Run your shortcuts on an automated schedule in the background


Cronios - Run Your Shortcuts on an Automatic Schedule in the Background!

I'm really happy to share with you my latest shortcut. Cronios is a full-featured shortcuts scheduler^1 on iOS. Configure your shortcuts to run automatically in the background on the dates, times, ranges, and intervals you specify, without any interaction on your part!

It's worth repeating. With Cronios, we can now run our shortcuts automatically in the background. No more tapping on icons, notifications, or links; no more having to tell Siri what you want it to do. Now, you tell your iPhone or iPad what to do and when to do it.

Check out the Cronios launch video here:


Download Cronios from RoutineHub


What's Now Possible

With its third method of running shortcuts, Cronios opens up a whole new set of possibilities for automating your iOS device. Consider what is now possible when your shortcuts can run with no intervention on your part other than activating Cronios (and making sure it remains active):

  • Back up your shortcuts every three hours^2 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the work week.
  • Turn on Do Not Disturb mode based on events in your calendar.
  • Deliver a customized notification when your battery level reaches a certain threshold.
  • Collect information from the web while you are sleeping for review in the morning.
  • Provide an audible alert every five minutes of interval training to push it hard for one minute.
  • Send emails on your behalf during the day.
  • Take a photo at periodic times and email them to you.
  • Display an hourly status report of the current time, online status, battery level, weather, upcoming events & reminders and step count.
  • Prompt you periodically to see how you are feeling during the day. Results are recorded to a text document or uploaded automatically to a spreadsheet in the cloud.

This is a very complex shortcut (it's nearly 2900 action steps long!), so I urge people to take a look at the documentation in-app and at There's a lot of info on how to keep Cronios active as long as possible. I've personally had Cronios running uninterrupted for up to four hours.


For developers, the documentation is also full of tips on making background-aware shortcuts. Some shortcuts will be easy to optimize, but others will require some re-working (namely those that require user input or are prone to timeouts). I'm super excited about what's now possible, and I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone can do now that we can run our shortcuts in the background day and night.

Scheduling and background running of shortcuts seriously needs to be a part of iOS, but I honestly don't know if Apple wants to go that route. Until then, we have Cronios to fill in the gap.

Please enjoy!


^1 Cronios, a Marriage Beween Cron and iOS - Cron is a time-based scheduling tool frequently found on Unix-like operating systems such as MacOS and Linux. It allows people to set up tasks which run at fixed times, date ranges and intervals. Cronios brings the scheduling power and flexibility of cron to iOS.

^2 Fuzzy *️⃣ Schedules - Cronios further extends cron with Fuzzy ️⃣ schedules. Cronios takes into account the fact that it is not always running 24/7 on your iOS device. Fuzzy ️⃣ allows you to run a shortcut once within a specific range (i.e. I want my backup script to run once between 9:00 am and 9:59 am).

Latest Release Notes

1.1.0 - Jan. 19, 2019, 6:50 a.m.

- Keep-Alive Beep: Keep Cronios running much longer in the background with a quick and unobtrusive beep every evaluation period.
- Cronios Watcher: Notify you within minutes of Cronios stopping. One tap relaunches Cronios again in “Run Continuously” mode. Requires Scriptable from the App Store be installed on your iOS device.
- Priority: Set the priority of cron jobs, which determines the order in which they run. Choose from Critical, High, Normal, and Low.
- Lock Detection: Detect when your iOS device is locked and prevents certain shortcuts with Lock Prevention enabled from running.
- Exclude From Success Notifications: Exclude a shortcut from appearing in the list of successfully run shortcuts after every evaluation period.
- Developer Documentation Updates: Provide more information for shortcut developers to create great background-aware shortcuts.
- Auto-Save: Automatically save changes when editing cron jobs.
- New Icons: A more consistent icon theme throughout the app.
- Faster Performance: Return to the Cronios Home screen faster after editing a cron job.
- Bug Fixes

All release notes