From iPhones to MacBooks: Apple’s Latest Innovations Take Center Stage

Apple’s recent fall season has been quite eventful, featuring an array of new products and features ranging from hardware and software enhancements to the introduction of the latest Apple Watches, iPhones, and Apple Pencils. The highlight was the unveiling of the new M3 chip, updated 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros, and a revamped iMac at the “Scary Fast” event in late October.

While the smaller updates in MacOS Sonoma didn’t receive as much attention as other upgrades this year, the introduction of new Macs this fall is set to create a significant impact. For those considering upgrading both their Mac and iPhone, it’s important to ensure compatibility between the two devices.

The update to MacOS Sonoma incorporates features that have been available to iPhone users for some time, along with some new ones introduced in iOS 17.

There are several new Mac features that enhance the synergy between my phone and computer. These include ways to fix annoying iOS 17 features and essential Mac keyboard shortcuts.

Widgets have been around for a while but having them on the desktop is quite useful. For example, I use a clock widget to display Pacific Standard Time, making it easier to coordinate with my West Coast colleagues.

Using widgets is straightforward; right-clicking with your mouse or double-clicking your trackpad on the desktop brings up a menu. From here, you can select “Edit Widgets” and choose from a range of widget sizes and applications. Removing a widget is also simple, either by right-clicking or using two fingers on the trackpad and selecting “Remove Widget,” or by clicking the small red button after selecting “Edit Widget.”

Widgets can also be moved from the Notification Center to the desktop, and adding widgets to the Notification Center is just as easy. All you need to do is scroll to the bottom of your Notification Center and click “Edit Widgets.” Removing widgets from the Notification Center follows the same process as on the desktop.

Interestingly, you can add iPhone widgets to your Mac’s desktop without having the corresponding app on your computer. To do this, go to “System Settings,” then “Desktop and Dock,” and scroll to the “Widgets” section. Simply toggle the “Use iPhone Widgets” option to access your iPhone widgets from the widget browser.

Regarding the auto-sorting grocery list feature in Apple’s Reminders app, I’ve traditionally preferred third-party organization apps. However, the new reminder features, particularly the auto-sorting grocery list, are useful. To use this feature, click “Add List” at the bottom of the reminders page, name your list, and choose “Groceries” from the “List Type” drop-down menu. Once you set up your categories, you can start adding items to the list, which should automatically sort them. While the feature might have some bugs, persistence pays off, and items can be manually dragged to their correct categories if necessary.

One of the best aspects of having Apple products is the ability to text from my computer. This feature has been incredibly useful, especially when I need to focus on work and keep my phone away. The recent Sonoma update has improved the iMessage experience on computers, bringing it closer to the phone’s functionality.

The reply function in iMessage was a much-awaited feature on the computer. It allows you to swipe across a message and reply directly to it, which is particularly useful in complex conversations or busy group chats. To use this feature, swipe two fingers to the right until the reply option appears, or click the message with two fingers and select “Reply” from the menu.

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