5 Things You Never Knew You Could do on a Mac

From making a call to getting directions, there's lots more you can do your Mac laptop.

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If you're the owner of a Mac laptop and another Apple device, whether it's an iPhone or iPad, you might be surprised to learn you can perform all of these five time-saving tricks.

View Live photos

Got an iPhone 6S or an iPhone SE? You can take Live Photos. These are tiny video clips that record the 1.5 seconds before and after you press the shutter button to create the short clip. When you tap on these pictures in your iPhone picture gallery they play. You can also view these on your Mac: save the Live Photos to iCloud, and then sync them to your MacBook. Open the Photos app and scroll through to a Live Photo. Hover the cursor on it and it will play.

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Make calls and send messages

If your iPhone and Mac are connected to the same Wi-Fi network, you can make calls straight from your MacBook rather than reaching for your phone. Viewing a website and want to call a number listed on the site? 

Just highlight the number with the cursor, right-click, then select the option which lists the number you highlighted, followed by Call using iPhone, this will place the call through your iPhone but the call can be heard through the Mac's speakers and the microphone lets you talk to the person on the other end of the line. Alternatively, open the FaceTime app and search for a Contact. Press the Phone icon next to their name and then select Call and their phone number to begin making the call.You can also send and receive text messages from your MacBook. You'll need to turn on Text Message Forwarding first. To do this open the Settings on your iPhone and select Messages, followed by Text Message Forwarding and make sure your MacBook is switched on. You'll be asked to enter a code displayed on your MacBook. On your MacBook, open the Message app and press the Compose button, select the recipient from your contacts list and type the message, then hit Return to send it.

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Send directions to your iPhone

You're using your Mac to look up directions to the restaurant you're off to tonight and then you realise you've got to leave. Many of us would scrawl down the postcode and then when we've left the house, open the maps app on your iPhone and then type in the postcode looking for directions. But, it's actually a lot simpler than that. Once you've opened Maps on your MacBook and got the directions, press the Share button that looks like a rectangle with an arrow from the top of the screen. Choose whether you want the directions sent to your iPhone or iPad. After a few seconds, you'll receive a notification on your device's screen with the directions. Just slide it and the app will open up with the directions all ready to go.

Carry on your work on an iPhone or iPad

Likewise, if you've started a new note, Pages document or even a new contact on your Mac but you've walked away from the laptop and are near your iPhone or iPad, you can carry on working on the device. If your iPhone is locked, the icon for the app you've been using will be displayed in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen. Just swipe the screen from the left hand edge to launch the app and carry on where you left off. Alternatively, if your device is unlocked, double press the Home Button and the app and the name of the device you started it on will be displayed at the bottom of the screen so just tap it to recommence work. If you've started a Note, Pages document or a new contact on your iPhone or iPad and want to carry on working on your Macbook, just select the app from the Dock at the bottom of the screen or press Command and Tab to pick up where you left off.

Close websites on your iPhone

You can close down browser tabs that are open on your iPhone or iPad from your Mac as long as it's connected to the same Wi-Fi connection. Safari has to be switched on in iCloud on all your devices to do this, but once it is, open Safari on your Mac and press the Tab View button which looks like two squares one behind the other. At the bottom of the screen there will be a list of the tabs open on your other iPhone and iPads. To close them simply hover the cursor over the far right-edge, then press the cross that appears and the window will be closed on your smartphone

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