Use SF Symbols system image for static UIApplicationShortcutItem

Use UIApplicationShortcutItemIconSymbolName instead of UIApplicationShortcutItemIconFile in your Info.plist.

I read the docs and tried several methods to get this working but the conclusion I reached is that this won't be possible for two main reasons:

  • SF Symbols are only available for native use on devices running iOS 13 or older.
  • Info.plist file can specify a platform and device type but you can't specify an OS version.

In Apple's documents it's also stated that:

You can use SF Symbols in apps running in iOS 13 and later, watchOS 6 and later, and tvOS 13 and later. To browse the full set of symbols, download the SF Symbols app.

This means that you are able to use these symbols but with a standard way. Here is what you can do:

  • Download the SF Symbols app from here.
  • Export the symbols you'd like to use as SVG files.
  • Add exported SVG files to your assets.
  • Use the asset name for the value of UIApplicationShortcutItemIconFile key.

This may not be the method you'd have hoped but it's a valid solution for using SF Symbols as shortcut icons so I hope this works for you.

Native but NOT a much compatible way: (read to the end)

There is a poor documented way and that is to use UIApplicationShortcutItemIconSymbolName instead of UIApplicationShortcutItemIconFile in the Info.plist file.

Old but may better way:

Since there are not too many symbols that you need to use statically at the same time, here is the solution:

  1. Select the symbol you need and export it from SF


  1. Import it in the Assets.xcassets:


  1. Use its name for the key UIApplicationShortcutItemIconFile:





The second method also brings more benefits to your app:

  • Backward compatibility (supporting iOS 12 and below)
  • Forward compatibility! (preventing from breaking changes)
  • Wider support

More description here in these answer