6 Best Ways to Configure and Use the Control Center on Mac

6 Best Ways to Configure and Use the Control Center on Mac

Configure and use the featured control center

After upgrading your Mac to Big Sur, you would have noticed the Control Center icon (which looks like two sliders stacked on top of each other) in the right corner of the menu bar. You can select it to launch Control Center at any time.

It’s also quite similar to what you get on the iPhone. You get options related to features like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, AirDrop listed at the top. Then come the sliders to adjust the brightness and volume of the screen.

Since Control Center is an area you’ll use frequently, here are several ways to configure it.

1. Reveal additional options

Each element of the control center comes with an additional layer of options. For example, the Wi-Fi control is not there to turn the internet on or off. Click outside the immediate area of ​​a listed item, and it will expand to reveal additional settings and options.

Configure and use Control Center 1

In the case of Wi-Fi, you’ll see a list of other Wi-Fi networks that you can easily connect to. On the other hand, the screen reveals nifty shortcuts to turn Dark Mode and Night Shift on or off – just like on the iPhone and iPad.

Configure and use Control Center 2

2. You can go back

After developing an item in Control Center, there is no visual indicator to go back. You can always click on any vacant area at the top to switch to the normal Control Center view. You can also click on the Control Center icon itself to do this.

3. Drag the commands to the menu bar

Hate having to use the control center all the time? Why not add the commands you use the most to the Mac menu bar? Start by clicking and maintaining control. Then drag and drop it on the menu bar. This option will remain in the menu bar.

Configure and use Control Center 3

Select the control from the menu bar and you’ll automatically see all of the options associated with it – this includes what you get when you expand it in the Control Center itself.

Configure and use Control Center 4

Note: Dragging an item to the menu bar does not remove it from Control Center.

If you want to remove a control from the menu bar later, drag it to the desktop while holding down the Command key.

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4. Add more items to the control center

Unlike its counterpart on the iPhone and iPad, the customization of the Control Center on the Mac is quite limited, at least at the time of writing. However, you can always add a few more controls to the menu bar.

Open the Apple menu and select System Preferences. Follow by selecting the Dock icon and menu bar. Then scroll down the side tab to the Other Modules section. You can select Battery, Accessibility, and Fast User Switching options and check the box next to Show in Control Center area. They will display the control center button.

Configure and use Control Center 5

If you want to remove them later, just go back to the Dock and Menu Bar screen and uncheck the Show in Control Center boxes.

5. Show in menu bar only when active

You can make certain commands appear in the menu bar, but only when they are active. This is great for things like Do Not Disturb, which won’t appear or clutter the menu bar unless it’s active.

Go to System Preferences> Dock & Menu Bar, and select a control. If you haven’t already dragged it to the menu bar, first check the box next to Show in menu bar. Follow by selecting the option titled When Active.

Configure and use Control Center 6

6. Use a different accent color

You can get away from the default blue colored icons in Control Center and spice things up by changing the Mac accent color. Open System Preferences, select General, and choose a color from the Accent Color section.

Configure and use Control Center 7

Of course, this will also end up changing the color of buttons, menu items, etc. all over the Mac.

Stay in control

The control center in macOS Big Sur isn’t as polished as the one you get on the iPhone and iPad, but it’s fairly new, so you can expect some rough edges. Also, support for shortcuts, more controls, and the ability to move items around would make it more exciting to use.

Hopefully Apple will continue to improve it in future updates. By the way, have you checked out the new macOS Big Sur widgets?


Is your Mac running slowly after installing macOS Big Sur? Check out these seven awesome optimization apps.

Last updated on Dec 1, 2020

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