15 Next Level Mac Utilities to Download

ByLance T. Lee

Feb 22, 2022

One of the reasons users love their Macs is because of all the customization you can do in macOS. Utilities are an integral part of this customization experience.

These are usually lightweight applications that run passively in the background of macOS to perform background tasks or create additional functionality. Almost all of the apps on this list don’t track any user data and score near perfect on the Mac App Store. I use each of these utilities daily or weekly!

Here are 15 next-level Mac utilities you should download:

Magnet

Magnet is the first utility I ever installed on my Mac. Magnet brings window snapping functionality loved by Windows 11 users to macOS. Once installed and permissions granted, you can drag application windows to any corner or trigger point on your desktop, and the application will snap into a quadrant, half, or third. Personally, I spend a lot of my day working in split screen and quadrants. Magnet makes it easy to hang windows and has been a huge boost in increasing my productivity.

Magnet has a rating of 4.9/5 on the Mac App Store and does not collect user data. The app developer even optimized it for Apple Silicon. Magnet is available in the Mac App Store for a $10.99 one-time purchase.

CopyClip

There are many clipboard managers available for Mac. I’m amazed how long it took me to install one on my MacBook. CopyClip is a simple app available from the Mac App Store that creates a list of all the text you’ve copied to your clipboard. CopyClip hangs out in your menu bar and presents you with a drop-down list of your clipboard history when you click on it.

CopyClip supports keyboard shortcuts and is rated 4.5/5 on the Mac App Store. The application natively supports Apple Silicon and is available for free on the Mac App Store. If you’re looking for a more modern user interface or keep up to 9999 clipboard history entries, consider buying CopyClip 2 for a $10.99 one-time purchase.

Bartender

Many of the utilities in this article will take up space in your menu bar. I’m not sure about you, but I hate having a cluttered menu bar. Bartender is a popular Mac utility that can hide unwanted menu bar icons. Additionally, Bartender can have a custom icon and run an automation to show certain menu bar icons on specific events. For example, the WiFi icon is hidden except when I’m not connected to WiFi.

Bartender offers native support for Apple Silicon, AppleScript and hotkeys. Bartender 4 is available from the developer website for $19.71and the app offers a 4-week trial.

Rocket

Rocket is one of my most used Mac utilities and the ultimate emoji picker. You can quickly select a specific emoji by typing a single or double colon followed by a word. For example, type :rocket to be prompted with a drop-down list containing space man, space woman, and rocket emojis. I find typing a colon followed by the emoji description to be much faster than clicking an emoji shortcut or typing a keyboard shortcut.

Rocket is developed by Matthew Palmer and is free to install from their website. A one-time upgrade to Rocket Pro costs around $13 and lets you add custom emoji search descriptions and fun-but-interesting personal emoji usage stats.

Amphetamine

Back on the Mac App Store, Amphetamine is an anti-sleeper app that prevents your Mac from going to sleep or activating its screen saver. Amphetamine places a small pill-like icon in your menu bar. Then, with a single secondary click, you can enable or disable the execution of amphetamine.

You can also set a specific amount of time you want the app to run. For example, I use amphetamine twice a week while listening to a lecture and doing other things away from my keyboard. Amphetamine is free download and has an impressive 4.9/5 rating.

HiddenMe

If you’re working remotely right now, you’ve probably had to share your screen during a video call or presentation. We are often ashamed to show off our cluttered desks, or rather people don’t see our private files. HiddenMe is a simple utility that hides all files on your desktop with just one click.

HiddenMe lives in the menu bar when active and does not track any user data. You can download HiddenMe for free on the Mac App Store. If you need support for multiple monitors, you can upgrade to the Pro version for a one-time in-app purchase of $2.79.

hand mirror

Hand Mirror is another great utility for remote workers. It activates your webcam and shows you a video stream without recording yourself with just one click. Hand Mirror lives in your menu bar and offers a handful of icons to choose from. The app is designed to allow users to check their looks before a video call.

Hand Mirror does not collect any user data and is a 4.9/5 rated utility on the Mac App Store. The app is also free download.

HazeOver

HazeOver is a neat macOS utility that will blur everything on your screen except for an app the user is using. This is great when you’re giving demos to a single app or when you want to help focus by only showing one app at a time. Don’t worry, your other apps are still active in the background and easily accessible by spotlight, dock, or trackpad gesture. HazeOver lives in your menu bar and can be activated with a single click.

Additionally, you can adjust HazeOver blur. The blur can vary from a certain degree of translucency to making the background completely visible. HazeOver is a self-proclaimed distraction dimmer app that does not collect user data. The app is rated 4.9/5 on the Mac App Store and is available with a $6.99 one-time purchase.

A thing

One Thing is about as easy as Mac utilities can get. One Thing will allow you to put any line of text you want in your menu bar. This line can be something inspirational, a priority task, or anything you want to keep in mind whenever you look at the top right corner of your Mac. The app is rated 5/5 on the Mac App Store and does not collect user data. You can install the app for free!

Strike Pro

The following three applications are convenient for the remote presenter. Keystroke Pro simply displays your keystrokes on your screen. When screen sharing during a video call or recording tutorials, presenters often need to explain to their audience which keys they click. Keystroke Pro displays keys as they are pressed. You can decide the size of the keys displayed on the screen, which section of the screen they appear in, and some other layout customizations.

Keystroke Pro is rated 4.2/5 and is a $19.99 one-time purchase on the Mac App Store. You can also download Keystroke Pro and three other apps as part of a Screen Recording Toolkit app bundle for $32.99.

Cursor Pro

Cursor Pro is part of the same Screen Recording Toolkit application set as Keystroke Pro. Cursor Pro places a colored circle around your cursor to make it easily identifiable during a screen sharing session, presentation, or screen recording. Additionally, Cursor Pro can change the color of the circle to indicate a cursor click.

Additionally, Cursor Pro can magnify an area of ​​your screen by clicking a modifier key. Like Keystroke Pro, Cursor Pro is rated 4.2/5 on the Mac App Store and does not track any user data. Cursor Pro is available for a one-time purchase of $11.99 when purchased alone.

Mirror Magnet

Mirror Magnet is the third and final app I will discuss from the same Screen Recording Toolkit app bundle. Mirror Magnet places your live video feed from your webcam anywhere on your screen. This comes in handy when you’re doing screen recordings or presentations and want your video to stay on screen.

You can select where Mirror Magnet will sit on your screen and the shape of the video window. The mirror magnet is $11.99 one-time purchase on the Mac App Store when purchased individually.

The small mouse

ToothFairy is a Mac utility that places your individual Bluetooth accessories in your menu bar. For example, as a Mac user with Magic Keyboard, Trackpad, AirPods, and Beats, I can have all four items appear in my Mac’s menu bar with a battery status indicator. ToothFairy lets you choose the Bluetooth accessories you want from your menu bar and select a unique icon to represent the accessory.

Finally, ToothFairy can be used as a simple one-click connect and disconnect tool to manage these Bluetooth devices. ToothFairy is rated 4.6/5 on the Mac App Store, does not collect any user data, and is a $8.49 one-time purchase.

iStats menu

If you’re an experienced Mac user, you might want a way to easily monitor your Mac’s resource usage. iStats Menu is a Mac utility that does just that. Living in your menu bar, the iStats menu places different icons for CPU, GPU, RAM, Battery, Storage, Network, and Sensor usage. Clicking on any of these icons will bring up a drop-down list with details about their performance. The app is a $13.99 one-time purchase on the Mac App Store.

Pareto Security

Last but not least, we have Pareto Security. Pareto Security is relatively new to the Mac utility scene and is the newest Mac utility I’ve downloaded. Pareto Security sits in your menu bar and runs automatic checks on various security settings on your Mac. For example, suppose a security feature is not enabled or a critical application is outdated. In this case, you will notice a small indicator in the menu bar icon and receive a notification.

Pareto Security is a unique little Mac security checklist utility that can help you make sure your Mac is secure. The development team frequently rolls out new features. The application is available for download from the development company’s website for approximately $22 for individual license and offers a 7-day free trial. Pareto Security also offers Teams plans with additional dashboard and monitoring features. If you subscribe to SetApp, you can download Pareto Security instead.


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