Siri Shortcuts bring new automation tools to the iPhone and iPad.
Well, it tries.
The very first one we tried, “Go Running,” was simple (we thought):
1. Play music from our Running 2018 playlist
2. Open the Nike+ Run Club app
Two very simple operations.
The music plays just fine, then we get the error: “Shortcuts could not open Nike+ Running. It may not be installed on this device.”
Oh, it’s installed, thanks, but it’s named “Nike Run Club.” When you build the Shortcut, the Open App action lets you choose “Nike Run Club” app, but then fails due to the app being named something different internally, “Nike+ Running.” That’s right, Apple’s Shortcuts app cannot find the app that it just let you choose.
Nike and/or Apple are going to have to get on the same page here. You’d think that Apple and a major partner, with years of branded Apple Watch models, no less, would have such obvious kinks tested and fixed at launch, but… Tim Cook’s Apple.
So, guess what will happen if Joe or Jane Sixpack ever tries such a simple thing and it fails?
They’ll never launch the Shortcuts app again. Yup, it was a miracle they even launched it in the first place – automation has never caught on with the masses – and then Apple blew it straight off on the execution by failing once again to pay pretty much any attention to detail and by NOT TESTING BLATANTLY OBVIOUS USE CASES.
And, by the way, while you’re at it, Apple and Nike, how about getting together and fixing the bug that causes the Nike Run Club app on the Apple Watch Nike+ to crash hard, completely borking the current run if it’s paused and the user switches to the Music app to change volume or songs? That bug – again occurring during a painfully obvious use case that even 10 minutes of testing would encounter – has only been there for multiple years through many, many updates. (This is a common complaint about which Apple should be aware since it’s on their own support pages. Apple should have worked with Nike to fix this long ago.)
If you’re going to partner and sell Nike-branded wares, Apple, it behooves you to at least make sure that the Nike stuff works perfectly.
Again, Apple has been selling Apple Watch Nike+ devices for years and, for years, the Nike Run Club app crashes hard when paused during a run if the user tries to do anything in the Music app (and potentially any other app; we haven’t tested it; that’s Apple’s job – or it used to be, anyway).
Yes, we’re sick and tired of buying Apple Watch Nike+ units and updating the Nike Run Club app, hoping against hope, yet continuing to have our runs obliterated due to sloppy fscking coding and piss-poor quality control.
And – one more thing 😉 – tapping “START” should, you know, START the run pretty much immediately, not, oh 3, or 5, 17, or however many random seconds the app takes to decide to actually start. It’s useless for timing a race, for example, when you’d like to tap the START button along with the starting gun and have it, you know, start. Sheesh.
Again, Apple should not be blaming Nike or shuffling Apple Watch users off to Nike support. Apple is selling the Apple Watch Nike+ and the product should be rock solid perfect with every Nike app, even if Apple has to code the Nike apps themselves. Period.
Listen, we recommend the Apple Watch Nike+ hardware. Just don’t try to use its namesake Nike Run Club app. It’s a poorly-coded bad joke and it has been a buggy mess since its inception. Apple and Nike should be embarrassed. The Nike Run Club app lets down the Apple Watch Nike+ horribly.
Hey, Apple, we liked you better when you cared more about the details that matter to users than about your office door handles.
Apple releases Shortcuts app for iPhone and iPad – September 17, 2018
Most people will never use Apple’s ‘Siri Shortcuts’ – June 5, 2018