How to Use Hot Corners on Mac

Mac offers tons of handy hacks to boost productivity, from keyboard shortcuts to hot corners. As the name suggests, macOS hot corners allow you to trigger specific actions or functions by moving the cursor to designated corners of the screen. This article will explore how to set up, customize, and use hot corners on Mac.

How to Use Hot Corners on Mac

After setting up this feature, you’ll discover that accessing everything you need has become much more manageable. Whether you want to activate the screensaver, launch Mission Control, or perform other tasks, hot corners are an efficient way to do so.

What Are Hot Corners on Mac

Hot corners are designated areas in each corner of your Mac’s screen. And when you move your cursor to a hot corner, the assigned action will be activated automatically. You can activate the following action for macOS hot corners.

  • Mission Control
  • Application Windows
  • Desktop
  • Notification Center
  • Launchpad
  • Quick Note
  • Start Screen Saver
  • Disable Screen Saver
  • Put Display to Sleep
  • Lock Screen

Note: By default, Mac assigns the left-bottom corner to Quick Note. You can pull up a Quick Note at any time.

How to Set Up Hot Corners on Mac

Step 1: Click Apple Menu from the top-left corner of the screen.

Step 2: From the drop-down menu, select System Settings (macOS Ventura or later).

Tap System Settings

Step 3: Select Desktop & Dock from the sidebar and then Hot Corners from the right.

Click Hot Corners

Step 4: In the pop-up menu, choose the hot corner and select the action from the drop-down menu next to it.

Step 5: Click Done to set up the hot corners.

Select the action and tap Done

If you’re using macOS Monterey and above, go to System Preferences → Mission Control (or Desktop & Screen Saver → Screen Saver) → Hot Corners. Repeat steps 4 and 5, to set up the hot corner in Mac.

How to Use Mac Corner Shortcuts

Once you have set up your hot corners, using them is a straightforward process. To activate a hot corner and trigger the assigned action, move your cursor to the corner of the screen where you have configured a hot corner.

As you reach the designated corner, the assigned action will activate automatically. For instance, if you set the top right corner to display Mission Control, moving your cursor to that corner will bring up the Mission Control interface.

Disable One or All Hot Corner Shortcuts on Mac

Although extremely useful, you might want to customize or completely disable macOS hot corners. All you need to do is walk through the steps outlined below to switch them off.

Launch Apple Menu → System Settings → Desktop & Dock → Hot Corners → from the dropdown menu, select a different option or ‘-’ to disable that particular hot corner → click Done. Repeat this process to disable all hot corners.

Click -

Add Modifier Keys to Prevent Hot Corners From Accidentally Activating

Many users hesitate from taking advantage of hot corners because instead of helping out, it creates hindrance because of accidental activation. Let’s say you’re trying to close a window and the top-left corner action activates disturbing your workflow.

However, you can use modifier keys i.e., Shift, Control, Option, and Command keys on your keyboard to prevent accidental activation of hot corners. When enabled, you’ll require a specific key combination and cursor movement to trigger a hot corner.

Configuring Modifier Keys for Hot Corners

Go to Apple Menu → System Settings → Desktop & Dock → Hot Corners. Now hold down the desired modifier key (Shift, Control, Option, or Command) on your keyboard while selecting the action for that hot corner.

For instance, hold down the Shift key and then choose the action for the top left corner. Now, when you take your cursor towards top left corner nothing will happen unless you press the Shift key.

Tap Shift and then customize hot corner

Tip: It’s important to choose modifier keys, something that you don’t use frequently in other tasks. Wisely, this will minimize conflicts with regular keyboard shortcuts and operations.

What if macOS Hot Corners Don’t Work

If you encounter trouble while using Hot Corners on Mac, here are some troubleshooting steps you can take to resolve the problem.

  • Check Hot Corner Settings: Verify that the hot corners are set up correctly. Also, ensure that the actions assigned do not conflict with any present settings. You can also disable and then enable them for good measure.
  • Restart Your Mac: A simple restart can often resolve temporary glitches or conflicts that may be affecting the functionality of hot corners.
  • Check for Software Updates: Outdated software can sometimes cause conflicts with hot corners. Go to System Settings → General → Software Update → If available tap Update or Restart Now.
Update Mac Software
  • Disable Third-Party Applications: Temporarily disable or quit any recently installed or suspicious applications and check if the hot corners work without them. If the issue is resolved, you can narrow down the problematic application by enabling them one by one to find conflicting apps.

Double up Your Productivity With Hot Corners on Macbook

By setting up and customizing your hot corners, you can streamline your workflow by accessing important functions with a simple cursor movement. A wise tip is to experiment with different actions and find a combination that works best for you.

And though hot corners aren’t available on iPhone, it is a useful tool available for iPad. However, the way to set might vary from Mac, if interested check out the link mentioned.

Last updated on 19 July, 2023

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