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Apple introduced “Siri Shortcuts” back in iOS 12, which was released in 2023. Many changes have been made in the meantime and for the better. What was initially limited to Siri is now available as a separate and native app called Shortcuts. If you’re a power user looking to learn how to create Siri Shortcuts on your iPhone or iPad, know that you’ve come to the right place.
In this short guide, we present you with two different ways to create Siri Shortcuts on your iPhone or iPad: by installing existing ones or creating your own (from scratch). Here’s everything you need to know.1. Use the Shortcuts Gallery
Via the Shortcuts app (which comes pre-installed), you can access a large number of Siri shortcuts. This part of the Shortcuts app is called “Gallery.” Follow these directions to use it.
1. When you launch the Shortcuts app, it will open the “My Shortcuts” tab. You can access the Gallery section via the icon at the bottom of the screen.
2. The Shortcuts Gallery contains a collection of ready-made shortcuts sorted into convenient categories. When you find one you like, select it (to open its overview), then tap on the “Add Shortcut” button.
3. When you open your Library, you will find the new shortcut. Tap on the three dots in the top-right corner of the shortcut to see the actions that your shortcut will perform. You can make any changes you wish to modify the shortcut to your own needs.
Finally, keep in mind that you can trigger these shortcuts by tapping on their icons/thumbnails. Alternatively, you can say the name of the shortcut you want to trigger (using Siri, of course). Therefore, these are no longer just limited to Siri, which is certainly a good thing.2. Create Your Own Siri Shortcuts
If you can’t find a shortcut in the Shortcuts Gallery that does what you’re looking for, you can build your own from scratch. Here’s how.
1. Once again, launch the Shortcuts app. Make sure to tap on “My Shortcuts.”
2. Tap on the “+” icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
3. Take a look at the bottom of the screen where you’ll find an empty field asking you to search for apps and actions. Make sure to tap on it and search for a preferred action/app.
5. Tap the action to add it to your shortcut and continue until you have added all the actions you require. You can press and hold on any action to drag it up or down within the shortcut.
6. To test your shortcut, tap the “Play” icon in the bottom-right corner.
7. When you complete your shortcut, tap “Next” (in the top-right corner). Provide a name and hit Done to save your shortcut to your library.
If you’re struggling to create a shortcut that works the way you would expect, try looking in the Gallery for another shortcut that performs a similar action. You can then look at the list of actions to see how it works.Conclusion
You’re never going to be able to customize an iPhone in the same way that you can customize an Android device. But with the introduction of Siri Shortcuts, iPhone users now have a much greater level of control over managing regular tasks. They won’t appeal to everyone, but shortcuts can be a real timesaver for power users.
And speaking of how to create Siri shortcuts on your iPhone, make sure to also learn how to install third-party Siri shortcuts. Lastly, here’s how to use Siri shortcuts on Apple Watch as well.
Isaac is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience covering the latest technological innovations. Mainly focused on Apple-related software and hardware systems, his aspiration is to explore all the ways today’s digital world intertwines with our everyday life.
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If used smartly, “Siri Shortcut” can prove to be a game changer in many ways. For instance, you can use custom Apple News shortcuts to instantly access Apple News history, check out all of your saved stories, quickly head into the latest articles of your favorite site and more.
Siri keeps an eye on your News app usage and provides suggestions accordingly. And if you think that a phrase can come in handy in enhancing your experience, you can create a shortcut for that. Then after, your personalized command will allow you to access your favorite stories. Read on to discover how Siri Shortcuts for Apple News work.
Sticky Note: Siri offers suggestions based on your usage and interest. So for instance, if you want to see your saved stories using the virtual assistant, make sure you have saved articles. Else, it won’t offer the related suggestions.The Most of Siri Shortcuts For Apple News
Access All Of Your Saved Apple News Articles
Step #1. Open Settings app on your device → Now, scroll down and tap on News → Next, tap on Siri & Search.
Step #2. Next up, tap on Shortcuts.
Step #3. On this screen, you should see a ton of suggestions for shortcuts based on your usage. Now, the real magic begins:
Find the “see my saved stories” suggestion and tap on it
Next, hit the red button to record the phrase. Finally, tap on Done to confirm
Going forward, whenever you want to view your saved stories, invoke Siri and speak the phrase and you are ready to go! Told you it’s pretty straightforward, didn’t I?
View Apple News History Using Siri Shortcuts
Look for History and tap on it
Up next, you need to record a personalized phrase. To do so, hit the red button and speak the phrase
Make sure to tap on Done at the top right to finish
You can now view your history just by invoking Siri and speaking the phrase.
Quickly Access the Stories of Specific Sites with Siri Shortcut
If you want to instantly access the stories from your favorite site, look for the “See stories from iGeeksBlog (site name) and tap on it → Now, tap on the record button and speak the phrase. Then, tap on Done to confirm
From now onwards, whenever you wish to get the articles of this site, bring the personal assistant into action and say the phrase.
See Stories for Specific Topics Using Siri Shortcuts
Find the “See stories about Technology (topic name)” → Now, tap on the red button and record the phrase → Make sure to tap on Done to finish
From now on, you can activate the virtual assistant and speak the phrase to view the stories from particular topics.
See Stories from Today Using Siri Shortcuts
Siri Shortcuts will also let you access the stories from Today.
To get it done, find the “See stories from Today” and tap on it → Tap on the red button and speak the phrase → Tap on Done to finish.
Now, all you need to do to view the articles from today is to activate Siri and speak the phrase. This is just the tip of the iceberg. So, explore the entire suggestions and create smart shortcuts.
Manage/Edit Siri Shortcuts for Apple News
Managing Apple News’ Siri Shortcuts is pretty simple. Based on your need, you can re-record your phrase, and even remove the ones that are no longer needed.
Step #1. Open Settings app on your device → tap on News.
Step #2. Now, tap on Siri & Search.
Step #3. From this Screen, you can disable/enable Siri & Suggestions for News, Allow or Disallow information from Apple News to show in Lock Screen, and turn off/on Siri to find content in other apps.
If you want to make changes in any shortcuts, tap on Shortcuts then tap on Edit.
Delete A Specific News Siri Shortcut
To remove a shortcut, Settings app on your device → tap on News → tap on Siri & Search → tap on Shortcuts → tap on Edit at the top right. Then, tap on the red button to the left of the specific phrase under My News Shortcuts. Next, hit Delete.
Re-record Apple News Phrase for Siri Shortcut
If you want to re-record any News shortcut, tap on the specific one under My News Shortcuts section. Now, tap on Re-Record Phrase, speak any phrase. Then, tap on Done to finish
That’s all, mate!
So, that’s how you can make the most of hacks to enhance your experience. Again, Siri provides suggestions based on your usage and what you like reading. Therefore, use the News app and explore everything that catches your eyes. Then, dive into the shortcuts settings to find out the recommendations.
And if you think that a personalized phrase can make your task easier, record a phrase and use it to simplify your experience. That’s how it works.
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The founder of iGeeksBlog, Dhvanesh, is an Apple aficionado, who cannot stand even a slight innuendo about Apple products. He dons the cap of editor-in-chief to make sure that articles match the quality standard before they are published.
For most users, the ‘Other’ iOS storage category—reported after connecting an iOS device to desktop iTunes—is something of a mystery. ‘Other’ storage starts at one to five percent of total device capacity but can quickly creep in to a few gigabytes.
This post will unravel the mysteries behind ‘Other’ iOS storage, explain what it’s used for, how iOS manages it and what you can do to decrease it.Can I see how much space is lost to ‘Other’ storage?
Yes, you can.
iTunes will scan what’s on the device and display its storage graphically at the bottom of the window. Mouse over the yellow section of the graph to see how much space is taken up by ‘Other’ storage.
Sadly, iOS won’t let you see how much space is wasted to ‘Other’ storage.What is ‘Other’ storage used for?
‘Other’ iOS storage includes mostly everything that doesn’t fit into the existing categories, as reported by iTunes: Apps, Audio, Books, Documents & Data, Movies, TV Shows, Photos and Podcasts.
As per Apple, the ‘Other’ iOS storage includes the following items:
Your device’s settings
High-quality VoiceOver voices
Things like Safari Offline Reading List, files created within apps and app content such as contacts, calendars, SMS and iMessages, emails and their attachments and other items are not part of ‘Other’ storage. Instead, these items are lumped into the ‘Documents & Data’ storage category in iTunes.
Here is the full list of iOS storage categories and the data each category encompasses, as reported in iTunes:
Audio: Songs, audio podcasts, audiobooks, voice memos and ringtones
Video: Movies, music videos and TV shows
Photos: Camera Roll content, Photo Stream and Photo Library
Apps: Installed apps
Books: iBooks books and PDF files
Documents & Data: Safari Offline Reading List, files created within apps and app content like contacts, calendars, iMessages, text messages, emails, Mail and Messages attachments
Other: Settings, Siri voices, system data and cached files
By far, the biggest portion of ‘Other’ storage is occupied by various cached files.Why are caches in ‘Other’ storage?
Apple says that iOS creates cached files when you stream or view content like music, videos and photos. “When you stream music or video, that content is stored as cached files on your iOS device,” says the company.
On iOS devices, most caches are not visible to users in per-app sections in Settings → General → Storage & iCloud Usage, though some are. For instance, Safari’s Offline Reading List cache can easily be deleted through the Settings app. On the other hand, caches that iOS manages automatically, like streamed audio and video content, are not exposed to end users and cannot be deleted in Settings.
A quick experiment can easily prove this. Imagine there’s absolutely nothing stored in the stock Videos app on your iPhone. Say you then launch Videos and stream a five-gigabyte movie that was purchased on the iTunes Store.
The reported storage usage for the Videos app in Settings won’t increase at all.
But if you glance at the amount of free device storage reported in Settings, you’ll notice it has dropped by five gigabytes due to that streamed video being cached automatically by iOS, thereby taking up five gigabytes of ‘Other’ storage.
Because the amount of device storage wasted on the ‘Other’ category cannot be directly checked out in iOS, less experienced users may be left scratching their head, puzzled as to why their reported free storage isn’t higher.How iOS manages caches
iOS was conceived to manage storage automatically. Cached content may live in ‘Other’ storage for as long as system circumstances allow. iOS does flush the caches intelligently, especially if the system runs low on storage.
‘Other’ storage on my iPhone 6s, as reported by PhoneClean. Most of it are caches of previously streamed video content.
‘Other’ storage on my iPhone 6s, as reported by PhoneClean. Most of it are caches of previously streamed video content.
The other thing to keep in mind are apps. All apps create a residue of temporary files on your device, so they load faster. For example, the stock Camera app and third-party photo editing apps create their own photo caches.
These temporary files, along with other app items that are marked for the system as safe to delete, are caches inside ‘Other’ storage, too. Even the most mundane things, like a failed iTunes sync, may add up to Other storage by littering the device with temporary files and media junk.
Purging caches, manually or with a third-party app, won’t delete apps nor will it remove your documents. These items—app data, settings and your documents—are kept in separate databases which aren’t part of system caches.Why storage amounts on iOS devices differ from what iTunes reports
That’s because iTunes categorizes cached music, videos and photos as ‘Other’ iOS storage instead of actual audio, videos or photos—that’s why the reported usage for Music, Videos or Audio sections might differ.
As an illustrative example of this, iTunes reports that the Audio section is taking up 856 megabytes on my iPhone 6s. On the device itself, however, the actual reported storage amount for the Music app is 565 megabytes.
NOTE: The screenshot below is meant for illustrative purposes and does not reflect the current amount of storage space taken up by music on my device.
The 291-megabyte difference between the 856MB seen in desktop iTunes and 565MB reported by my iPhone is actually caches for the songs I had streamed via Apple Music. Cached media lets the Music app instantly play any previously streamed song, enhancing the experience at the expense of reported free storage.
People who use iCloud Photo Library with the ‘Optimize iPhone Storage’ option may observe a similar discrepancy in the ‘Photos’ storage section between iTunes and iOS Settings, due to large caches of photos in device-optimized resolution.
Your mileage may vary, depending on how you consume media on your devices. To view the storage usage on your iOS device, go to Settings → General → Storage & iCloud Usage → Manage Storage under the Storage heading.Can I decrease ‘Other’ storage?
Yes, but not completely.
You cannot manually purge cached files from ‘Other’ iOS storage. Even though iOS was designed to clear the caches when it needs more space, it doesn’t do this aggressively enough. And sometimes caches aren’t dumped properly either.
For instance, Kevin Hamm found out that streaming a four-gigabyte iTunes movie will temporarily take up four gigabytes in iOS caches. Should iOS for any reason fail to delete that cached movie, the four gigabytes will get stuck in ‘Other’ storage.
Making matter worse, neither iTunes nor the iOS Settings app provide necessary controls for users to manually delete all the cruft that has accumulated on their devices.
RELATED: How to reclaim ‘Other’ iOS storage
The good news is, specialized third-party applications can clear the caches which are clogging up ‘Other’ iOS storage. Any of these Mac apps should get the job done:
Some of the aforesaid programs will identify storage-hogging iOS apps so you can then delete and re-install them, which in most cases will remove 100 percent of app-specific junk from your device.
If you’re jailbroken, do yourself a favor and manage your ‘Other’ iOS storage using iFile or Ryan Petric’s smartly done cache-cleaning tool.
RELATED: 40+ ways to save storage space on iPhone and iPad
Restoring your device from an iCloud backup can also drastically decrease the size of ‘Other’ storage because iCloud backups have been found to store fewer temporary files and caches than those created by iTunes.
In some cases, restoring your device from an iTunes backup might bring over caches and temporary files that haven’t been deleted properly. In iTunes’ defense, iOS crash and log files will be transferred to a computer and deleted from an iOS device during the syncing process so there’s that.
And lastly, restarting a device may prompt iOS to clear some cached content. To restart your device, hold down the power button until a “Slide to power off” message appears, then slide to restart.
Force-restarting, however, might force iOS to purge more caches. To force-restart your device, press and hold the Sleep/Wake and Home buttons simultaneously until an Apple logo appears.
According to a report from Data Reportal, an average American spends 7 hours and 11 minutes looking at a screen every day. If you’re planning to cut down this time, Screen Time makes it convenient to manage app and device usage.
Turning on Screen Time can seamlessly keep track of how much time you spend on your device. Moreover, you can also seamlessly restrict explicit content and social media apps. Further, you can also manage your child’s device to regulate how they use it. So let’s take a closer look at these features.
How to turn on Screen Time on iPhone
Now, you will get a weekly report with insights about your screen time. However, this is not all. Screen Time has several features. Keep reading!
Set a Screen Time passcode
You can set a Screen Time passcode to ensure you’re the only one who can extend time or make changes. Follow these steps to set a Screen Time passcode on your iPhone.
Tap Turn ON Screen Time. (using the above steps)
Tap Use Screen Time Passcode.
Note: In case you forgot your Screen Time passcode, update your device to the latest iOS or iPadOS. Now, reset the passcode.
How to turn on Downtime on iPhone
If you are planning to cut down on your or your child’s time, you can turn on Downtime to shut down the device at a particular time. Moreover, you can also customize it for particular days.
Turn on Screen Time.
During Downtime, only phone calls and the apps you choose to allow will be available. Go back and tap Always Allowed. From here, you may choose to always allow an app.
Set daily time limits for App Categories with App Limits
Inside Screen Time, tap App Limits.
Select an appropriate app category → tap Next.
Block at End of Limit means the app will be unusable after the time limit is reached. However, there is an option to Ask For More Time.
All app limits reset every day at midnight.
How to set daily time limits for specific apps with App Limits
Inside Screen Time, tap App Limits.
Set daily time limits for websites with App Limits
Inside Screen Time, tap App Limits.
From the end, tap Websites.
You may also like to see how to block a website in Safari on iPhone and iPad.
How to turn on Content & Privacy restrictions for iPhone and iPad
Open Settings → tap Screen Time.
Tap Content & Privacy Restrictions.
You may tap the appropriate options from the list and choose Allow Changes or Don’t Allow Changes.
How to prevent iTunes and App Store purchases with Screen Time
Open Settings and tap Screen Time.
Communication limits let you choose whom the child can call during allowed Screen Time and Downtime. Check out our detailed guide to set up and use communication limits in Screen Time.
How to enable child’s Screen Time on iPhone and iPad
Open Settings on your child’s iPhone.
After you’ve set the child’s iPhone, you can enable Downtime and set app limits, following the steps mentioned earlier.
If you use Family Sharing, you can also enable Screen Time for your child using the steps shown in the next tip.
How to set up Screen Time for your child through Family Sharing
Note: You need to have Family Sharing enabled to set up Screen Time for family members for this. After that, you can see your child’s screen time reports and set parental controls from your iPhone.
Open Settings on your iPhone.
Tap your name at the top.
Tap Family Sharing → Screen Time.
Next, tap a family member’s name → tap Turn on Screen Time → Continue, and proceed with the onscreen instructions.
Alternatively, after you set Screen Time on your device, you see an option named Set Up Screen Time for Family inside it. Tap it and follow the instructions.
How to turn off Screen Time on iPhone and iPad
Open Settings on your iPhone.
Tap Turn Off Screen Time → enter your password if asked.
You can clear Screen Time usage data by turning off Screen Time. After that, you can re-enable Screen Time if you wish to continue using it.
Note: This will remove all the existing customizations or settings you have set inside Screen Time.
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While iOS 16 has come with a neat background removal tool, there is still no way to get rid of specific objects from images. No matter how impressive a shot may be, it may not be able to arrest attention due to the presence of certain unwanted things. Maybe you want to put the entire spotlight on the subject or maybe you just wish to erase a passer-by from the background to make the image look pleasing to the eyes. Despite the absence of a native eraser, it’s quite easy to remove objects from photos on iPhone and iPad. With that in mind, let me show you how it’s done:
Erase Objects from Photos on iPhone and iPad (Hands-On Guide)
Wondering how the object removal tool works? Well, let’s first sort out the confusion!
So, How Does the Object Removal Tool Work on iPhone and iPad?
In order to erase an object from images, we are going to use a third-party object removal app. Since the App Store is loaded with a ton of object eraser apps, it’s not a big deal to find an app that can live up to your task.
What’s more, many object eraser tools are available for free and support even older operating systems like iOS 15, iOS 14, iOS 13, etc. So, even if you are still using an older version of iOS, you can edit your image without having to shell out any bucks.
Which are the Best Object Eraser Apps for iPhone and iPad?
As I stated above, the App Store is flooded with a plethora of object eraser apps for iPhone. However, not all of them live up to the tall claim. Having tested several apps, I have picked out the following ones as the preferred choice.
Photo Eraser: Available for free and supports iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch running iOS 12 or later.
Photo Retouch – Object Removal: Free, supports iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch running iOS 12.1 or later.
Object Removal: Free, compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch running iOS 13 or later.
All these apps are pretty easy to use and allow you to wipe out unwanted things with the desired control. Hence, you can pick any of these apps to edit your photos.
Quick Steps to Erase Objects from Images on iPhone and iPad
For the purpose of this guide, I’m going to use the Photo Eraser app.
1. To get going, make sure to download the Photo Eraser app on your iPhone or iPad.
2. Now, hit the Image button that shows right in the middle of the screen.
3. Next, you need to choose an image that would like to edit from your photos library.
4. Next up, hit the Object Removal tab that appears at the bottom of the interface.
5. Up next, you can adjust the brush size by dragging the slider left/right. Besides, you can also choose to use the three different tools such as, “free hand”, “lasso”, and “line” to hide all the redundant things.
6. Once you have hidden all the unwanted objects from the image, tap on the Play button at the bottom right corner of the interface. Awesome! The app will immediately get rid of all the hidden objects from the image.
7. Now, you can tap on the check mark located at the bottom right corner of the screen to finish.
8. Finally, the share button at the top right corner of the screen to share the edited photo or save it to your photo library as per your needs.
Though the App Store is loaded with a ton of video-calling apps, FaceTime remains the go-to service for iDevices. Whether it’s letting you enjoy a watch party through SharePlay, enhancing the video-calling game with Center Stage, or the impressive voice isolation to keep the background noise at bay, it’s got you fully covered as a video-calling app.
Nevertheless, there is one important feature that is yet to grace this app – “Call scheduling”. From a user experience perspective, it’s disappointing. But before you think of switching to other apps, let me tell you that it’s possible to schedule FaceTime calls on iPhone, iPad, and Mac.
Schedule FaceTime Calls on iPhone, iPad, and Mac
To ward off any unexpected hurdle, let’s first talk about requirements!
What are the Requirements for Scheduling FaceTime calls?
As you already know that there is no built-in call scheduling functionality in the FaceTime app, we will have to rely on a workaround to overcome the hurdle. The good thing is you don’t have to look anywhere else to fulfill the requirement as the Apple Calendar app comes with a native FaceTime call scheduling feature.
So, how does the workaround work? Well, you need to just create a calendar event and integrate it with FaceTime. After that, you can adjust other details like date, time, and alerts. Not to mention, the stock calendar app also allows you to send invites to all the participants.
As for the OS requirement, this hack has existed for quite some time. Hence, you should not worry about being left out due to hardware or software limitations.
Schedule FaceTime Calls on iPhone and iPad
Navigate to the Calendar app on your iPhone or iPad and then tap on the “+” icon at the upper-right corner of the screen to create an event. Make sure to name your event in line with your need.
Next, hit the Location or Video Call field and choose FaceTime from the menu.
After that, select the desired Date and Time for your FaceTime call.
If you have set up multiple email accounts, tap on Calendar and then select the right email calendar.
Next, hit Invitees and then send an invite to your contacts.
Then after, tap on the drop-down menu next to Alert and then choose the preferred option.
After you have created the event, tap on Add in the upper-right corner to finish.
And that’s about it! Your scheduled meeting is now battle ready. Depending on how you have customized the alert, it will ping you at the right time so that you and all other participants will start the meeting.
Schedule FaceTime Calls on Mac
You guessed it! Scheduling FaceTime calls on Mac is a breeze.
Head over to the Calendar app on your Mac and hit the “+” icon at the upper-left corner of the window.
Then, choose FaceTime as the video-calling app.
Now, go ahead and add all other important details like Date, Time, and Invites. And yes, do not forget to adjust the alerts to ensure you will get timely notifications.
Edit or Delete Scheduled FaceTime Calls on iPhone and iPad
What if you want to make some changes to your scheduled FaceTime calls or wish to completely get rid of it? No worries!
Fire up the Calendar app on your iPhone or iPad and go to your scheduled FaceTime call event.
Next, tap on the Edit button at the upper right corner of the screen and then make the changes.
If you want to scrap the event, hit the Delete Event and confirm the action.
Edit or Delete FaceTime Calls on Mac
At any time you want to tweak the scheduled meeting or delete it, the Apple Calendar app will let you do so without any hassle.
Go to the Calendar app on your Mac and open the scheduled meeting.
Now, change the details as per your requirements.
Stay Tuned In For More Such Handy Tips..!
Hopefully, scheduling and managing FaceTime calls on iOS, iPadOS, and macOS will be straightforward for you from now onwards. Until Apple offers a native call scheduling feature in the video calling app, use this method to get your work done. Having used this hack for a long time, I must say that it works as expected. The best part about it is that it feels pretty intuitive. What has been your experience with it?
Read more: How to Disallow Account Changes on iPhone or iPad (2023)
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