Five Interesting Mac Apps Worth Checking Out - November 2018

Apps created for the Mac often don't receive as much attention as apps made for iOS devices, so we have a bi-monthly series here at MacRumors that's designed to highlight useful and interesting Mac apps that are worth checking out and potentially investing in.

This week's picks include apps focused on Dark Mode, a new feature introduced in September with the launch of macOS Mojave, along with some useful apps for customizing text, keeping your eyes safe while working, and keeping your Mac awake. Many of our highlighted apps this week were chosen by MacRumors forum members.

  • Amphetamine (Free) - Amphetamine is a Mac app keeps your Mac and your Mac display off by adding a simple on-off switch or customizable triggers. With Amphetamine activated from the menu bar, your Mac will be prevented from going into sleep mode. You can choose to keep your Mac awake indefinitely, for a specific amount of time, while a file is downloading, when a specific app is running, and more.
  • Dark Mode for Safari ($1.99) - Dark Mode in macOS Mojave introduces a darker theme across the operating system, but this doesn't extend to individual apps like Safari. Some websites are implementing Dark Mode support, but for those that haven't, the Dark Mode for Safari extension changes them to a darker theme that's easier on the eyes at night time or in low lighting environments. This is not a perfect app and doesn't work well with all websites, but improvements are being introduced on a continual basis and it can be easily toggled on or off.
  • Textlicious ($1.99) - Textlicious is a simple, inexpensive app that's designed to let you insert styled text in places that normally only accept plain text. If, for example, you've wondered how people are getting those custom fonts that you see sometimes on social networks like Twitter, it's quite possible they're using this app. Textlicious lets you highlight any text you're typing in an app, right click, and then select a style from the pop-up menu. There are options like typewriter, strikethrough, small, script, bold, italic, circled, and more. Something to be aware of with Textlicious and similar apps - Unicode symbols like these break the screen readers that vision impaired people use.
  • Breaks For Eyes ($9.99) - Mojave's Dark Mode is meant to cut down on eyestrain, and the same is true of Breaks for Eyes. When looking at an iPhone, iPad, or Mac, taking frequent little breaks is a good idea to prevent dry eyes, eyestrain, and headaches. Breaks for Eyes reminds you to look away from the Mac screen every 20 minutes for 20 seconds, letting your eyes take a rest. There's a three-day trial, and then the full app costs $9.99 to unlock.
  • NightOwl (Free) - [Update: While we originally featured this app for its ability to add a quick Dark Mode toggle to your Mac's menu bar, as of 2023 a number of users are reporting suspicious network activity related to it, so we've removed our link to it out of caution and users who have installed it may want to consider removing it.]

If you have a favorite must-have Mac app that we haven't highlighted yet, let us know in the comments, and we might feature it in a future video. Many of this month's app picks came directly from recommendations from our forum members, and it's these recommendations that have helped make this series useful.

For more of our Mac app picks, make sure to check out our Mac app recommendation archives.

Top Rated Comments

kurtster Avatar
72 months ago
$10 for a reminder to look away from the screen every few minutes? Really??
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pantherfalcon2332 Avatar
72 months ago
Can confirm that NightOwl is great and its amazing that this feature is baking into MacOS
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
offshore Avatar
72 months ago
These are basically just system utilities.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
s15119 Avatar
72 months ago
These are among the most useful articles you publish. Thank you!
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
qwertme Avatar
12 months ago
Latest update to the NightOwl app was opening a reverse SSH proxy on my computer, nothing about that seemed safe or make sense. Uninstalled
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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