As long as you have a few shortcuts handy on your iPhone, you can easily add shortcuts to your Apple Watch. Of course, you have to keep in mind that these shortcuts must be executable on your watch.
For the uninitiated, iOS Shortcuts is a standalone app that lets you create conditional statements. Here you need to add a trigger and the resulting action, and the app will take care of the rest.
The Shortcuts app has a few built-in shortcuts, and you can add your own to the mix. They are fun to experience. For example, we have a cool shortcut to show us photo details when we tap on a photo in our phone’s gallery. Exciting, isn’t it?
So, let’s see how to do it.
How to add shortcuts to Apple Watch
As stated before, you will already need a few shortcuts on your iPhone.
Step 1: Open a shortcut on your iPhone and tap the three-dot menu at the top.
Toggle the “Show on Apple Watch” switch. This ensures that said shortcut will appear on your watch.
2nd step: Now on your watch long press the watch face and tap Edit to push it into edit mode.
Swipe right until all complications are highlighted.
Step 4: Tap one of the complications and select Shortcuts from the menu.
At this point, the watch will display all available shortcuts. Select one of the shortcuts, and that’s about it. This shortcut will be added as a complication to your Apple Watch.
Now all you have to do is hit the shortcut to run it. That said, you don’t need to run all the shortcuts manually.
But, adding all the shortcuts as dedicated complications may not be feasible as you may not have enough space for other important complications such as ring analysis or heartbeat analysis.
Fortunately, there is a way to activate shortcuts just as easily.
Activate iOS shortcuts using the side button
The advantage of this trigger is that you can view all the shortcuts at the same time. This gives you the flexibility to choose the one that matches your needs.
But at this point, you’ll need to make sure that any shortcuts you don’t plan to use on your watch should be turned off. This will save you unnecessary scrolling.
Step 1: To access the added shortcuts, press the side button on your watch and rotate the crown until you see the shortcut options.
Now tap on one of the shortcuts to launch it. That’s it.
Add automation to Apple Watch
Unlike shortcuts, adding personal automation rules is easy. For now, Shortcuts offers a few automation routines for the Apple Watch. Not only are they fun to experiment with, but their setup is simple and easy.
Step 1: Go to the Automation tab on your phone and select a trigger.
After entering the date and time details, press the Next button.
2nd step: Tap Add action and look up Watch. You will see all the available automations. Now select one of the actions and hit Next.
At this point, you can choose to turn off the “Ask before run” toggle. Press the Done button to save the settings. All you have to do is test the automation.
We tested a few automations like the Apple Watch which ping the iPhone when it receives a message or switches to a particular watch face at a specific time. And all of them worked perfectly.
Shortcut’s automation also has a dedicated Apple Watch Workout trigger. With it, you can play a song / podcast or send messages to anyone in your contact list when it detects a workout.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t get it to play an Apple Music song when we set it up to go off when we started our workouts.
Take the smarter road
Automations and routines are the new flavors of the day. And if you have the resources, you should make the most of it, whether it’s the smartwatch on your wrist or the smart light on your porch.
That said, Shortcuts is the one-click solution for all the things you frequently do on your watch.
Last updated on July 30, 2021
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