While at WWDC 2021 last summer, Apple presented a preview of a new feature for the Mac and iPad called Universal Control. This feature is still being tested by the developers. The main benefit of Universal Control is that it will give you an opportunity to seamlessly control multiple Apple devices such as an iMac, MacBook, and iPad with the same keyboard and mouse.
What is Universal Control
Universal Control will be available to the public via upcoming software updates to iPadOS and macOS Monterey.
Apple is updating its Continuity system with Universal Control. It allows you to work with a single mouse and keyboard and move between Mac and iPad for a seamless experience, no setup is needed. You can pull and drop content between gadgets, by moving your mouse across all their displays as if they were tethered.
When will Universal Control be available
The Universal Control feature is now available to test on the iPadOS 15.4 and macOS Monterey 12.3 betas for developers only.
Basically, the developers of Apple planned to present Universal Control last autumn, but it skipped that release window. Now, it’s considered to be released this spring. Due to the fact that this feature is available for usage in betas is a good indication, it’s considered to be released as soon as possible. It might happen with the official release of iPadOS 15.4 and macOS Monterey 12.3 for the public.
If you install the iPadOS 15.4 and macOS Monterey 12.3 betas, you’ll see three options for Universal Control labeled with beta tags.
How to use Universal Control via Apple devices
If you want to be able to use Universal Control, it’s required to have a Mac running macOS Monterey and an iPad running iPadOS 15. You will not be able to use this feature if you have an earlier version of either operating system. If you have a consistent Mac and iPad, to switch on Universal Control, you should just adjust settings on both.
Keep in mind that it’s required to have both devices using the same iCloud account. If they’re using different iCloud accounts, you won’t be able to use Universal Control. You should also have Bluetooth and Wi-Fi turned on on both devices.
So, if you want to switch on and use Universal Control on your Apple devices, you should follow the steps which would be mentioned in the section below:
- First of all, you should tap on the Apple icon on your Mac.
- After that, you should head to Preferences.
- Then, you should go to General.
- Next, you should click on AirPlay & Handoff.
- After that, you should click on the Handoff toggle. In this way, you will switch it on.
- Then, you should click on the Cursor and Keyboard toggle. In this way, you will switch it on.
- Next, you should put your iPad next to your Mac.
- After that, you should move your mouse pointer to one edge of the screen, and keep moving it in that direction on your Mac.
- Then, you will see a bar that would be displayed on the side of the display. This bar will indicate the connection that has been set.
- Next, you should keep moving the mouse in the same direction until it would be displayed on the iPad screen.
- After that, you should see if the mouse cursor is present on the iPad screen, it means that your keyboard and mouse will be able to work on the iPad.
- Keep in mind, if you want to use your mouse and keyboard with your Mac, you should move the mouse cursor back to the edge of the screen, and keep moving it in that same direction until it would be displayed on your Mac display.
- This procedure can be repeated with up to two additional iPads. Universal Control is able to remember up to three iPads. If you move your cursor off the screen on your Mac, it would be moved automatically to the iPad that you have been using the most frequently.
On which Mac and iPad Universal Control can be used
You should keep in mind that Universal Control demands iPadOS 15.4 on an iPad and macOS Monterey 12.3 on a Mac. There will be a list of compatible devices displayed in the section below:
- MacBook Pro (2016 and later)
- MacBook (2016 and later)
- MacBook Air (2018 and later)
- iMac (2017 and later)
- iMac (5K Retina 27-inch, Late 2015)
- iMac Pro, Mac mini (2018 and later)
- Mac Pro (2019)
- All iPad Pro models
- iPad Air (3rd generation and later)
- iPad (6th generation and later)
- iPad mini (5th generation and later)
As you can see, Universal Control is a feature that can make your device usage much easier. That’s why many users are waiting forward for it.