10 Hidden MacBook Features to Check Out Today

10 Hidden MacBook Features to Check Out Today

Apple’s range of MacBooks, from the 14-inch Mac to the mighty Mac Pro, is known for its sleek design and impeccable performance. While most users are well-acquainted with the basics, they are unaware of the hidden features that can enhance their Mac experience. Below are ten lesser-known functionalities worth exploring on MacBooks, including the Mac mini, Mac Studio, and the Mac Pro lineup with its advanced M2 Ultra and M2 Max processors.

1. Automator
This powerful automation tool simplifies the execution of repetitive tasks on MacBooks. It allows users to create custom workflows with predefined actions and eliminates the need for manual processes.

2. Hot corners
Hot corners allow one to perform specific actions by simply moving the cursor to a corner of the screen. For example, if one customizes the bottom right corner to activate sleep mode, simply dragging the mouse to that corner will put the laptop to sleep. It’s one of the many functionalities that can save time. Users can enable hot corners on various models, including the 16-inch MacBook and the 15-inch MacBook Air.

3. Spotlight
Many people use Spotlight to search specific apps, files, and emails on their Macs. However, this tool can do much more. For instance, it can perform math calculations, currency conversions, and even fetch weather information, flight statuses, sports scores, stock prices, and news! To use Spotlight, one must type out the equation or query in its search bar, which can be easily accessed with a keyboard shortcut “command + spacebar.”

4. Screen recording
This tool is excellent for creating tutorials or capturing memorable moments on one’s Mac. Users can start a screen recording by pressing “shift + command + 5.”

5. Digital signature
This feature allows Mac users to convert their hand-drawn signatures into a digital format effortlessly. When someone holds their hand-drawn signature up to the device’s camera, it automatically captures and transforms it into a digital signature that can be easily placed in any PDF document. This convenient feature streamlines the document signing process, offering users a seamless and paperless solution.

6. Dictation
Devices with macOS also have a speech-to-text feature called “Dictation,” which is an efficient alternative to typing. To activate this feature, one must press the function key twice. Once a microphone icon appears, users can speak instead of typing. Dictation not only saves time but also caters to individuals seeking a more hands-free method of writing.

7. Effortless text file creation
Macs have a handy and time-saving feature that lets users create text files quickly. On selecting a piece of text and dragging and dropping it on the desktop, the system instantly generates a file containing the selected text. This feature eliminates the need for the traditional copy-and-paste method.

8. Quick Look
The Quick Look feature helps preview documents, images, or folders. One must select an item and press the spacebar to view its contents without opening a separate application. It’s a handy feature on models like the Mac mini with M2 Pro, Mac Studio, and the Mac Pro with the M2 Ultra processor.

9. Emoji and symbols
MacOS allows one to access a vast library of emojis and symbols by pressing “control + command + spacebar.” It’s a great feature to express oneself when messaging, available on various models, including the Mac Pro and the Mac mini with M2 Pro.

10. Summarizing information
Devices with macOS have an exciting tool that summarizes lengthy text and helps users grasp the main points of extended articles or documents. After selecting a block of text and right-clicking on it, users must choose the “Summarize” option. MacOS then generates a condensed version of the content, which is easier to digest. This feature is handy for research, reading, and information processing. It helps users efficiently extract critical information without sifting through long passages.

How to choose the right Mac?
Choosing the right Mac involves assessing one’s needs, considering one’s budget, and understanding the processing power required for specific tasks. Here are some factors to consider:

M1 or M2 processors
Users should consider their computing needs when choosing a processor. Two popular options include an older but capable M1 and the recent M2 and its variants that can handle more memory, parallel processing, and faster computing.

Cost and portability
The M2 Mac mini is an excellent choice for those seeking an affordable and portable option. With a base price of $599, it’s not only budget-friendly but also space-saving and highly convenient for travelers. On the other hand, the 15-inch MacBook Air, starting at $1,299, offers the benefits of a lightweight device and high-performance computing.

Mac Studio
Users who do not require the power of the Mac Pro but still need robust performance can consider the Mac Studio. It balances power and affordability, making it an ideal choice for content creators and professionals.

The choice of Mac depends on one’s specific needs. The M1 or M2 MacBook Air and the Mac mini are suitable for basic tasks like streaming, emails, and writing. Serious gamers requiring more robust computing power can opt for the 16-inch MacBook Pro or Mac Studio with M2 Ultra and M2 Max processors. Videographers will find processors like M2 Pro, M2 Max, and M2 Ultra beneficial, providing the necessary power for efficient video editing and rendering.