iPad Global Keyboard Shortcuts with Accessibility

I haven’t seen any mention of this, so I figured I’d post it for others. I stumbled on the following help doc when working with my new Magic Keyboard.

In this doc, you can see it tells you that you can “customize” the keyboard shortcuts on the iPad. I didn’t think there’d be much here but it turns out that you can create keyboard shortcuts to any “Shortcuts” you have on your device. :scream:

I can now mimic many commands I have on my Mac with iPadOS:

  • CTRL+OPT+Space = Add new task to Things
  • CTRL+OPT+G = Search (asks me which entity I’d like to search from: Google, Reddit, iMDB, YouTube, etc…)
  • CTRL+OPT+CMD+T = Start/Stop Timing entries

Some other fun things that I see that you can do:

  • TAB+F to get an on-screen prompt to search for any text on the screen and then press enter to “take action” and activate said item

    This is fun to try and mimic “quick actions” while in apps. Like in Mail: TAB+F, type Inbox, press enter and jump to that mailbox.

  • Keyboard access to the system-level items: Control Center, App Switcher, Notification Center, etc…


Caveats:

  1. It draws a rectangle around your screen when you are using any commands associated with it. You can set it to auto-hide after a few seconds, but that might be distracting for some.
  2. The border has to be active for any commands to work, so if you have it set to auto-hide, then you’ll have to “activate” the keyboard mode and then invoke your shortcut.
  3. It seemed to have a weird effect with arrowing through text editing sometimes, so I re-mapping the “Up, Down, Left, Right” to require the Globe key to be pressed down with them.

Anyway, it’s not perfect and there are edge cases for things, but I’m having fun messing around with it. :blush:

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