Shortcuts 101

How To: Quickly Generate Anonymous, Throwaway Email Addresses on Your iPhone to Keep Your Real Email Accounts Safe from Spam

A temporary email can go a long way. Using your actual email to sign up for a mailing list to receive 10% off a purchase doesn't make sense if you don't use the website much. It means you'll have to deal with spam emails from then on, which is why an anonymous email is perfect not to have to deal with all that trouble. And that's where the TempMail shortcut for your iPhone comes in handy.

How To: Stop Notification Banners from Popping Up for Custom App Icon Shortcuts on Your Home Screen

Users on Android could customize their app icons for some time, but it's a relatively new addition to the iPhone. You could change icons since iOS 12, but it really took off in iOS 14 and got even better in iOS 14.3. Still, it's not as easy as on Android, and you'll see a notification every time you open an app with your custom icon. However, there is a workaround to stop those annoying notifications.

How To: Change the Color Theme of Any App Interface on Your iPhone — Without Affecting the Rest of iOS

Few apps on the iPhone give you ways to change their color scheme aside from Dark Mode in iOS 13 and later, but that doesn't mean you can't give an app a new color theme or filtered look. With the Shortcuts app in iOS 14 and later, it's totally possible, and it'll work in practically any app.

How To: This Shortcut Translates What You Say to Text in Any Language in Any App on Your iPhone

When iOS 14 came out, Apple released Translate, an app for translating voice and text between several languages (even within Safari). Unfortunately, it's not as comprehensive as some third-party apps or even Siri. That's why Apple uses Microsoft's translation services within Shortcuts. It may sound surprising, but we're not complaining since you can do some pretty awesome things with it.

How To: The Best Way to Bypass Website Paywalls & Unlock Full Articles on Your iPhone

One of the most aggravating things that can happen on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media apps is when a friend shares an exciting story, and a paywall prevents you from reading any of it. You could pay for a subscription to unlock it, but there are so many news sites that it can be both confusing and expensive to spend money on all of them.

How To: The Easiest Way to Resize Photos on Your iPhone in Bulk or Individually

The rear cameras on iPhones have remained at 12 megapixels since the iPhone 6s, but with each new iPhone model, more data is going into photos. That means larger file sizes. If you're running into issues with your pictures being too large, whether you're sharing or uploading them, there's an easy way to resize an image or group of images using a shortcut.

How To: Use Any Music Playlist to Set Your Favorite Album Covers as the Lock Screen Wallpaper on Your iPhone

The music you listen to is often a reflection of your personality, which is why people tend to use the artwork from their favorite albums as device wallpapers. But one lonely album cover may not look right on your iPhone's lock screen, and it's not indicative of your broader music interests. To combine cover art into one lock screen background, there's a shortcut that makes it easy to do for any playlist.

How To: Convert Dates & Times to Different Time Zones on iOS Without Leaving the App You're In

Working with people in different time zones can be difficult when scheduling a time to meet up virtually, whether it's on Zoom, FaceTime, another video chatting app, or just a good old-fashioned phone call. The time needs to be good for all parties, and trying to remember UTC offsets and doing mental math isn't easy. Luckily, there's an easier way to deal with time zones on your iPhone.

How To: The Easiest Way to Convert Videos to GIFs on Your iPhone

Countless third-party apps and services exist that can convert the videos on your iPhone into GIFs. With so many options available, the problem becomes which one to choose. Do you install something on the App Store that provides good quality but costs money, or should you use a shady online service where you have to jump through hoops to get the GIF? Your best option may be neither.

How To: The Easiest Way to Download High-Res Cover Art for Albums, Movies, Books, Podcasts, Apps & More — Right from Your iPhone

The internet is saturated with low-quality pictures, making it difficult to find a high-resolution image for specific albums, TV shows, movies, podcasts, music videos, apps, and books. Apple uses high-quality images, but it seems impossible to download cover art, posters, thumbnails, icons, and other images from within its apps on your iPhone. Now, with the help of a shortcut, it's as simple as can be.

How To: Make Your iPhone Switch Wallpapers Automatically When Dark Mode or Light Mode Is Enabled

There are still and live wallpapers on your iPhone that can go dark when Dark Mode is active or light when Light Mode is on, but there's no easy way to do the same for custom backgrounds. That doesn't mean you're out of luck, though, because you can use Shortcuts to build a workaround until Apple gets us an official "Dark Mode" option for automation.

How To: Create a 'My Year in Music' Cover Art Collage from Your iPhone's Music Library to Share on Social Media

Apple Music's Replay feature sucks. Aside from not being very accessible, it offers a fraction of your history compared to Spotify Wrapped, which does a deep dive into what you listened to over the last year. Not only that but Spotify packages data into visuals you can share on social media. While you could share Replay screenshots, there are better options out there for Apple Music users.

How To: Get a 'Select All' Button for Webpages in Safari on Your iPhone

It should be simple to select and copy all text on a webpage in Safari, but it won't work as it does in other apps. Usually, you can press-and-hold down anywhere on a page and choose "Select All" from the edit menu, but that functionality is disabled in Safari and WebKit-based browsers by default — including in the latest iOS 14 version. Luckily, there is a workaround to getting a "Select All" button back.

How To: Block Shortcuts Notifications from Showing Up Every Time You Run an Automation on Your iPhone

There are a lot of cool shortcuts you could run on your iPhone, but in iOS 13 and iOS 14, you'll likely see a notification any time you try to run an automation. Shortcuts should feel seamless when their actions are performed, and getting a banner alert each time one initializes takes away the seamlessness of it all. But there is a way to block them.

How To: Auto-Change Your iPhone's Background with MacOS Big Sur's Dynamic Wallpapers

Three new wallpapers showed up in iOS 14.0, each with dark and light versions, while iOS 14.2 added eight more. Each iPhone also has live wallpapers catered specifically for it. However, none of Apple's wallpapers are dynamic. That means they won't change automatically based on certain conditions, such as what time of day it is. MacOS's do, though, and you can get those working on your iPhone.

Blank Icon Maker: The Easiest Way to Place Apps, Folders & Widgets Anywhere on Your iPhone's Home Screen

While Apple has been making strides in iPhone customization, it's still not up to par with what Android is and always has been. You can hide apps from the home screen now in iOS 14, but for everything that's still there, you can't add gaps between icons on the same page to segregate them where you want. However, some workarounds give that effect.

How To: Lock Any App on Your iPhone Behind Face ID, Touch ID, or Your Passcode for Extra Privacy & Security

Apple does not provide a native way to lock apps on your iPhone behind Face ID, Touch ID, or your passcode. For a long time, we've wanted that option for improved privacy and security, but Apple does allow developers to use its authentication protocols. Apps like Messenger, Outlook, and WhatsApp give the option to lock them down, but for the apps that don't, you can force it with a little time and effort.