Run your flows by pressing a Flic smart button (Preview)

Trigger your flows by pressing a physical button, known as a Flic, from Shortcut Labs. For example, press a Flic to track your working hours, block your calendar, count visitors at an event, or save geographical locations.

Important

Configure all Flic properties by using Flic's mobile app for Android or iOS before you create your flow.

Prerequisites

To use Flics with Microsoft Flow, you must have:

Configure Flic properties

Use Flic's mobile app to program the Flic's events. The events are:

  • click (one quick press)
  • double-click (two quick presses)
  • hold (one long press)

This screenshot shows a sample of what your Flic configuration process might be like:

configure Flics

After you've linked a Flic event to Microsoft Flow, you can then select that Flic as a trigger for your flows. You select triggers later in this walkthrough.

Create a flow that's triggered by a Flic

In this walkthrough, we use a Flic to run a flow that records the time a consultant spends at each client. The consultant presses the Flic once upon arrival, and then presses it again, just before departure from the client. Each press of the Flic starts a run of the flow to which it's connected. The flow saves the current time in Google Sheets, and then sends an email notification. The email contains details about the flow run.

Note: Be sure you've used the Flic mobile app to pair, and configure at least one click action to trigger Microsoft Flow. In this screenshot, I've configured the click action to trigger Microsoft Flow. Later in this walkthrough we configure our flow to trigger when the Flic is pressed once (clicked).

flic config

Let's get started creating our flow.

Start with a template

  1. Sign into Microsoft Flow.

    sign in

  2. Enter flic into the search box, and then select the search icon.

    search flic

  3. Select the Track your working hours with Flic smart button template.

    select template

Create a spreadsheet in Google Sheets

  1. Review the template's details and note that this template requires a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.

    review template details

  2. In Google Sheets, create a spreadsheet that contains a sheet with columns named ClickType and TimeStamp.

    Tip: You name columns in Google Sheets by entering the column name at the top of the column. So, your sheet should appear like this screenshot:

    Google Sheet

    Note: You use this sheet later in this walkthrough.

Add the Flic trigger to your flow

  1. Sign in to the template's services, and then select Continue.

    Continue is enabled after you sign into all required services for the template.

    provide credentials

  2. Enter flic into the search box, and then select the Flic - When a Flic is pressed trigger.

    search for flic trigger

  3. Select the Flic you want to use from the Flic button list on the Flic - When a Flic is pressed card.

  4. Select click from the Events list to indicate that you want to trigger the flow when the Flic is pressed once.

    select flic action

    Optionally, you can select any to indicate that each Flic event (click, double-click, or hold) triggers the flow.

    Double-click indicates that the flow triggers when the Flic is quickly pressed two times. Hold indicates that a long press on the Flic triggers the flow.

    You're free to create other flows and trigger them using the other events in the Events list. For example, you can use the double-click event to record the time you leave a client.

Configure the sheet

On the Insert row card:

  1. Select the spreadsheet you created earlier from the File list.

  2. Select the sheet from the Worksheet list.

    Note: Two additional boxes appear on the Insert row card after you select the sheet. These boxes represent the two columns in the sheet you created earlier.

  3. Select the ClickType box, and then select the Click type token.

  4. Select the Timestamp box, and then select the Click time token.

    configure Google Sheets data

Confirm the email settings are correct

  1. Confirm the Send me an email notification card looks like this screenshot.

    confirm email notification

Save your flow and test it

  1. Give your flow a name, and then save it.

    save your flow

If you've followed along, pressing the Flic once triggers the flow. The flow then records the click type and the current time in the sheet and then sends an email to you.

  1. Press your Flic once.

  2. Open your worksheet in Google Sheets. You should see the ClickType and the Timestamp columns populated with the "click" and the time, respectively.

    see run results

  3. You can also see the results of the run from the Microsoft Flow website or from the Microsoft Flow mobile app. Here's a screenshot of my test run.

    save your flow

  4. Here's what the body of the notification email that I received from the run of the flow looks like.

    save your flow

For extra credit, consider extending the flow to automatically record your location (latitude and longitude) when the Flic is pressed.

More information