Action to reproduce Apple Watch functionality?

Hi guys,

sorry if this is an obvious question—first post.

I have worn an Apple Watch for two years solely because the Drafts complication is so good—otherwise I hate everything about the watch and have longed to get rid of it.

I would get rid of the watch in a heartbeat, if I could figure out how to get the same functionality in an action that I could then pass to a Shortcut. This would mean I could have my AirPods as my defacto capture device, and open dictation with “Hey Siri” rather than via the Drafts complication.

But I can’t get it quite right. The Dictate New Draft action does most of it, but it requires too much input in order to end the dictation (i.e., dragging your phone out of your bag).

Is there any way to have the dictation time out automatically if it doesn’t get input for X seconds, ending/saving the new draft without any user input? Or something?

Any ideas would be very much appreciated. Thanks!

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You are looking for the “Silence Timeout” (docs).

I think that only gets you part way there, however. Your phone needs to be unlocked for those Shortcuts to work.

Shortcuts also has it’s own dictation action, that might not require unlocking, not sure. You might be able to get it to work without interaction with the phone using Shortcuts dictation action and then saving it to Drafts.

I just tried creating the suggested shortcut. It works without needing to unlock the phone.

Are you willing to share the shortcut?
Sounds like a nice and usable script

Here it is. It’s very simple…

Thanks. Though this is using Apples dictation instead of Greg’s custom one.

That might still fully solve the request

Whoa, thanks so much! This is actually better than the best version of what I had in mind. It’s slightly different than the watch app but better for 99% of my use-cases.

The Watch app has a longish timeout, which I have found is good for dictating letters that you have to pause and think about as you go, though it also means you have to touch the complication twice, to start and to end. This shortcut requires NO input beyond the “hey, Siri” trigger, which I don’t even need my hands for if I have AirPods in. So it is a completely friction-free way to capture reminders, to-dos, ideas and other “open loops” that tend to be only a single sentence in length.

Thanks so much!!! I never would have tried this angle if left to my own devices.

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