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Home / Tips and Tricks / Siri gets a redesign and lots of new features in iOS 14. Here’s everything you need to know

Siri gets a redesign and lots of new features in iOS 14. Here’s everything you need to know


Jason Cipriani / CNET

Apple’s latest iPhone ($ 699 on Amazon) operating system, iOS 1

4, is now available for download, and is filled with useful new features to help you do things faster and easier. In particular, the Shortcuts app sees a major upgrade in the new operating system, with more options for automating tasks so you can get your phone to do what you need without touching a muscle.

This is how the new shortcut feature works so you can get started after installing iOS 14 on your iPhone.

What is the shortcut app?

Siri Shortcuts is an app that allows you to automate certain tasks or sequences of tasks that you can trigger with a tap or Siri voice command. If you know you want to silence your phone for 30 minutes a day while reading, for example, you can create a shortcut, so all you have to say is “Siri, Do not disturb timer” (or whichever command you prefer). Or you may want to set a shortcut so that Siri automatically lowers the screen brightness and turns off location services to save battery power when the phone reaches a certain battery level.

Apple introduced shortcuts in iOS 12. The app is included by default and is easy to get started with. In iOS 14, open the app, tap the Automation tab at the bottom, and tap Create personal automation. You can also set up automations that work for everyone in your home.

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What’s new with iOS 14 shortcuts?

In the past, you may have had to jump into the shortcut app to complete a task, shortcut engineer Daniel Hsu said during a WWDC session in June about new features. In iOS 14, shortcuts run seamlessly in the background and only prompt you if you need to enter any information. For example, if you have a shortcut for calculating tips, it will prompt you to enter the bill.

New folders make it easier to find and keep track of shortcuts. And you can finally use the shortcut app on one Apple Watch with WatchOS 7also.

iOS 14 also has more options for automating tasks, so you can run actions based on triggers such as time of day, arrival at a location or when opening an app. You can set a shortcut so that if you open a journaling app, for example, your phone automatically goes into Do Not Disturb mode and starts your writing playlist from Apple Music.

With the new operating system, you can trigger shortcuts with more actions, such as opening an email or message, closing an app, or connecting your phone to its charger. It also supports more automated shortcuts that do not require any action from you, such as giving you a weather report and starting a playlist at a certain time in the morning or turning off apps when the phone is in low power mode. You can customize your shortcuts (automated or otherwise) just the way you want from the app.

You can find suggestions for things to automate in the Gallery tab in the shortcut app and also check out our list of 10 best iOS shortcuts and how they work too little inspiration.

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