MacStories Team

238 posts on MacStories since July 2011

Articles by the MacStories team.

Founded by Federico Viticci in April 2009, MacStories attracts millions of readers every month thanks to in-depth, personal, and informed coverage that offers a balanced mix of Apple news, app reviews, and opinion.

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THIS WEEK'S SPONSOR:

ONLYOFFICE

Create, edit and, collaborate on desktop and mobile for free


Create, Edit, and Collaborate on Documents on Your Desktop and Mobile Devices with Your Free Office Suite by ONLYOFFICE [Sponsor]

ONLYOFFICE is the premier productivity suite for desktop and mobile that’s also open-source and free. The suite is a powerful choice for anyone who works across multiple devices, including Apple hardware and Windows and Linux devices. That means whatever device or system you’re using, you’ve got ONLYOFFICE close at hand to help you get things done. ONLYOFFICE is fully-compatible with M1 Macs too, where it’s blazingly fast.

ONLYOFFICE offers a complete set of word-processing, spreadsheet, and presentation tools that support all the file formats you’ll need, including DOCX, ODT, XLSX, ODS, CSV, PPTX, ODP, and more. What’s more, with its tabbed interface, ONLYOFFICE lets you work efficiently with multiple file types at one time. The suite also features a deep set of sophisticated tools for editing and formatting your documents, so your work always looks fantastic.

ONLYOFFICE is security and privacy-minded too. The suite includes password protection, digital signature support, watermarking, and more. They’re features that provide the peace of mind that your data is yours and only shared by you when and how you choose.

Collaboration and extensibility are core to ONLYOFFICE. The suite features a rich ecosystem of third-party plugins that support other services like Google Translate, YouTube, DocuSign, cloud storage providers, WordPress, and many more. With ONLYOFFICE Workspace, Nexcloud, ownCloud, or Seafile, you can collaborate with your colleagues on documents too, editing, commenting, and reviewing together in real-time.

If you haven’t checked out ONLYOFFICE yet, now is the time to do so. Visit ONLYOFFICE’s website today to learn more about how you can integrate this powerful and free suite of open-source applications into your workflow.

Our thanks to ONLYOFFICE for sponsoring MacStories this week.


UpNote: The Best Note-Taking App Across Platforms [Sponsor]

UpNote is an elegant and powerful note-taking app that works across every major platform, making it the perfect solution for your note-taking needs. Designed to make it easy to take notes anywhere and stay focused, UpNote combines a beautiful interface with a fast, fluid workflow for a refined and reliable note-taking experience. The app is also continuously updated to support the latest technologies on all platforms with new and innovative features.

The app works on iOS, Android, the Mac, and Windows, making it an excellent solution for anyone who needs access to their notes across multiple platforms thanks to the app’s fast, reliable sync. UpNote works online and off, too, so you’re always able to capture your thoughts. With colorful themes and many font choices, you can make UpNote your very own, organizing notes into notebooks, which can be nested, adding hashtags to notes, and pinning and bookmarking notes for quick access. It’s a structure that’s supplemented by powerful search and sorting to make navigating even the largest collections of notes a breeze.

UpNote has all of your note-taking needs covered. The app offers a web clipper extension so you can quickly save links and content as you browse and research on the web. There’s a focus mode that eliminates distractions, so you can capture your thoughts quickly and efficiently, too. There’s even a great solution for longer notes: a table of contents feature that makes navigating long notes a breeze. The app can also be locked, which makes it perfect for journaling.

Switching to UpNote is easy, with powerful import functionality that can handle Evernote, Markdown, and other formats. UpNote’s text editor is fully featured, too, with support for rich-text, bi-directional linking, to-do lists, images, attachments, tables, and code blocks. Of course, the app supports Markdown syntax as well. And, when you need to use your notes elsewhere, you can export them as Markdown text, HTML, or PDFs. Combined with its cross-platform support and its stunning design, UpNote is a powerhouse note-taking app like none other.

Now is the perfect time to try UpNote. The app includes subscription and lifetime upgrade options, and for a limited time, MacStories readers can purchase UpNote’s lifetime premium upgrade for 30% off. This is an amazing deal, so don’t delay. Go check out UpNote now and take advantage of this offer.

Our thanks to UpNote for sponsoring MacStories this week.


CleanMyMac X: Make Sure You Can Trust Your Mac [Sponsor]

In these uncertain times, the only person who we can truly rely on is ourselves, more specifically, you and your computer. But can your Mac help you reach your goals? Is it in good enough shape, fast, and organized?

To be sure, you need CleanMyMac X from MacPaw. It’s the ideal decluttering app for Mac.

CleanMyMac X isn’t just one tool, though. It’s an entire suite of powerful utilities designed to tune up your Mac:

  • It includes 49 tools to find and delete invisible junk.
  • It removes junk that’s slowing your Mac down, so it always runs at its maximum speed.
  • It organizes disk space, too, showing your large hidden folders.
  • It can free up tons of space, so your Mac never runs into storage issues.
  • It’s also the perfect tool to get your Mac ready for macOS Monterey too.
  • Finally, it fights Mac-specific malware and adware.

There are a lot of other Mac cleaning utilities available, but CleanMyMac X stands out with its award-winning, elegant design that makes it a pleasure to use every day. In fact, in 2021, CleanMyMac was honored with the Red Dot Award and the UX Design Award. It’s so enjoyable to use, and you’ll be discovering new ways to optimize your Mac each time you run this app.

Moreover, CleanMyMac X is notarized by Apple, so you can use it with the confidence that it’s safe.

MacPaw has a special deal just for MacStories readers. For the next four weeks, you can purchase the app for 5% off by using this link. So, get started today with CleanMyMac X to make sure you can trust your Mac.

Our thanks to CleanMyMac X from MacPaw for sponsoring MacStories this week.


BetterTouchTool: Customize Your Input Devices [Sponsor]

BetterTouchTool is an indispensable Mac app that has stood the test of time. The app was one of the first covered by MacStories back in November 2009. In those early days, BetterTouchTool was a simple app for adding customizable gestures to MacBook trackpads and the Magic Mouse.

Today, many things have changed in BetterTouchTool. Of course, it still allows you to configure all sorts of gestures for the Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse. However, nowadays, the app also supports many more input devices. BTT enables full Touch Bar customization, allows users to define keyboard shortcuts, including a powerful Hyper Key, bind the buttons of mice, create custom mouse gestures, customize the Siri Remote, connect and configure MIDI devices, and more.

BetterTouchTool offers a long list of predefined actions to automate tasks on your Mac that can be assigned to any input-device trigger you choose. The app also contains some handy features like window snapping, a clipboard manager, a screenshot editor, and much more. There is even a free iOS app to remotely control your Mac and trigger actions.

Also, BetterTouchTool already supports macOS Monterey and integrates deeply with the new Shortcuts app. It now lets you run Shortcuts using any of BTT’s triggers. Additionally, BetterTouchTool makes many of its actions available to be used within the Shortcuts app. For examples see https://community.folivora.ai/c/shortcuts/18.

The breadth of what can be accomplished with BetterTouchTool is only limited by your imagination. A great place to get started and be inspired by other BTT users is the BetterTouchTool Community at community.folivora.ai. Users have shared some fantastic BTT presets there, including some very advanced custom Touch Bar setups that you should definitely check out.

BetterTouchTool comes with a 45-day trial, after which you can choose between a license that includes all updates for 2 years and a lifetime license.

For a limited time, MacStories readers can purchase BetterTouchTool for 20% off by using the coupon code MACSTORIESBTT at checkout. So, don’t delay. Go to folivora.aito learn more about this fantastic Mac app and take advantage of the special limited-time, 20% discount on BetterTouchTool.

Our thanks to BetterTouchTool for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Downie: Easily Download Videos From YouTube and Thousands of Different Sites [Sponsor]

Downie for Mac is a simple yet powerful app that allows you to save content from YouTube, Youku, Bilibili, QQ, Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, Vimeo, and thousands of other sites. Just click on a button in your browser’s toolbar, and Downie will start downloading the content.

Downie can also be set up to extract just the audio, which is ideal for downloading podcasts and other audio material that you listen to when traveling or just commuting.

By default, Downie will take care of most of the workflow for you, selecting the best quality available, sorting downloads by the site they originate from, sorting downloads by playlists, converting the downloaded files into commonly used formats if needed (MP4, MP3), setting the metadata, and more.

But if you are a power user, you will be delighted to know that Downie also has even more powerful features, such as Permute integration, CSV import, an automated mode for uninterrupted downloads while you are not at the computer (or if you run Downie on a server), custom post-processing scripts, custom site integrations via JavaScript, saving extracted metadata into a separate JSON file, and so much more.

Using Transloader by Matthias Gansrigler from Eternal Storms Software, you can also send links from your iOS device to Downie on your Mac.

For a limited time only, MacStories readers can buy Downie with a 25% discount by using on this link or manually entering the discount coupon “MACSTORIES2021” during checkout.

This discount can also be used for the already-discounted Downie + Permute bundle. See Downie’s webpage for more information.

Our thanks to Downie for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Daylite is Monterey Ready! [Sponsor]

Hey Apple fans, excited for the macOS Monterey? So are we! Daylite is an award-winning CRM and productivity app made exclusively for your Mac, and it’s now Monterey ready! Daylite goes beyond the essential CRM experience or project management tool for small businesses; it seamlessly integrates with Apple devices and most of the built-in Apple apps and features you already use and love, with or without an internet connection. Direct Apple Mail integration so you and your team can capture all email communication in one place. That means you can create opportunities, appointments, and tasks in Daylite right from your Apple Mail.

Daylite’s productivity-focused design helps you and your team get more done throughout the full customer lifecycle. From meeting prospects and winning business to managing the moving pieces on projects, all the way through to following up for referrals and repeat business, it’s all done in Daylite.

If you live by the Mac, you’ll love Daylite. Start your free 30-day Daylite trial today!

Our thanks to Daylite for sponsoring MacStories this week.


I Made the Most Annoying App. And People Loved It. [Sponsor]

Annoying” is probably not a word a developer would like his app to be associated with.

I certainly don’t mind.

Thankfully, users have also thought of my app as “indispensable” and a “game changer.

Hi, I’m Junjie, and I made Due.

It has helped people living with ADHD and early dementia. It has saved marriages. And it seems to have even saved lives.

I’d love to say I had these noble goals in mind when I made Due.

The truth is, I created Due in 2010 for myself.

The first version tackled just one thing—quickly capture what needs to be done, and when it needs to be done.

When I realized it was easy to miss notifications, I added Auto Snooze. It repeatedly notifies me of overdue reminders until I act on them.

Often, I also needed to reschedule reminders. So I made it easy to postpone a reminder—even without launching the app.

Someone who had used Due for the past 9 years said the person who created Due knows his stuff.

I guess that’s because there isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t use Due myself.

Learn more about what Due can do for you. Available on iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch.

Also available separately for Mac—on the Mac App Store and Setapp.

Our thanks to Due for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Discourse: A Powerful, Customizable Platform for Civilized Discussion [Sponsor]

Discourse is a powerful, customizable, open-source platform designed to facilitate civilized discussion for your community. We’re reimagining what a modern discussion platform could be. Discourse is designed with the tools to create and scale a healthy, vibrant, and fun place to connect with your customers, superfans, or teammates online.

Toxicity and spam are two of the biggest problems for online communities, and we’ve developed features to help make your corner of the Internet a more civilized place. Discourse’s automatic trust system encourages new users to interact with your community in helpful, thoughtful ways – all while keeping spammers at bay. Plus, our built-in community-led moderation tools assist in keeping the trolls out and topics on track.

Wondering if your site will look just like every other community out there? We have you covered. Whether you’re a gaming community or a worldwide brand, you can customize Discourse to fit your company’s image with our extensive theming system. Additionally, our developer API and plugin ecosystem give you the ability to extend Discourse in a limitless number of ways.

Oh, and did we mention that you can trust your data with Discourse? Discourse never sells your data to advertisers, and you can download a full backup of your community at any time – no questions asked and no hidden fees.

Ready to try it out? MacStories readers can get a 60-day 100% free trial by using coupon code SHORTCUT when signing up. Start building your community today with Discourse.

Our thanks to Discourse for sponsoring MacStories this week.


FirstSeed Calendar: Best Calendar, Best Widgets [Sponsor]

FirstSeed Calendar is the highly customizable calendar app that works on every Apple platform, providing a seamless experience that anyone with a busy schedule will love. Available on the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch, FirstSeed Calendar offers four different monthly calendars and seven types of weekly calendars, ensuring that you’ll be able to find one that suits your needs.

The app takes advantage of the unique features of each Apple platform, providing an unparalleled experience that anyone with a busy schedule will appreciate. For example, FirstSeed Calendar offers elegant one-handed operation of the app’s most frequently used features, like viewing, adding, editing, deleting, moving, and duplicating events, which is perfect for today’s big-screen iPhones.

FirstSeed Calendar never wastes your time either. Unlike most other calendar apps, event names are suggested after typing just a few characters, allowing you to auto-complete events quickly and efficiently. The app also features over 20 Home Screen widgets, so you can get precisely the calendar you want on your Home Screen.

FirstSeed Calendar is continuously updated with the latest technologies too. Most recently, the iPad version of the app added XL widgets. The app also supports time sensitive notifications, allowing you to set alerts that break through Focus modes.

FirstSeed Calendar has all the other advanced features you expect in a pro calendar app too:

  • Calendar sets
  • Shortcuts integration
  • Event templates
  • An excellent Apple Watch app
  • Support for conferencing services like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Webex
  • Pointer support on the iPad
  • Bulk event editing
  • Multiple default event alarms
  • Dark mode, themes, custom date colors

Managing your calendar doesn’t have to be complicated. Take control of your schedule today with FirstSeed Calendar.

Learn more here, or go straight to the App Stores and download FirstSeed Calendar for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac today.

Our thanks to FirstSeed Calendar for sponsoring MacStories this week.