I have set up a simple automation to run a Shortcut at 6am every morning. If I test the shortcut, it works. If I set the time for [10 mins from now], it works.

However, it never seems to run for 6am where:

  • The phone is plugged into power
  • The phone is on WiFi
  • The phone is in Do Not Disturb
  • The phone hasn’t been unlocked since I went to bed (11pm ish)

I don’t think the power/WiFi/DND make any difference but is there something in iOS that stops automations running if the phone hasn’t been unlocked or used for some period of time?

I see exactly the same issue with a totally different automation that’s supposed to run on my iPad … it runs about once per month if I am lucky and I am wondering if those are times when I had used the iPad in the past hour or so.

Is this a bug or is there something that stops daily automations that I’ve missed in the documentation?

Daily shortcut

Update - here’s how I created it:

Create new automation


Set time of day

  • 1
    I don't know about you, but it seems that with every ios update even the simplest of shortcuts and automations break. It's like I'm constantly rewriting them just to make them work again. This might be related to a recent update. Nov 2, 2020 at 16:08
  • What sequence of taps gets you to the screen image you provided?
    – bmike
    Nov 2, 2020 at 16:58
  • @bmike In the shortcuts app, I am clicking on the “automation” tab, then clicking on my personal automation to get to that screen.
    – Mike
    Nov 2, 2020 at 23:05

2 Answers 2


Whatever was stopping this from working has gone away - it’s started working without me changing anything 🤷

  • Observed similar behavior on iOS 14.3 – I have 24 automations for running a shortcut once every hour on the hour, which would never execute. Likely my update to iOS 14.4 fixed it, because the automations are suddenly running fine now, without any changes to the automations themselves or the shortcut they run. Jan 31, 2021 at 18:52

I believe this is a feature. Depending on what automation you do, you may need to have it run in the HomeKit controller so it triggers from a device that is running and cleared for background tasks.

You can certainly report it to Apple as a bug, but everything I see from power management, automations are designed to be user triggered or relevant to the device in a near term sleep state, not that it wakes itself up and runs work in the background.

I would expect it to run once you wake the device after 6 am, though. That would be worth a bug if the task never triggers.

I’ve had an automation run each day for a week, so I’m not so sure this is a bug at all in iOS 14.

enter image description here

  • Thanks for your advice. When I created the automation I clicked the option “Create an automation that runs on a personal iPhone or iPad” before choosing the daily option. It seems bizarre to me that there would be a daily option, which allows me to specify a time, if the device wouldn’t run it at that time. It doesn’t run upon device wake after 6pm so I’m convinced this is a bug.
    – Mike
    Nov 2, 2020 at 23:08
  • 1
    @Mike I’ll try to reproduce this and make an answer that shows if my example works or fails. Might be a day or so, though...
    – bmike
    Nov 2, 2020 at 23:17
  • I’m going to upgrade to iOS 14.2 to see if that helps…
    – Mike
    Nov 5, 2020 at 20:25
  • …no different on 14.2
    – Mike
    Nov 7, 2020 at 8:57
  • My automations ran before 14.2 and continued last night - not sure what’s up yet...
    – bmike
    Nov 7, 2020 at 11:43

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