How to iMessage a photo with just one tap

By

Just one tap.
Just one tap.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

I got sick of having to tap a zillion buttons just to iMessage a photo to somebody, so I made a shortcut that lets me tap an icon on my Home screen, and sends my latest photo automatically to a preselected friend.

That’s it. You tap it, and the shortcut grabs the last photo you shot, and sends it. If that sounds like something you want, check it out.

How to print from your iPhone using AirPrint

By

AirPrint is how printers should always have worked.
AirPrint is how printers should always have worked.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

There’s still something kinda magical-feeling about printing documents from your iPhone. Maybe someone sends you a long Word or Pages document that you prefer to read on paper. Or maybe you must sign a hard-copy version of a PDF and send it back via real paper mail.

You may be used to facing a task like this in your iPhone’s email app, and putting it off until you get to your Mac or PC. But chances are, if you own a fairly modern printer, you can just print right from the iPhone. In fact, once you get a taste for it, you’ll prefer printing from iOS. You will never need to deal with drivers, or pick up your 100-page print job only to find every sheet printed too small.

The answer is AirPrint. It’s how printers always should have worked.

Make your own iPhone Safari download manager with Shortcuts

By

Who doesn’t enjoy a well-managed download?
Who doesn’t enjoy a well-managed download?
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

One of the biggest shortcomings of mobile Safari is downloading files. It’ll do it just fine, but it loads everything as if it were a web page. PDFs, ZIPs, MP3s: They all get loaded right there into the current page, whereupon you have to use the Open In… feature to save the file.

Perhaps even worse — you don’t have any idea how long the download is going to take. All you have to go on is the loading progress bar up in the URL bar, which creeps along and really only offers two states: “not done yet” and “done.”

Today we will fix that by whipping up a download manager using the Shortcuts app. Let’s go.

How to stop reading the news on Twitter or Facebook

By

Image-12-03-2019-09-49.595436c4d71c4bd0b269461aca230da1
News readers gather all the latest stories from your favorite sites in one place.
Photo: CocoaCake

How do you read the news? If you do it on Twitter, you’ll be used to missing things as they fly past on your ever-updating timeline. If you read the news on Facebook, you’re being fed articles picked according to Facebook’s own agendas. And if you read the news on regular websites, you spend forever visiting sites just to see if there’s been an update.

If only there was a better way. If only you could open an app and see, at a glance, all the new stories from your favorite websites. Wouldn’t that be something?

The good news is, there are many apps, and many services, that exist to bring you the updates to your favorite sites. They work like Google Reader used to — only way better.

How to translate any PDF or sheet of paper

By

If you can read it, you can translate it.
If you can read it, you can translate it.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

How do you translate a PDF? Maybe you scanned a page from a friend’s German cake recipes book. Or perhaps you’re living abroad and you have no idea what the police just made you sign. There are plenty of ways to translate PDFs and text, but most of them involve either A) Microsoft Word or B) uploading your private documents to a cloud service to be read.

Today we’ll see how to quickly scan a paper document, then translate its written text into English. You’ll be amazed at how fast it is.

How to save and print your iMessages and WhatsApps

By

Get your freshly-printed WhatsApps here.
Get your freshly-printed WhatsApps here.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Yes, this sounds like a joke about the olde worlde CEO who has his secretary print his emails, then transcribe his dictated replies. But printing message threads can be pretty useful. Lawyers, for example, may want a printed record, or a PDF, of a message thread. And even regular humans might appreciate a well-formatted archive of their messages that can be easily searched and marked up.

You still can’t do this on your iDevice. However, thanks to the amazing iMazing Mac app, you can quickly create PDFs of your messages, and even print them. Onto paper.

How to create Dropbox-style links in iCloud Drive

By

Cloud storage.
Cloud storage.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

If you keep your stuff in Dropbox, it’s easy to grab a link to a file or a folder. Then you can send that link to another person or store it in, say, your to-do list so you can quickly open it with a click. You can even grab the link inside the iOS Files app.

But if you use iCloud, this simple task is no longer simple. In typical Apple style, a clean UI comes at the expense of hiding almost everything behind multiple taps and cryptic pop-up boxes. But all is not lost. You can actually grab a link to any file stored in your iCloud Drive — and use it in any app you please.

VO2 max: The Apple Watch metric that reveals your aerobic fitness

By

Max-out your aerobic fitness with Apple Watch by checking the VO2 max metric.
Max out your aerobic fitness with Apple Watch.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Want to know how fit you really are? Apple Watch provides loads of insightful metrics you could check. So many, in fact, that there is not enough space for them all in the Workout app. Instead, you’ll find much of this crucial data buried away in the Health app on your iPhone.

One of the most interesting is VO2 max, which is basically the ultimate test of your aerobic fitness. If you’re into endurance sports, VO2 max is a metric you’ll want to check out.

Here’s a quick guide to everything you need to know about VO2 max on Apple Watch: What it is, how to use it, and how to improve yours.