Use the keyboard, mouse or trackpad of your Mac to control up to two other nearby Mac or iPad devices, and work between them seamlessly.
When using Universal Control, each device shows its own screen and apps, but you can use a single keyboard, mouse or trackpad to move the pointer, type and even copy content between them.
If you want your iPad to extend or mirror the desktop of your Mac, use Sidecar instead.
Turn on Universal Control
Before continuing, make sure each device meets theUniversal Control system requirements, including that each is signed in with the same Apple ID. Then follow these steps to turn on Universal Control.
On your Mac
- Choose Apple menu > System Settings (or System Preferences).
- Click Displays.
- If using macOS Ventura or later, click the Advanced buttonat the bottom of the settings window.
- Turn on "Allow your pointer and keyboard to move between any nearby Mac or iPad". Leave theother Universal Control settingsturned on for now.
On your iPad
- Open the Settings app.
- Tap General, then tap AirPlay & Handoff.
- Turn on Cursor and Keyboard. This setting is only available on iPad models that support Universal Control.
Connect your devices
After turning on Universal Control, you can connect (link) each device:
- Put your devices near each other and make sure they're awake and unlocked.
- Use your mouse or trackpad to move the pointer past the left or right edge of your screen in the general direction of the iPad or other Mac, even if the other device is positioned below your screen. You can arrange your displaysmore precisely later.
- As you move the pointer past the edge of the screen, the other device shows the pointer beginning to push through to its screen. To connect to that device, push the pointer all the way through.
If you can't connect a device in this way, follow the steps in the next section.
Arrange your displays
Arrange your displays to adjust where your devices think they are relative to each other. You can then move the pointer more precisely in the direction of each display.
- On your primary Mac, choose Apple menu > System Settings (or System Preferences).
- Click Displays.
- If using macOS Ventura or later, click the Arrange button.
- The settings window will show an image representing each device's display.Drag the image of your iPad or other Mac into its position in relation to the other displays – to their left, to their right or below them. A Mac display can also be positioned above other displays.Can't see your display?
Use your keyboard, mouse or trackpad between devices
When your devices are connected with Universal Control, you can use the keyboard, mouse or trackpad of any connected device to work between all devices seamlessly.
When moved to an iPad, the pointer becomes a dot representing the tip of your finger.Use your mouse or trackpad to click or click and hold, just as you would use your finger to touch or touch and hold.
You can also use mosttrackpad gestures for iPad. Or take actions such as these:
- Open the Dock:Move the pointer past the bottom of the screen.
- Go Home:While using an app, move the pointer past the bottom of the screen.After the Dock appears, move the pointer past the bottom of the screen again.
- Open the App Switcher:While on the Home Screen, move the pointer past the bottom of the screen, thenmove the pointer past the bottom of the screen again.
- Open Control Centre:click the status icons in the top right-hand corner of the screen.
- Open Notification Centre:click the time and date in the top left-hand corner of the screen. Or move the pointer past the top of the screen, unless your iPad display is below another display.
- Open search:while on the Home Screen, scroll down.
To switch to using the onscreen keyboard on your iPad, tap or click the keyboard iconon the iPad screen. You can resume typing on the physical keyboard at any time.
Drag and drop between devices
Universal Control supports using your mouse or trackpad to drag and drop between devices. Examples:
- Sketch with ApplePencil on your iPad, then use your mouse or trackpad to drag the drawing into Keynote on your Mac.
- Drag a photo from your Mac into a conversation in Messages on your iPad.
- Drag files from one Mac to another Mac, or drag files to theFiles app on your iPad, where they'll be available to other iPad apps that support them.
A prohibitory symbolnext to the item you're dragging means you can't drop the item at the current location. Instead of dragging, you may be able to use the keyboard to copy (Command-C) the item on one device, then paste (Command-V) it on the other device.
Disconnect your devices
To disconnect a specific device from your Mac, take either of these actions:
- Put the device that you want to disconnect to sleep.
- Click Display inControl Centre, then choose your connected Mac or iPad under Link Keyboard and Mouse. Or use the Add Display (+) pop-up menu in Displays settings to do the same.
To disconnect all devices, press Control-Option-Command-Delete on your keyboard.
If you need help
When arranging your displays, if you can't see a display, try these solutions:
- If using macOS Ventura or later, click the add button (+)in the top right-hand corner of the Displays settings window, then choose your iPad or other Mac from the menu.
- If using macOS Monterey,click the Add Display button the bottom left-hand corner of the Displays preferences window, then choose your iPad or other Mac from the menu.
- Make sure each device meets theUniversal Control system requirementsand is using the latestsoftware updates for Macandsoftware updates for iPad.
- Make sure your devices are near each other – ideally within 1 metre (3 feet).
- Put your devices to sleep, then wake them up.
- Turn off Universal Control on each device, then restart each device and turn Universal Control back on.
Universal Control system requirements
Universal Control works with the following devices and operating systems. It requires one Mac and up to two others of the following Mac or iPad devices.
macOSMonterey 12.4 or later
- MacBook introduced in 2016 or later
- MacBookPro introduced in 2016 orlater
- MacBookAir introduced in 2018 or later
- Macmini introduced in 2018 or later
- iMac introduced in 2017 or later, or iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2015)
- MacPro introduced in 2019 or later
iPadOS15.4 or later
- iPadPro (all models)
- iPad (6th generation) or later
- iPadAir (3rd generation) or later
- iPadmini (5th generation) or later
- Each device must besigned in with the same AppleIDusingtwo-factor authentication. Universal Control does not supportManaged AppleIDs.
- Each device must be within 10 metres (30 feet) of each other and have Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and Handoff turned on.
- Your iPad must not be sharing its mobile data connection and your Mac must not be sharing its internet connection.
Universal Control includes these additional settings in Displays settings on Mac:
- “Push through the edge of a display to connect a nearby Mac or iPad” allows your pointer to push through to connect to another device. When it’s deselected, you can still connect by clicking Display inControl Centre, then choosing your Mac or iPad under Link Keyboard and Mouse. Or use the Add Display (+) pop-up menu in Displays settings to do the same.
- "Automatically reconnect to any nearby Mac or iPad" allows your Mac to reconnect to nearby devices automatically. When it’s deselected, you can still connect to other devices from Control Centre or Displays settings.