The rundown of features coming in the new version of macOS – to be known as Monterey – was a long one but one blew my mind. Universal Control allows you to drag items from your Mac desktop straight over onto your MacBook or iPad in some kind of Minority Report wizardry. This also allows you to use a single mouse and keyboard across all of your devices.
When the devices are placed next to each other you are able to move your cursor to the edge of the screen and the device next to it will recognize it. Then if you move the cursor a bit further it will appear on the second device. You can then move the mouse freely between the two as if it was an extended display.
The difference is that it’s not simply acting as a display, it’s still running as its own system – though it does need to be on the same iCloud account. It means that instead of having to drag items to Airdrop, you can just drag them straight over.
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This works on up to three devices at once, so can incorporate your iMac, MacBook and iPad and drag between all three, or use the same mouse and keyboard for all three. It certainly makes things easier for those that work on different devices.
Up until now, Universal Control hadn’t been available in any of the public or developer betas. This led some to think that the feature could be delayed. However, just weeks before the expected release, MacRumors reported this week that it is now fully accessible in the developer’s beta and likely to make it on to the next public beta.