Universal Control and Handoff are broken in macOS and iPadOS

Apr 5, 2023

Many users have reported that Universal Control and Handoff are not working in macOS Ventura 13.3 and iPadOS 16.4. Apple had released the latest versions of the operating systems a week ago, with several fixes for security issues.

What does the feature do? Universal Control is a handy option that lets you use a single input device across multiple Macs and iPads. This is possible with the Handoff feature that lets devices that are signed in to the same iCloud account, to pick up where you left off on another device. It is particularly useful for moving calls or mails from your iPhone, and continuing the tasks on your Mac.

As for Universal Control, it helps you use your keyboard, mouse or trackpad with your Mac and iPad, you may use it seamlessly on any of the connected devices, and the cursor will shift between the screens based on their position. It also lets you drag and drop content from one screen to another.

Universal control on iPadOS and macOS

Universal Control and Handoff are not working in macOS and iPadOS

These features don't seem to work in the latest versions of the operating systems. A thread on Apple's community forums has over 100 votes from users who explained that they were unable to get Universal Control to work on devices that had no such trouble previously. Some users even claimed that that Universal Control does not appear on their systems at all.

Most of the complaints seem to agree on one point, that they were able to use Universal Control in macOS 13.2, and these issues began surfacing only after they had updated to macOS Ventura 13.3. Unfortunately, the issues aren't limited to macOS, 9to5Mac reports that the bugs also affect devices that are running on iPadOS 16.4. Sidecar also seems to be glitchy, as is the Universal Clipboard's copy and paste feature. A couple of other complaints mentioned that that their Apple Watch was not unlocking their Mac anymore.

A few people have shared a workaround for these bugs. Disable Handoff from your Mac, iPad and iPhone settings, and restart the devices. Turn the feature back on, and it should work again. Some users say that this fix is only a temporary measure, and that they had to repeat the steps on their systems when it stopped working again, in order to connect to the devices. Another workaround that has been suggested by other users is to sign out of the Apple account on the affected devices, and sign in again. It is unclear whether this fixes the problem permanently.

Apple has had some tough luck with feature-breaking bugs in recent updates. Even though iOS 16.5 beta is underway, rumors suggest that the company has begun working on iOS 16.4.1 to address issues related to the Weather app not loading the data, Wi-Fi networks asking for passwords again, among other problems that were reported in the stable version of the operating system. So, it is possible that the company could release iPadOS 16.4.1 to fix the issues related to Universal Control and Handoff as well.

Have you encountered similar bugs on your Mac?

Universal Control and Handoff are broken in macOS and iPadOS
Article Name
Universal Control and Handoff are broken in macOS and iPadOS
Universal Control and Handoff are not working in the latest version of macOS and iPadOS. Several users have reported the issue to Apple.
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