Rich Notifications in iOS 12
Notifications have always been a big part of our iOS lives, but they can be incredibly frustrating to deal with. In iOS 12, Apple has introduced new features meant to help you curb and act on notifications with the goal of improving the overall experience.
We’ve always taken notifications seriously with Actions and Timepage, but their limited functionality made it difficult to do much of value. However, these recent changes from Apple got us thinking, and we have some updates we think you’ll like: dynamic buttons and instant interactivity.
iOS 12 brings functionality centered around dynamic buttons, which allow us to change which buttons appear during a particular situation. This works in both Actions and Timepage, and can be used as an immediate shortcut to your notes or other fields.
At a basic level, this can be used for tasks like calling the doctor or getting directions. When you put something like an address or a phone number in the Notes section in either app, it’ll recognize its value; as the notification is presented, it’ll surface that information and present it as a button. Tap the button and Actions or Timepage will automatically launch the relevant app to complete the task.
Pair our apps with the all-new Shortcuts app, though, and a new world of automation opens up. Because you can add links within the Notes section, you can link a Shortcut to be accessed from a notification. If, for example, you’ve set an Action Card to remind you to track your work time, you can tap on a dynamic button featuring a Shortcut that bumps you to your time-tracking app of choice. In many cases, Actions and Timepage can be used as launchers for other processes within your device.
A few more important things regarding the pairing of Shortcuts and our apps: these options can also be accessed by 3D Touch within Actions, and you can add a title to the Shortcuts by using Markdown.
Rich notifications have also improved in iOS 12, so you’ll be able to see more and do more when you receive a notification from Actions or Timepage. Perhaps the most important feature is the snooze option, which is now able to support multiple selections; for instance, you can now snooze at 5, 10, 15, or 30 minute intervals.
As always, Action Cards can be opened or completed with buttons brought by notifications. With these updates, though, we can also add options for rescheduling and deleting, providing you the opportunity to act on an Action Card without the need to jump into the app.
Notifications with Timepage have also received a design overhaul, showcasing more event details like Time to Leave and a map of your next location. To see this information, just expand the notification.
With iOS 12, gone are the days of frustratingly limited notifications. We hope that users of both Actions and Timepage enjoy the changes and find them useful in a more meaningful and productive workflow. To find out what else is new in iOS 12, check out Siri Shortcuts and the new Shortcuts app.