Race to the Pennant + Siri Shortcuts
By Tyler Hillsman
September 2018

It's iOS update time and Race to the Pennant 7.1 has just been released to take advantage of some great iOS 12 features. As always, Race to the Pennant is available for free on the App Store, but to get fun new features like this, Race to the Pennant Premium is available for only $1.99 per year.

Take a shortcut

In iOS 12, Apple introduced the concept of Siri Shortcuts: quick actions within an app that can be triggered from outside the app. (There are many great explanations of what Shortcuts are and what they can do, and I highly recommend Federico Viticci's overview.) Adding Shortcut support to Race to the Pennant was a logical next feature.

In Race to the Pennant 7.1, you have the ability to add your favorite team (or any team) to Siri with the new "Add To Siri" button on the all new team view. Tapping that button will present the system-wide voice shortcut screen, allowing you to customize your phrase ("Go Royals!" or "Royals standings" or simply "Royals" or something much more creative). And then you're done.

At this point, you can activate Siri from anywhere and trigger your assigned phrase. Siri will tell you the standings information for your team and - if you're using your iPhone - show you a custom view with the team's stats and standings bars representing the teams in the division.

Race to the Pennant's Siri Shortcuts should work on Apple Watch, HomePod, within the new Shortcuts app, and may be proactively suggested by Siri in search or on the lock screen as well. And if you forget your Siri phrase, you'll be able to see what it is (and change or delete it) from the team page.

Team view Shortcut view

A new view

In order to better support the shortcut feature, Race to the Pennant 7.1 also introduces a team-specific view. Previously the home views showed standings across the leagues and a detail view showed standings for a division, but there was no single home for a single team. That changes with this version.

Now your favorite team quick stats on the home view launches directly to the team specific page. And all the detailed stats for each team live there, just like game results.

To the future

Building out the functionality for the shortcut feature also necessitated reworking some of the logic of the app. However, this will make building new features quicker and easier. No promises, but this could usher in the return of the Apple Watch app. It might even simplify the process of adding new sports...

Additionally, the introduction of the team view provides a new home for potential future team-based features. Watch this space.

Thanks, as always, for supporting Race to the Pennant. I hope you find these new features useful.