One of the major issues I face daily as a Mac, iPhone, and iPad user boils down to what I call ‘screen maintenance.’ Screens need to be maintained? No, my Mac seldom needs much of anything to keep it humming along. Ditto for iPhone and iPad.
All three seem to need to be turned off from time to time (especially iOS devices), but the maintenance I’m referring to is how apps are organized and used. iPhone and iPad require app icon management. The Mac is different because we use the Mac’s screen differently than iPhone and iPad.
Make. Windows. Stick.
The Mac’s screen is different and how we use apps on a Mac is much different– at least, for now– than on iPhone or iPad where a single app occupies all the screen’s real estate (soon to change with iOS 11 on iPad Pro; that’s another story for another time, but indicative of how iPad could infringe on Mac sales). The Mac can have many apps open at the same time, and those apps have windows which can overlap one another.
That’s both good and bad. Multiple open apps means we’re more productive (at least, we think we are), and switching back and forth between apps is easier than on iOS devices. But that also means the Mac suffers from the notorious cluttered screen effect.
Enter Magnet, a handy Mac utility which helps to organize app windows to fit onto a Mac’s screen so you always know where each app is, even with many apps and windows open at the same time, and with overlapping windows scattered around the screen.
In short, Magnet is an app window manager. It makes the edge of the Mac’s screen work like a magnet so that app windows can be placed on the edges and stay there as if a magnet was holding the window.
Magnet works much like other Mac app window managers. App windows can be parked on half a screen– top, bottom, left, or right– including fullscreen but not the macOS Sierra fullscreen mode, which actually functions differently. It also lets you park smaller apps and utilities (good for Contacts, Notes, Reminders, Maps, etc.) into any one of four screen quadrants so you’ll always know where they are. It even has left and right two-thirds of the Mac’s screen.
App windows can be moved and stuck into place one of three ways. Drag and drop, keyboard shortcuts, or through the Magnet app in the Mac’s Menubar. Magnet has a few more useful features than the Split Screen view on macOS which might be all many users need, but if you have many apps open on a single screen, Magnet does a better job positioning them just where you want.
Nicely done. Simple and elegant. Affordable, and it comes with a gazillion four and five star reviews on the Mac App Store. The only negative is the Download button isn’t a download, it’s a link to the Mac App Store but you’ll be surprised at the nominal price tag so what’s to worry? What I would like to see is a way to restore all apps that have been adjusted by Magnet, but then moved by me. I tend to do that during the day– move apps around, so having a single button to restore them would be handy.