Ultra action button - unlock door without unlocking phone?

I am the new owner of an Apple Watch Ultra. Really enjoying the look and features (ok, mainly the look). I was excited about the Action button functional possibilities, but am limited in my knowledge of Shortcuts. I really need to just buy McSparky’s filed guide (or Rosemary’s book - or both!). Maybe one day…

All I was really hoping to do was be able to assign a shortcut to unlock my Front Door with that button. My lock is a Yale lock that works with the August app. I have it set up in HomeKit, and Siri works with it. But, as far as I can tell, I don’t know of a way to have a shortcut run without the phone being unlocked.

I was hoping to push the action button, and voila – unlock my door. Surely this is possible?

I just raise my arm to speak to my watch, tell Siri to unlock the door, and she does.

That’s awesome! I wonder, though, if anyone has any ideas about my original question?

Okay, since my “correct answer to a different question” wasn’t helpful :slightly_smiling_face:

i created a shortcut on my phone to unlock my front door, then turn on Show on Watch (tap …, then the info circle), and was able to assign it to a complication on my watch. The action button on the ultra should work the same.

There seems to be some latency with shortcuts showing in the Watch app. Not sure what’s up with that.

There is an extra “Run?” confirmation on mine to unlock the door, I suppose because it is security-related.

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Apologies for the ever-so-slight amount of snark. I confess to a little bit of a pet peeve when someone asks Question about method A on a forum, and inevitably gets the explanation of why method B is preferable and they should forget method A. Although, to be fair, often times method B IS superior and the responder could be thanked! As I do thank you for the reminder that a simple Siri request works wonders as an end-around.

I discovered that setting up the shortcut via the HomeKit hook has the desired effect, but I did not know this until the last 24-48 hours! So it works now - I click the button and the door unlocks without any further manual entry.

Of course, that raises the question whether that’s a good idea, since inadvertent unlocking of the front door to your house then becomes a possibility…


No offense taken.

One of the challenges of answering questions here is we often have no idea what the asker already knows, and what their skills are to try things.

There is some portion of the population that doesn’t know they can raise their arm to speak to Siri, and for them, that may have been the easier solution. So I gave it a shot.

I am also an over-enthusiastic answerer, as I like to help people.

A side benefit is that Future People™️ will happen upon this post in their web searches, and learn that they can just lift their arm to speak to Siri.


Thank you! Actually your response did remind me of my initial reason for turning that feature off and wondering again whether it wouldn’t be worth trying again. I am a teacher, and when I first got my first Apple Watch (with that setting turned on, as well as listening for “Hey Siri”), I was constantly triggering it inadvertently (I guess I wave my arms around a lot fkr emphasis while talking ha ha!). So I’ve had it turned off since then and just relied on holding the crown down for triggering Siri.

Your question DID remind me of these other ways to access Siri in the watch. And made me wonder if there’s any way to get around this sensitivity to the gestures in my use case?

There doesn’t seem to be an adjustment for raise to wake sensitivity.
Maybe just turn it off and hold the crown when you need Siri?

Thanks John! You know, I did that like the first day I ever wore my original Series 3, and I had not tweaked any of the settings or customized anything. Raise to wake is so convenient that I may just try it again and see how it goes. Thank you for your patience and thoughtful suggestions! I am glad people like you take the time to respond to queries from people like me!!

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