Widgets For The Mac


Fantastical’s widgets represent, by far, the most comprehensive set of widget options I’ve seen for a calendar app. They’re made even more useful by the fact that Fantastical supports not just calendars, but also tasks from Reminders and Todoist, direct sign-ins to your Zoom account, and it even provides weather forecasts. Widgets used to reside in Dashboard, which arrived on the Mac back in 2005 with Mac OS X Tiger. There they remained until the launch of Mac OS X Yosemite in 2014, when they moved to Notification.


The Up Next and the Favorites widgets were popular widgets that were available in previous versions of iOS. The Up Next widget would show you the next alarm, calendar event or reminder you had scheduled. The Favorites widget would show you a selection of your favorite contacts.

See also: How to Download and Install the iOS 14 Update & Troubleshoot Common Problems

See also: Camera not Working after iOS 14 Update

These popular widgets are noticeably absent in iOS 14 and some users are pretty upset about it (See: How To Send Feedback To Apple). Although we can’t bring them back for you, we provide a guide here for setting up widgets that will give you back most of the features you miss from the Up Next and the Favorites widgets.

See also: Why is there an Orange or Green Dot on my iPhone?

The Up Next Widget

In iOS 14, we can still create widgets for both the Calendar and the Reminders apps. We can create a widget for Calendar and a widget for Reminders. You can have these two widgets side-by-side if you would like to see both at the same time or you can then stack the two if you would like to save space. Unfortunately, this would not allow you to simply look at the widget to see what is “Up Next” from among all calendar events and reminders, but simply scrolling through the widget stack (a small gesture to perform) to get to the other widget will show you the information.

See also: A Guide to the 5 Best iOS 14 Features

The one widget we don’t find in iOS 14 is an Alarm widget. And, although you can access the alarm settings under the Clock app on your iPhone, the only settings available for the Clock widget are the City, or time zone, settings for your Clock widget. Hopefully, there will be more widget options available in the near future. For now, you can follow these steps to create widgets that will give you a quick view of your upcoming events and tasks.

See also: Clock Widget Showing Incorrect Time in iOS 14

Create Calendar and Reminders Widgets

See also: How To Create a Family Calendar

  1. To create a Calendar widget, press and hold in an open space on your home screen, then tap the plus (+) in the upper-left corner of your screen.
  1. Scroll down until you see Calendar, then select it.
  1. Click Add Widget.
  1. Your Calendar widget will appear on your Home Screen.
  1. Now to add the Reminders widget, again press and hold in an open space on your Home Screen and tap the plus (+) sign in the upper-left corner of your screen.
  1. Scroll down and select Reminders.
  1. Choose Add Widget.
  1. Now you can either:
  • Click Done to leave the widgets separate, or …
  • Drag the Calendar widget on top of the Reminders widget to create a widget stack.
  • To scroll through the widgets in your stack, just touch the stack and slide your finger up or down to bring another widget to the top of the stack.

The Favorites Widget

Many users miss the Favorites widget that was previously available for your Today Page. It was a quick way to call those people you called most often. With the Favorites widget, you didn’t have to open your Phone or Contacts app and search or scroll through the list to find the person you were looking for. What we present here is a workaround using Shortcuts. It will allow you to create a Favorites widget for either your Home Screen or your Today Page that contains shortcuts to your favorite contacts.

See also: Widgets Not Working on iPhone or iPad

Create Shortcuts for your Favorites

  1. Open the shortcuts app: Swipe left-to-right to get to the Today Screen.
  1. Type Shortcuts in the Search field. Tap the Shortcuts app icon.
  1. Tap Shortcuts in the upper-left part of the screen.
  1. Tap the add folder icon in the upper-right part of the screen.
  1. Type a name for your folder, like Favorites. Then tap Add in the upper-right corner of your screen.
  1. Select your newly created Favorites folder.
  1. Tap the plus (+) in the upper-right corner of the screen.
  1. Tap Add Action.
  1. Scroll down to Call and select from one of the suggested contacts listed under Call, or tap the plus [+] to choose a contact.
  1. If you chose to add a contact, now tap Contact, then choose the person you would like set up the quick call shortcut for from your contacts list.
  1. Tap Next.
  1. Enter a name for your shortcut, then tap Done.
  1. You are now back to the screen for your Favorites folder in the Shortcuts app. You can see your new shortcut listed under Favorites.
  1. Continue to add more Favorites by repeating steps 7-12. When you are done adding all of your Favorites, then exit the Shortcuts app.

Add Favorites to Home Screen or Today Page

  1. To add your favorites to your Home Screen, press and hold an empty space on your Home Screen, then select the plus (+) in the upper-left corner of your screen.
  1. Scroll down until you see Shortcuts and select it.
  1. Swipe right and left to choose the size for your widget, then tap Add Widget. Don’t worry if your Favorites widgets aren’t showing. We can select them later.
  1. Now you can press and hold your new Favorites widget to move it around on your Home Screen, move it to another screen, or move it to your Today Page. Once you have your widget in place, press and hold on the widget to open its menu.
  1. Click on All Shortcuts to change the Folder selection.
  1. Choose your Favorites folder. Then tap anywhere outside of the Shortcuts Folder pop-up window to exit.

See also: Can’t Rearrange Apps On Home Screen? Fix

Now you have your Favorites on either your Home Screen or Today Page, whichever you chose. When you want to call one of your favorites, just tap their shortcut icon in your Favorites widget. Here are my Favorites on my Today Page.

See also: How To Recover Deleted Contacts

MacOS comes with a Dashboard, wherein you get widgets, apps designed to use a function or access a service. Widgets allow you to quickly access apps by switching to the Dashboard environment.

Apple designed the Dashboard so that widgets could run in a protected area. To understand it better, you can think of it as a Sandbox. Therefore, to enter the Dashboard app, you need to leave the Mac desktop.

However, this makes widgets a separate part on your Mac, which seems to be inconvenient to access. Would it not be great if widgets could exist on your desktop?

Well, it is possible. Apple even provides the steps for developers to let them test and debug their widgets on their desktop during development.

In this post, we have discussed how to add widgets to Mac desktop.

How To Add Widgets To Mac Desktop?

You can get your widgets on your desktop using Terminal. We need to enable Dashboard development mode using Terminal.

Step 1: Click on Go->Utilties-> Terminal.

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Once Terminal is launched, type in

  • defaults write com.apple.dashboard devmode YES

Widgets For Mac

Now, Hit Return

Note: Please make sure you enter the command in a single line in the Terminal app.

Step 2: Now type the below command into Terminal:

killall Dock

Hit Return

Note: Make sure the case of the text matches as the above.

This will make your Dock vanish for a second.

Step 3: Now type the below command on your Terminal to end the current session:

Apple Widgets For Mac


Press Return or enter.

Apps For The Macbook

Now close the Terminal app.

Once done, you need to follow a few more steps:

Step 4: Move A Widget To The Desktop

Now that you are done with Terminal commands, you need to follow some additional steps:

If you have OS X Mountain Lion or Earlier, then follow these steps:

Note: Please make sure F-Lock is enabled

  • Press F12 or click Dashboard icon from Dock. Now select widget by clicking it and press the mouse button. Keep pressing the mouse button until the next step is completed.
  • Press F12 again and drag the widget to desktop at any preferred location. Once the widget is placed, let go of the mouse button.

If you have a newer version of macOS than above, then follow these steps:

  • Go to System Preferences (locate it from Apple menu)
  • Select Mission Control.
  • Locate Dashboard, from the drop-down menu, select As Overlay instead of As Space (in case of Yosemite, El Capitan. and macOS Sierra). Remove checkmark beside Show Dashboard as Space (in case of Mountain Lion or Mavericks)
  • Press F12 and get Dashboard icon. Select the widget and press the mouse button.
  • Keep the mouse button pressed and press F12 and drag the widget to the desktop. Once the widget is on desktop, release the mouse button.

Additional Tip: You can always place the widgets back in Dashboard, for that: Click on widget and press mouse button. Now don’t release the mouse button and press F12 and drag it to a preferred location on Dashboard.

To disable Dashboard Development Mode, you need to follow the same steps as we have followed in the first section. Only different would be in the first command,

Widgets For Mac Desktop

  • defaults write com.apple.dashboard devmode NO

Instead of Yes, you need to type No after the command and hit Enter to execute the command. Followed by the two commands,

Widgets For Mac High Sierra

  • killall Dock


So, in this way you can add widgets to your Mac desktop. Widgets on your desktop seem to be a great option to improve productivity, however, it is not recommended to keep widgets on the desktop if you have a small screen.

Bonus Tip: If you want to get third-party apps as a widget on your Mac desktop, you can always use Flotato app to get web apps of any of the websites you frequently use.

Read this to know more about Flotato app.

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