In the iOS 12 Shortcuts app, I'd like to build a shortcut that opens a specific app. This app doesn't have any specific integration with Shortcuts, but it's sufficient to just have the system open the app. So I added an "Open App" action to the end of my workflow — but the app I want to open does not appear in the list of choices for the Open App action.

I noticed that a small fraction of apps on my phone are missing from the Open App list. It seems pretty random: Apple Pages is missing but Keynote is not, some but not all games are missing, etc.

Is there some reason that I cannot open certain apps via Shortcuts?

1 Answer 1


You could try using the "Open URL" action to open the app using URL schemes.

You can find some URL schemes by doing a Google search for it(here's a good list).

If you can't find it online, you can get it manually(you need a computer):

  1. Download the .ipa of the app you want to get the URL schemes of(you can use iTunes)
  2. Rename it from .ipa to .zip and extract it
  3. Open the Payload folder
  4. Right click on the application inside and chose "Show Package Contents"(or just open the .app folder if you're not on Mac)
  5. Open the Info.plist file and look for "URL Schemes".
  • do not forget to Up Vote the OP if the question been asked was clear.
    – Ruskes
    Commented Sep 21, 2018 at 21:55
  • This is a useful workaround in some but not all cases. Some of the apps that don't appear for me in the "Open App" list in Shortcuts do not support custom URL schemes. Commented Sep 24, 2018 at 14:12

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