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With the release of macOS 11 Big Sur, Apple welcomed a primarily iOS-focused feature to the desktop: Control Center. Now that it’s been available for a few months, it’s time to get your thoughts.

Apple has been tweaking Control Center on iOS for years now. What started off as a function users would launch by swiping up from the bottom of their iPhone screen has transformed into one that’s accessible by swiping down from the right corner of the display. It’s also changed in design, layout, and strengths/weaknesses.

Some may argue that Control Center has become increasingly helpful, and they’re probably right. Especially as it has become even more customizable, letting users choose which elements of their software are quickly accessible in the drop-down panel. Need to quickly activate Low Power Mode for the battery?

Adjusting screen brightness, volume, activating Active Noise Cancellation for AirPods Pro/Max, and so many other things are easy to do thanks to Control Center.

There are times I miss the days when I could just slide up from the bottom of the screen and reach the feature, though. I’m not even using a big phone (I went to the iPhone 12 Pro from the iPhone 12 Pro Max because that phone was just too big for me in day-to-day usage), but sometimes sliding down from the right corner isn’t the easiest thing to do. And I think I use Control Center a lot less nowadays than I used to because of this change. I haven’t been tracking it or anything, and the old version of Control Center feels so long ago that’s genuinely hard to remember, but I do know I use Control Center a lot less to interact with playing media than I did before.

I really enjoyed the dedicated panel for music/media playback in the old Control Center. It had great album artwork right up front, and easy controls for playback and volume control. The only “bad” part was that you had to slide up to get to Control Center and then slide over to get to the media panel. Not the best, but definitely not a dealbreaker.

Resource: How to use and customize Control Center on macOS Big Sur

Now, when you want to see full album artwork within Control Center you need to slide down, then long-press on the block for what’s playing. That will open another panel that takes up most of the screen, with the album artwork front-and-center and playback controls/volume just below that.

All this to say that I wish I could customize Control Center even more. Let me choose what each individual panel shows me when I access the feature. I’d love to be able to just slide Control Center into place and see a large “widget” in the top that shows me album artwork and media playback controls, rather than just the small block with the text of what’s playing and playback controls. I don’t think that’s a huge change, but it sure would be a welcomed one for me.

So Apple brought Control Center from iOS/iPadOS over to macOS, and, at the same time changed the keyboard on its newest Mac products. The newest MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, equipped with the M1 processor, lost the keyboard brightness key option in the function row. I used those keys all the time, and now I have to rely on Control Center to do the same thing. I’m not a huge fan of this change at all, and if I could remove Control Center to get those physical keys back, I would.

But what’s really funny is that there’s a rumor swirling around from earlier this year that Apple plans on tweaking Control Center in iOS to be more like Control Center in macOS. The “new” design for iPhone and iPad would be more compact in general, but with all of the options one is used to accessing in the panel. I’m not entirely sure why Apple feels like Control Center needs to be more compact on iOS and iPadOS, but it will be interesting to see what the feature looks like if that does end up happening.

How do you feel about Control Center on Mac? Are you happy to see the feature make the leap to Apple’s desktop/laptop offerings? If you could change it, how would you tweak it to better suit your needs/wants?

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How To Customize Control Center On Apple Watch

The Control Center on your Apple Watch provides quick access to some of the most frequently used features, such as turning on Do Not Disturb or Airplane Mode, checking the battery level of your watch, using the flashlight, and more. You can customize the Apple Watch control center to arrange or hide icons in the order you prefer. Further, the latest watchOS 7 lets you add and remove toggles too. So let’s learn more.

What Are The Icons in Apple Watch Control Center?

Before we proceed, here is a list of all the different icons visible in the Control Center and what they mean:

Cellular: toggles on or off the cellular connection on Apple Watches that support it

WiFi: connects or disconnects the WiFi network

Ping your iPhone: Makes your paired iPhone beep loudly to help find it if misplaced

Battery Percentage: Shows the battery level on your Apple Watch

Silent Mode: toggles on or off silent mode on your Apple Watch

Lock: Locks your Apple Watch so that you have to enter the passcode to unlock it

Do Not Disturb: Toggles on or off DND mode on your Apple Watch

Walkie Talkie: Enables or disables walkie talkie availability

Theater Mode: Turns on or off theater mode in which your Apple Watch will not light up with notifications

Water Lock: Enables the water lock to prevent the watch from responding to accidental touches from water when swimming. Only available on Apple Watch Series 2 and later

Flashlight: Turns on or off the flashlight on your Apple Watch

Airplane Mode: Toggle on or off flight mode

AirPlay: Allows you to choose the audio output to use with your Apple Watch

Sleep tracking: Allows you to set up and use Sleep Tracking. Only on watchOS 7

How to Open and Close the Control Centre on Apple Watch

You can’t open Control Center from the Home screen on your Apple Watch. Instead, press the Digital Crown to go to the watch face or open an app. Then, to open Control Center:

From the watch face, swipe up.

From other screens, touch and hold the bottom of the screen, then swipe up

To close, swipe down from the top of your Watch screen or just press the Digital Crown. 

How to Customize Control Center in Apple Watch

You can rearrange the Control Center icons in the way you prefer. Here’s how to go about it.

Open the Control Center on your Apple Watch and tap on Edit.

Drag the icons around to arrange them as you like

Once you’re satisfied, tap Done.

How to Hide Control Center Tiles in watchOS 7

By default, all toggles are enabled on your Apple Watch. But if you want to keep things organized, you can remove the control center toggles that you don’t use. Just follow the steps below.

Open the Control Center on your Apple Watch and tap on Edit

To remove a toggle, tap the ‘Minus’ sign that appears on it. Some toggles cannot be removed, such as WiFi and Airplane Mode

Once you’re satisfied, scroll down and tap on Done.

How to Add Control Center tiles in watchOS 7

If you want to add control center toggles back after removing them, just follow the steps below.

Open the Control Center and tap on Edit

To add a toggle, scroll down to the ‘More’ section. Tap the ‘Plus’ sign next to the icons that you want to add back

Once you’re satisfied, scroll down and tap on Done.

Signing off

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Author Profile


Mehak has a master’s degree in communication and over ten years of writing experience. Her passion for technology and Apple products led her to iGeeksBlog, where she specializes in writing product roundups and app recommendations for fellow Apple users. When not typing away on her MacBook Pro, she loves being lost in a book or out exploring the world.

What Do You Normally Use Your Smartphone For?

Inventing the mobile phone was such a great idea; it’s so helpful to always have a phone handy whenever we need it. But that’s not all we use our phones for these days.

Admit it, it’s been a long time since you only used your smartphone for placing and receiving phone calls. We use it for texting, social media, as a camera, for listening to music, etc. We asked our writers, “Other than as an actual phone, what do you normally use your smartphone for?”

Our Opinion

Robert reports that he uses his smartphone for reading the news, listening to podcasts, as an interval training time, and for “ritually Googling ‘trump’ upon waking up in the morning to see what mad things he’s done/said/tweeted during the night.”

Phil says he uses his mostly all day in one way or another. He uses it as a music player, a clock, a digital recorder, and to listen to radio/podcasts. Additionally, he uses it as a cooking timer, meditation assistant, calculator, satnav, and camera, and to text. He also uses Facetime “to talk to the kids as a substitute for having them come over and litter my house with their stuff.”

Damien, like Phil, admits the one thing he doesn’t use his for very often is to make phone calls. He uses his phone “more like a mini PC where I check email, read news, listen to music, watch videos, play games, browse the Web, etc.”

Fabio jokes that he uses his smartphone for everything and more seriously, says he uses it as a calculator, alarm clock, to watch videos, to listen to music, to go online, for videoconferencing, etc.

Vamsi says that other than for making phone calls, he uses his as a dedicated audiobook player, for reading tech news, listening to podcasts, and chatting on WhatsApp.

Kenneth uses his as a WiFi hotspot and loves it that with Android, he can connect up to eight devices.

I’m with him on that. And now that my iPad can take phone calls and SMS via WiFi, I don’t need my phone as much. But what I do use it for is as a second screen while working, like if I want to look something up in Evernote while I’m on a different app and don’t want to multi-task on the iPad, and I, too, use it as a hotspot. I also use it in bed to track my sleep, read e-books, as an alarm clock, and use it the next morning to track my weight. The one unique thing I use it for is as a heart rate monitor. I have to track my heart rate twice daily and find it easier to use my iPhone.

Your Opinion

Laura Tucker

Laura has spent nearly 20 years writing news, reviews, and op-eds, with more than 10 of those years as an editor as well. She has exclusively used Apple products for the past three decades. In addition to writing and editing at MTE, she also runs the site’s sponsored review program.

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17 Things You Can Do With Quicktime Player On Mac

Loop a video

Zoom in on a video

When you’re playing a clip and want to zoom in, all you have to do is press the Command + Plus (+) keys. And to do the opposite, hit Command + Minus (-) keys.

Play multiple videos at the same time

You can open multiple videos in separate QuickTime windows and play or pause them all together in one stroke. It’s very cool. Give it a try:

Hold the Command key and select several videos in your Mac’s folder.

Now, hold the Command key and hit the return/enter key to play or pause all those videos at once.

Play videos from the internet

Since QuickTime is a video player, you can obviously open most downloaded video and audio files in it.

See metadata of media files

After you open a video in QuickTime Player, simply press Command + I to see its details like original resolution, size, data rate, current size/dimensions, video & audio format, FPS (frames per second), aspect ratio, audio channel, and more.

Record your Mac’s screen

Record your iPhone’s screen or FaceTime, WhatsApp, and other calls

iOS has a built-in screen recorder, but at times, like when you want to record a FaceTime call or WhatsApp video call, you can connect your iPhone to your Mac and record the call with audio. Here’s how:

Take screenshots or screen recordings of your Apple TV

Ever wanted to grab what you see on your Apple TV screen? It’s easy. Just make sure your Apple TV and Mac are on the same Wi-Fi network, and use QuickTime to take a screenshot or make a movie recording.

Record videos

Use it as an audio recorder

Mac has a built-in Voice Memos app, but that’s not your only option. You can record high-quality audio in QuickTime Player:

Open QuickTime.

Hit the tiny arrow next to the red record button and choose Maximum quality.

Finally, hit the white-red record button.

Your Mac will now record 44100 Hz, uncompressed Linear PCM 24-bit AIFF-C audio.

Edit a video

Merge two or more videos into one

Open the first video in QuickTime Player.

To change the order of a clip, select it on the timeline and drag it before the other video.

Split a video

Open the video in QuickTime Player on Mac.

Now, drag the red line to the position from where you want to split the video clip.

Next, choose the other unwanted clip and hit the delete key to get rid of it.

Reduce the video quality or change video codecs

Suppose you have a 4K video that you want to downgrade to 1080p so that it can be played on low-end phones and tablets. Instead of downloading an extra app, you can let QuickTime handle this. Here’s how:

Open the video in QuickTime Player on Mac.

Extract the audio from a video file

Create a video or GIF using an image sequence

If you took many photos in a sequence, like burst photos, you can turn them all into a video using these steps:

Open QuickTime Player on your Mac.

Once you have the short video of a few seconds, you can use sites like chúng tôi to convert it into a GIF.

Save a video frame as an image

Why take a screenshot when you can save the video frame as a photo? Let me show you how:

Open a video in QuickTime Player on Mac.

Pause the playback and scroll to the frame you want to save as a picture. Use the arrow keys for precision.

Finally, open any app like Notes, Keynote, Pages, Word, etc., where you can paste the image and press Command + V.

Bonus: Best QuickTime alternatives for watching videos

Finally, even though QuickTime Player is a feature-packed and free app, you may want to know about a few excellent alternatives, like when you have to play files in MKV format. Here are two that I use on my Mac in addition to Apple’s built-in video player:

Fun fact: QuickTime player was also available for Windows PC but was discontinued in 2023. However, you can still download QuickTime 7.7.9 for Windows from Apple’s official website.

How To Use Do Not Disturb On Your Iphone

Smartphones have made it much easier to communicate with people around us throughout the day. Text messages, pings, and social media notifications from various apps keep popping up on our iPhone’s screen throughout the day. While it helps us stay connected with our near and dear ones, sometimes it distracts us and causes us to lose concentration. Even if your iPhone is on mute, the screen still lights up every time a new notification or call comes in. And that’s exactly where the iPhone’s Do Not Disturb focus mode comes in handy. This focus mode silences all the notifications and calls on your iPhone whenever it is turned on — even the screen won’t light up. That said, in this article, we have detailed how to effectively use iPhone’s Do Not Disturb mode to boost your productivity.

Use Do Not Disturb Mode on iPhone (2023)

Before learning how to use the Do Not Disturb Mode, let us first tell you that you won’t lose any app notifications while this focus mode is enabled. You can unlock your iPhone and view all the notifications later on. Further, Do Not Disturb is now linked to Focus mode on your iPhone. And there are two ways to turn it on – you can turn it on manually or set it to turn on automatically. Along with how to enable Do Not Disturb mode on iPhone, we have also explained how you can customize it as per your preferences.

How to Turn on Do Not Disturb Manually on iPhone

Go through the following steps to turn on Do Not Disturb mode on your iPhone manually:

1. Unlock your iPhone and swipe down from the top right corner of the screen to pull down the “Control Center.”

4. From the list of options, tap on “Do Not Disturb” to enable it.

That’s it. You have successfully turned on the Do Not Disturb mode on your iPhone. Also, there are numerous tweaks you can make to the Do Not Disturb mode to use it more effectively. We will talk about these in a later section.

How to Set Do Not Disturb Mode to Turn on Automatically

Apart from turning it on manually, iPhone allows you to create a routine to automatically turn the Do Not Disturb mode On and Off. Users can set this focus mode to automatically turn On when going to bed and turn it Off when they wake up by adding a schedule. Here, we have explained how you can do this:

1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone and head to the “Focus” option.

3. Next, scroll down until you reach the “Set A Schedule“ section and tap the “Add Schedule” button.

4. Here, you will see a list of options to choose from such as Time, Location, and App.

5. Tap on the “Time” tab to set a schedule for automating the Do Not Disturb mode. You can set the time duration using the “From” and “To” options, along with the days on which you want this schedule to work.

6. If you want the Do Not Disturb Mode to turn on at a certain location automatically, tap on “Location“ and choose a location by entering an “Address” in the search bar.

Now, whenever the conditions you set here are met, the Do Not Disturb mode will automatically be enabled on your iPhone. That said, let’s look at what other settings you can customize for this focus mode.

Customize Do Not Disturb Mode on Your iPhone

One of the best things about iPhone’s Do Not Disturb mode is that you control and customize it as per your whims. You can enable specific contacts to bypass the Do Not Disturb mode, customize app notifications, and focus filters. Below, we have detailed all the customizations you can do with iPhone’s Do Not Disturb mode.

Customize Notifications from People

To set contacts for whom the Do Not Disturb mode will not apply, follow the below steps

3. Choose the “Silence Notifications From” option to mute all notifications from specific contacts. If you want to receive only calls and no notifications from the chosen contacts, turn on the “Allow Calls from Silenced People” toggle.

4. Tap the “+” icon to add contacts to make a list of people you want to silence notifications from when you enable Do Not Disturb mode.

5. Alternatively, Choose “Allow Notifications From” to receive notifications from chosen contacts when using Do Not Disturb on your iPhone.

6. Under this option, you can also allow calls from select people by tapping the “Allow Calls From” tab and choosing an option from the list that appears.

Customize App Notifications

1. Open the “Do Not Disturb” focus mode settings on your iPhone and tap on the “App” tab on the right side.

2. Like the people section, you will see two options on the following screen — “Silence Notifications From” and “Allow Notifications From.”

3. Choose the “Silence Notifications From” option to stop receiving notifications from selected apps. You can toggle on the “Time Sensitive Notification” to see notifications from the silenced apps. Though, remember they could be distracting and defeat the purpose of the Do Not Disturb mode.

4. To make an allowed list for apps, tap the “+” icon and choose the app you want to add to the allowed list. We would suggest not adding social media apps to this list, as the notifications from these apps can distract you from your work.

Customize Focus Filters

Finally, you can also add Focus Filters, such as App Filters and System Filters, in the Do Not Disturb focus mode. These filters allow you to modify in-app and system settings when a focus mode is enabled. Focus Filters allow granular control over different focus modes. While app filters allow you to customize apps when the Do Not Disturb mode is enabled, system filters offer overall setting customization options. Follow the steps below to learn how to add Focus Filters:

1. Open the Do Not Disturb settings screen on your iPhone and scroll down until you find the “Focus Filters” option. Now, tap the “Add Filter” button

2. Here, you will see two sections — one for “App Filters,” and the other for “System filters.”

3. Under the App Filters, you will find four apps you can add Do Not Disturb mode filters –

Calendar: To choose which calendar to show and when.

Mail: To set mail focus filters 

Messages: To allow or deny message notifications from selected people.

Safari: To allow a particular tab group to be used when the Do Not Disturb mode is turned on.

Appearance: Sets dark or light appearance when the Do Not Disturb mode is on.

Low Power Mode: Automatically enable or disable low power mode with Do Not Disturb mode.

How to Enable Do Not Disturb from the Lock Screen

iOS 16 brought with it the ability to customize the lock screen of your iPhone and add widgets to the lock screen. You can now set multiple lock screens with different wallpapers and home screens. While this is no news for many, some users might still be unaware that they can link the “Do Not Disturb” focus mode to a particular lock screen. This means the Do Not Disturb mode will automatically turn on when a user switches the lock screen on their iPhone. Here, we have explained how you can link Do Not Disturb mode to a particular lock screen:

1. Unlock your iPhone and long press on the lock screen to enter the lock screen editing mode.

2. Now, tap on the “Focus” icon at the bottom center of the screen.

3. Next, a new “Link Focus” pop-up window will appear with the focus modes list. Tap on “Do Not Disturb” to link this focus mode to the current lock screen. Then, tap “X” at the top right, and you will see a Do Not Disturb icon at the bottom of your screen. This indicates that the Do Not Disturb mode has been linked with the lock screen.

How to Enable Do Not Disturb Mode Using Siri

1. First and Foremost, activate “Siri” on your iPhone by saying “Hey Siri” if you have enabled it or long-press the power button.

2. Once Siri is activated, say “Turn On Do Not Disturb,” and Siri will revert with “Ok, Do Not Disturb is now on.” You will also see a “Do Not Disturb On” pop-up at the top center of the screen.

How to Turn Off Do Not Disturb Mode on iPhone

You can easily deactivate the Do Not Disturb Mode on your iPhone using the Control Center. Below, we have explained how:

Swipe down from the top right corner of your iPhone’s screen to access the “Control Center.”

Tap on the “Do Not Disturb” tile and then tap on “Do Not Disturb” again to turn off the focus mode.

3. Alternatively, you can ask Siri to “Turn Off Do Not Disturb” for you. Siri will revert with “OK, I’ve turned Do Not Disturb off,” along with the “Do Not Disturb Off” pop-up.

iPhone Do Not Disturb Mode: FAQs

What To Do If You Use Two

In today’s day and age, there are chances that your various passwords can be compromised. This can happen even if you have taken just about every precaution possible.

One of the most prevalent and popular precautions has been the introduction of two-factor authentication (2FA). For the unaware, 2FA requires a second input from the user whenever signing into your account.

Thankfully, Apple has joined the movement in recent years in an effort to keep Apple ID’s protected. However, there are sometimes where you forget your password, don’t have your device handy, and are locked out.

We are going to take a look at what you can do in the event that you are locked out and can’t sign in or reset your Apple ID password.

What is Two-Factor Authentication?

In the past, your username and password was the only way that someone could log into your account. This was obviously not a great way to keep your private information and out of the wrong hands.

Two-Step Verification was the first way to add an extra layer of security. This basically required you to enter a code that appeared on your device.

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) is an even more secure method for logging into your various accounts. In Apple’s world, 2FA is built directly into your various Apple devices, including iPhones, Macs, Apple Watch’s, and more.

Trusted devices

Trusted phone numbers

Verification codes

What to do if 2FA is not available?

From time to time, you may run into a situation where the 2FA method is not available. Apple has included a few different ways for you to still be able to log into your account.

Account Recovery

If you have already exhausted the other methods of accessing your account, you may feel helpless. Luckily, there is one more option for you to try before you give up altogether.

As expected, you can apply for account recovery from either your iOS or macOS device. In order to request account recovery on your iOS device, follow these steps:

Open Settings.

Select Sign into your device.

Tap Don’t have an Apple ID or forgot it.

Tap Forgot Apple ID.

Enter your Apple ID and tap Next.

Enter the phone number associated with your account.

Follow the onscreen steps.

If you need to request Account Recovery from your Mac, follow these steps:

Select iCloud.

Enter the phone number associated with your account.

Follow the onscreen steps.

Play the waiting game

Now that you have applied for an account recovery, there’s not much else you can do. Apple will send an email to your Apple ID account, which is a confirmation of the request.

This email will also give you an idea as to when the recovery will be processed. The problem is, this process could take at least a few days. Obviously, this is less than ideal since you won’t have access to your account.

Once the process has been completed, you will receive either a text message or phone call. From there, you will be provided with instructions that need to be followed in order to regain access to your account.

Get your account back quicker

As we stated above, it’s obviously not ideal to be locked out of your Apple ID for more than a few days. Apple also makes it possible for you to try to speed up the account recovery process.

In order to do this, you will need to have the same credit card that’s on file with Apple, on-hand. From there, you can head over to chúng tôi and look for an option to confirm your credit card details.

If you are given this option, you will be able to enter your card information and speed up the process. However, if you are continually prompted to enter security information, you’ll need to contact the card issuer.

There’s no telling exactly how much quicker entering your card information is. Nonetheless, it is another step that you can take to try to speed things up a bit.


After you have been able to regain access to your account, we are sure that you may be tempted to disable 2FA. We cannot stress enough how important it is to not do that.

2FA serves a great purpose and works to keep your account protected all of the time. So once your account has been re-opened, don’t do anything rash and remove this from your account.

If you continue to have issues after applying for account recovery, you’ll need to contact Apple Support. Be sure to let us know if you run into any more issues and if you have any questions about the process.

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