One of the best things to happen to iOS in recent times is Shortcuts. For those unaware, Shortcuts is Apple’s take on the popular automation app, Workflow, which it acquired a year before introducing it officially in iOS 12. Essentially, Shortcuts is an app devised for use by everyone (and not just power users) that allows you to automate some of the mundane and trivial functions on your device with the help of workflows (or shortcuts, as they are called in Shortcuts). Furthermore, these shortcuts also come with support for Siri and offer deeper integration into various activities and apps (with iOS 13), which makes things even more interesting and fun. [The featured image you see below is created using the Shortcuts app. Click here to learn more about Shortcuts.]
However, much like some other restrictions that Apple has in place throughout its entire ecosystem, the Shortcuts app is no different and has its own restriction — which is that only the shortcuts you create yourself and the ones present in the Gallery can be used on the device. And besides the two types, you can not use any third-party (untrusted) shortcuts from the internet on your device. So, in this article, we take you through the process of how to use untrusted shortcuts on iOS 13.
Although some of the template shortcuts on the app help you automate your workflow on the device to a certain degree and the ability to create your own shortcuts also adds to it and provides a greater degree of flexibility altogether, there are still a lot of trivial and complex problems that either do not have a built-in shortcut on the app or are too difficult for some people to create shortcuts for themselves. This is where the concept of third-party shortcuts comes into the picture. Basically, with the growing popularity of the Shortcuts app, there are now various websites on the internet where Shortcuts (and automation) enthusiasts put up their custom shortcuts out in the public to help other people solve their problems.
While a majority of these third-party shortcuts are meant for the benefit of others, there is a slim possibility (if any) of an underlying malicious intent behind a shortcut. This is what concerns Apple about the whole situation, and looking at the company’s previous record on user privacy, it seems that their step to restrict access to third-party shortcuts is kind of justified in this situation to a certain degree. However, until you are aware of the shortcuts you download on your device and the actions that they perform in the background, you are fine with using them on your device.
Allow Untrusted Shortcuts (on iOS 13)
1. Open Settings and scroll down to Shortcuts.
And that’s it!
You should now be able to use any third-party shortcuts on your device using the Shortcuts app.
Get third-party shortcuts
When it comes to finding third-party shortcuts for your device, there are a few popular websites that you can check to get some of the best shortcut recommendations. A few of these suggestions include – MacStories Shortcuts Archive, Shortcuts Gallery, and Sharecuts. Some of the trivial operations that these websites offer a solution for using shortcuts include — open WhatsApp directly for a specific conversation, open various system settings with one click, zip and share a file, download YouTube videos, get summary for a web page, and many more.
So, if you happen to end up finding shortcuts on these websites and you come across a shortcut that interests you, here’s how you can add them to your Shortcuts app —
1. Select the shortcut that you want to add and tap on Get Shortcut to open it in the Shortcuts app.
2. In the Shortcuts app, tap on the Add Untrusted Shortcut button and the shortcut should now be added to the My Shortcuts section on the app.
Now, once you have added the shortcut, you can run it on your device in the same way you would run a built-in shortcut. Simply go to the Shortcuts app, find the shortcut under the My Shortcuts section, and tap on it to execute it. Or, alternatively, you can customize the Control Center on your device and add the Shortcuts app to the list for easier access.