September 17, 2018
Siri shortcuts may turn out to be one of the most impactful new features in iOS 12.
In short they allow users to assign a spoken phrase of their choosing to quickly take a specific action in an app.
It’s easy to think of shortcuts which could be added to an app. To get you started here are some examples.
- Quickly start a booking for the user’s favourite restaurant.
Hotel chain app:
- Show directions back to the hotel the user is staying at.
Fast food app:
- Order a favourite Friday night dinner from the user’s top takeaway.
- Check how long is left before the order arrives.
Shortcuts become available when an app tells iOS that the user has just taken a specific action. The user can then opt to define their own spoken phrase to trigger that action in the future. Additionally iOS can also proactively suggest the action to you at an appropriate point - e.g. every Friday night when you normally order a takeaway.
If you have an app take a moment to think how Shortcuts could be useful to your users. Shortcuts will be a feature users expect in apps and use apps without them less. As the new big thing in iOS land getting in early with implementing these is a must.