There are many hidden features in both macOS and iOS that often go under the radar, either because they haven't received a lot of attention from Apple in marketing materials or they've been forgotten after a period of time.

In our latest video over on YouTube, we've done a second video in our macOS tips series, offering up some useful tricks and shortcuts you might not know about.

  1. Custom Keyboard Commands - You can create custom keyboard commands for specific applications or for all of your apps by going to System Preferences --> Keyboard --> Shortcuts and choosing App Shortcuts. From here, click on the "+" button to add a new keyboard shortcut and a title for it. In our example in the video, we've replaced standard paste with paste and match style, which strips out formatting for copy pasted content. With this replacement, when we use the Command + V keys to paste, it uses paste and match style instead of regular paste.
  2. Spotlight Calculator - Rather than opening up the calculator app, you can use Spotlight to do quick and easy calculations. Just type Command + Space to open up spotlight and type in the simple math problem you need to solve.
  3. Using Keychain Access to Find WiFi Passwords - If you've forgotten the password to a WiFi network, you can use Keychain Access to figure out what it is. Open up the Keychain Access app and then choose "System" to see all of the saved passwords for WiFi networks you've connected to. Select one, click on "Show Password," enter your account credentials, and the info will be shown in plain text. You can access all of your saved logins and passwords in Keychain Access if needed.
  4. Hide the Menu Bar - A lot of people have their docks hidden for more available screen space when the dock isn't in use, and you can do the same thing with the menu bar at the top of your Mac. Go to System Preferences --> General and then check the "Automatically hide and show the menu bar."
  5. Touch Bar Escape Keyboard Command - If you hate the non-physical escape key on Apple's Touch Bar MacBook Pros, there's a keyboard command alternative that's supported by most apps. Use Command + Period in lieu of the escape key to do things like exit out of full screen windows.
  6. Make Minute Volume and Brightness Adjustments - If you hold down Option + Shift while you use your volume or brightness keys, you can adjust the brightness or volume in smaller increments.
  7. Use Command + Tilde to Switch Between Windows - If you have multiple windows of the same application open, you can shift between them quickly using Command + Tilde. So, for example, if you have a ton of Safari windows open, this keyboard command will let you sort through them quickly.

For more of our how tos and guides, make sure to check out our How To and Guide roundup sections on the site. For more Mac specific tips, keep an eye on our macOS High Sierra roundup and our macOS Mojave roundup, where we highlight macOS tips and tricks in addition to everything you need to know about the two operating systems.

Have some awesome lesser-known tips and tricks for macOS that more people should be aware of? Let us know in the comments and we may include them in a future video.

Top Rated Comments

donglewhine Avatar
51 months ago
Here goes one I find extremely useful: when you highlight a file in Spotlight (and many other apps too), use cmd+R to locate it, i.e. open the containing folder.
Also, keeping cmd pressed (this one in Spotlight only) reveals a status bar down below displaying the path to the file.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lopezzi Avatar
51 months ago
I believe it's Option-Shift for the incremental volume and brightness, not just shift by itself. Shift by itself does seem to mute the feedback with the volume buttons though.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lec0rsaire Avatar
51 months ago
I just really love macOS. I get that most people believe an OS should just be something that stays out of the way while you use programs. However, for me macOS is the main attraction. It is just so beautiful and always a pleasure to use. I used to think Leopard and Snow Leopard were the pinnacle but the truth is it has never been as good as it is today. All of the new features introduced since Yosemite would be hard to live without today. I haven’t installed the Mojave beta but I’m sure I’m going to like it more than Sierra/High Sierra.

While it is really intuitive and looks simple, it is also incredibly complex as well in a good way. Lots of customization is available for those that want it. It is loaded with tons of features and little things that even long time users probably aren’t aware of although I’m not talking about these examples in particular.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HiRez Avatar
51 months ago
Great tips as usual! I’ve been using Macs every day for over 30 years but I always get something out of these I didn’t know.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jclo Avatar
51 months ago
#4 – whoa, since when is the Mac's menu bar called the status bar? (And the option refers to hiding and showing the "menu bar," not the "menu bar app.")
You're right, I should have called it the menu bar. I've updated. Thank you :)

I've also fixed the bit that said option shift didn't work with Touch Bars, it does! I'm not sure what I was doing wrong earlier, but so long as the Touch Bar is expanded, it works when you tap the volume keys. Thank you guys for the feedback, I really appreciate it.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ignatius345 Avatar
51 months ago
If you hold down Option + Shift while you use your volume or brightness keys, you can adjust the brightness or volume in smaller increments.
If you hold just Option when hitting any of the volume keys (up/down/mute), it will open the Sound preferences.

Same goes for

- brightness (opens Displays)
- Mission Control (opens Mission Control preferences)
- keyboard brightness (opens Keyboard preferences)

Option-pressing media playback keys and the Launchpad keys seems to do nothing.
[doublepost=1533399514][/doublepost]
I knew about this for macOS, but is there a similar volume incrementer for iOS? I always have to make minute volume adjustments by using the Digital Crown on my Apple Watch.
Long-standing iOS irritation: there are only 16 levels of volume when using the volume buttons! It's pretty easy to get "caught" between two when adjusting the volume to your preferred level. This carries through with connected Bluetooth speakers and headphones with volume controls.

Why not at least 32 levels or even 64? If there's a concern about volume changes being too slow, play with the acceleration so it changes faster as you hold it. Not exactly UI rocket science.

Feels like a very basic shortcoming in a device that gets used frequently used for audio playback.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

M2 13-Inch MacBook Pro With 256GB SSD Appears Slower Than Equivalent M1 in Real-World Speed Tests

Monday June 27, 2022 1:57 pm PDT by
Benchmark testing has indicated that the 256GB variant of the 13-inch MacBook Pro with M2 chip offers slower SSD performance than its M1 equivalent, and now real-world stress testing by YouTuber Max Yuryev of Max Tech suggests that the 256GB SSD in the 13-inch MacBook Pro is also underperforming in day-to day-usage. The M2 MacBook Pro with 256GB SSD and 8GB RAM was slower than the M1 MacBook ...
M2 Pro and Max Feature

Apple's Upcoming M2 Pro Chip for High-End MacBook Pro and Mac Mini Will Reportedly Be 3nm

Monday June 27, 2022 7:31 am PDT by
TSMC will manufacture Apple's upcoming "M2 Pro" and "M3" chips based on its 3nm process, according to Taiwanese industry publication DigiTimes. "Apple reportedly has booked TSMC capacity for its upcoming 3nm M3 and M2 Pro processors," said DigiTimes, in a report focused on competition between chipmakers like TSMC and Samsung to secure 3nm chip orders. As expected, the report said TSMC will...
iPhone 11 Pro vs iPhone 14 Pro

iPhone 11 Pro vs. 14 Pro: New Features to Expect if You've Waited to Upgrade

Monday June 27, 2022 11:22 am PDT by
With many customers choosing to upgrade their iPhone every two or three years nowadays, there are lots of iPhone 11 Pro users who might be interested in upgrading to the iPhone 14 Pro later this year. Those people are in for a treat, as three years of iPhone generations equals a long list of new features and changes to look forward to. Below, we've put together a list of new features and...
original iphone 2007

15 Years Ago Today, the iPhone Went On Sale

Wednesday June 29, 2022 4:43 am PDT by
Fifteen years ago to this day, the iPhone, the revolutionary device presented to the world by the late Steve Jobs, officially went on sale. The first iPhone was announced by Steve Jobs on January 9, 2007, and went on sale on June 29, 2007. "An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator... these are not three separate devices," Jobs famously said. "Today, Apple is going to reinvent the...
tesla carplay hack

Tesla Apple CarPlay Hack Updated to Work With Any Tesla Model

Monday June 27, 2022 3:38 am PDT by
Polish developer Michał Gapiński has released a new and improved version of his "Tesla Android Project" which brings Apple's CarPlay experience to more Tesla vehicles than ever before. According to Gapiński, version 2022.25.1 provides "100% functional CarPlay integration for any Tesla," and comes with several new features and bug fixes. The project now supports DRM video playback so that...
13 inch macbook pro m2 mock feature 2

Base 13-Inch MacBook Pro With M2 Chip Has Significantly Slower SSD Speeds

Sunday June 26, 2022 2:52 pm PDT by
Following the launch of Apple's new 13-inch MacBook Pro with the M2 chip, it has been discovered that the $1,299 base model with 256GB of storage has significantly slower SSD read/write speeds compared to the equivalent previous-generation model. YouTube channels such as Max Tech and Created Tech tested the 256GB model with Blackmagic's Disk Speed Test app and found that the SSD's read and...
maxresdefault

Video Comparison: M2 MacBook Pro vs. M1 MacBook Pro

Tuesday June 28, 2022 2:45 pm PDT by
Apple last week launched an updated version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro, and it is the first Mac that is equipped with an updated M2 chip. As it's using a brand new chip, we thought we'd pick up the M2 MacBook Pro and compare it to the prior-generation M1 MacBook Pro to see just what's new. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. For the video comparison, we're using the...
iPhone vs Galaxy Larger

Apple Executive Says Samsung Copied the iPhone and Simply 'Put a Bigger Screen Around It'

Tuesday June 28, 2022 8:59 am PDT by
The Wall Street Journal's Joanna Stern today shared a new documentary about the evolution of the iPhone ahead of the 15th anniversary of the device launching on June 29, 2007. The documentary includes an interview with Apple's marketing chief Greg Joswiak, iPhone co-creator Tony Fadell, and a family of iPhone users. One segment of the interview reflects on Android smartphones gaining larger...
widgets ios 16 feature

Gurman: iPhone 14 Pro to Feature Always-On Display Showing iOS 16's New Lock Screen Widgets

Sunday June 26, 2022 7:36 am PDT by
iPhone 14 Pro models are widely expected to feature always-on displays that allow users to view glanceable information without having to tap to wake the screen. In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter for Bloomberg, Mark Gurman said the feature will include support for iOS 16's new Lock screen widgets for weather, fitness, and more. "Like the Apple Watch, the iPhone 14 Pro will be...