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Get Device Info Using Shortcuts

Days off mean overcomplicated automations

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OK, I Was Bored…

Sitting here watching Monsters, Inc. with my son on a lazy Friday-after-Thanksgiving, I was building out a new Shortcut that required my Device Name. I could have just opened Settings and looked up the name, but why do that when you can build an overcomplicated automation to do it?

This Shortcut can get the name, model, resolution, and a few other details and let you copy one or all of the attributes to the clipboard. This version of the Shortcut requires Toolbox Pro to build out the menu with subtitles, but the Shortcut could easily be rebuilt using the default Choose from Menu action.

Here’s How It Works

Step Image Description
1 Get System VersionGet System Version Step 1: Gets OS version
2 Get Device NameGet Device Name Step 2: Gets Device Name
3 Get Device ModelGet Device Model Step 3: Gets Device Model (iPhone, iPad, etc.) It does not get the exact device, but the device family.
4 Get Screen WidthGet Screen Width Step 4: Gets screen width in pixels
5 Get Screen HeightGet Screen Height Step 5: Gets screen height in pixels
6 Get Current AppearanceGet Current Appearance Step 6: Is the device in Light Mode or Dark Mode?
7 Get Current BrightnessGet Current Brightness Step 7: Gets current screen brightness as a decimal
8 Convert to PercentConvert to Percent Step 8: Multiply the decimal to get to a percentage
9 Round to Whole NumberRound to Whole Number Step 9: Round the percentage to a whole number. This avoids things like Brightness: 68.34523%”
10 Get Current VolumeGet Current Volume Step 10: Gets the current volume as a decimal
11 Convert to PercentConvert to Percent Step 11: Convert to percent
12 Round to Whole NumberRound to Whole Number Step 12: Round to whole number
13 Text BlockText Block Step 13: This text block is the basis for the Create Quick Menu” command in the next step. Toolbox Pro can create a nice looking menu with subtitles and icons using a text syntax
14 Create Quick MenuCreate Quick Menu Step 14: This action converts the text block into a temporary list of contacts
15 Choose from ListChoose from List Step 15: This displays the List as a Menu 1
16 Get Details From Chosen ItemGet Details From Chosen Item Step 16: This passes your selection to the next step
17 If BlockIf Block Step 17: IF the subtitle of the chosen menu item is Copy system info to Clipboard”, then perform the next step. This is the subtitle of the All Info” menu action, as explained below
18 Text BlockText Block Step 18: This Text Block contains all of the system info gathered in the first few steps.
19 OtherwiseOtherwise Step 19: Otherwise
20 Text BlockText Block Step 20: This Text Block contains the Subtitle field of the chosen menu item, which is the selected data
21 End IfEnd If Step 21: Close the If Block
22 Copy to ClipboardCopy to Clipboard Step 22: Copy whatever the If Block determined to be the correct data to the clipboard.

Some Further Explanation

One thing I hate about Shortcuts is there is no way to expand a Text Block. If you have one line or a hundred, the Text Block is the same size. Drives me crazy.

Anyway, here’s what’s in the text blocks that you can’t read.

Step 13 Block

This block builds the menu for Toolbox Pro. It’s a pretty slick implementation. Just send in a text block with title:, optional sub: for a subtitle, and an optional icon: to display an icon. Icons can be an emoji, an SFSymbol, or a FontAwesome icon. There is documentation in the Toolbox Pro app.

Here’s the text I use to create the menu in the header image:

title: Name
sub: %Device Name%
icon: hand.raised, 🌈 , white

title: Model
sub: %Device Model%
icon: iphone, 🌈 , white

title: Resolution
sub: %Screen Width%x%Screen Height%
icon: desktopcomputer, 🌈 , white

title: System Version
sub: %System Version%
icon: gearshape, 🌈 , white

title: System Appearance
sub: %Current Appearance%, %Brightness Percent%% Brightness
icon: moon.stars, 🌈 , white

title: All Info
sub: Copy system info to Clipboard
icon: info, 🌈 , white

For the icon item, the first bit is the SFSymbol name, the rainbow emoji tells Toolbox Pro to pick any system color” for the background, and the white” is the actual color of the icon. The color parameters can be set to any system or hex color combination, left transparent, or randomized.

Step 18 Block

This block grabs the Magic Variables from the first few steps and formats them nicely to be copied as a summary block. Here’s the text:

Name: %Device Name%
Model: %Device Model%
Resolution: %Screen Width%x%Screen Height%
System Version: %System Version%
System Appearance: %Current Appearance%
Brightness: %Brightness Percent%%
Volume: %Volume Percent%%

There you have it. Yes, for this one thing I could have looked in Settings. But, this Shortcut gives me a lot more info, allows me to copy it to my clipboard, and can be called up from the search screen.

If I have to do anything more than twice, I try to automate it, even if it gets overcomplicated. Because that’s what makes life fun.

You can get the shortcut here

  1. When setting this, set to Choose From Menu -> As Contact. This creates a temporary contact list of menu items, which allows the icons to be built and extra fields like the subtitle to work. As Contact

🗓️ November 27, 2020 🏷️ Shortcuts🏷️ iOS🏷️ iPadOS Support me on Ko-fi
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