I can't wait to test macOS Monterey's Universal Control — where is it?

Universal Control
Universal Control (Image credit: Apple)

When Apple announced macOS Monterey in June there was a lot to get our heads around, but one of the features I was instantly drawn to was Universal Control. I have an iPad on my desk all the time, so how cool would it be to be able to control it using my Mac's mouse and keyboard?

Spoiler: it'd be very cool indeed. It's a shame I haven't been able to try it yet.

Today saw the release of macOS Monterey beta 4 as we career towards the expected fall launch of Apple's next big Mac software release. I've been running the betas for weeks now and so far, so (mostly) good. But while we've been on the rollercoaster that is the Safari story, Universal Control is nowhere to be seen. And that makes me sad.

Apple even teased me earlier today. In a move that almost feels personal at this point, Apple listed the arrival of Universal Control in the macOS Monterey beta 4 release notes — only to remove it shortly afterward. The feature is nowhere to be seen, of course.

So what makes Universal Control so interesting, you ask? It's going to be the best Mac feature ever! I'll let Apple explain.

A single keyboard and mouse or trackpad now work seamlessly between your Mac and iPad — they'll even connect to more than one Mac or iPad. Move your cursor from your Mac to your iPad, type on your Mac and watch the words show up on your iPad, or even drag and drop content from one Mac to another.

Again, as someone who has their iPad next to their Mac's display anyway, this really tickles my fancy. I can't wait to test it out — I just wish Apple would let me.

The continued absence of Universal Control from these beta releases is a concern, of course. Apple has a history of features disappearing during beta programs — and this one never even arrived. There are clearly issues here, so I'm just going to sit with my fingers, toes, arms, and legs crossed in the hope that whatever's borked can be un-borked come the fall.

If I could cross my eyes, I'd do that as well!

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.