How to unlock your Mac using your iPhone’s or iPad’s Touch ID

“If you have a relatively recent Mac and an iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch equipped with TouchID [sic], Apple’s fingerprint-reading security feature, MacID lets you turn your mobile device into a key that can unlock your Mac,” Alan Henry reports for Lifehacker.

“You can tell MacID to automatically lock your Mac when you’re not in immediate proximity to it, to auto lock and unlock when you move away or come back (expect an impact on the battery of all devices if you enable this, but it’s convenient), or just manually lock or unlock your device from your iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch,” Henry reports. “Once you get back to your computer, instead of typing out your password, you can use TouchID on your mobile device to authenticate, unlock your Mac, and get back to work. ”

More info and links in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Useful or superfluous?

Quoted in the article at $4, the MacID app is currently $0.99 in Apple’s App Store.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Arline M.” for the heads up.]


  1. Have used this for a couple days. Have occasional problem establishing connection with watch, and MBP. Once established it works well. I use it to set the screensaver as well. The watch app also displays the charge remaining on the iPhone, handy. Convenient, saves typing, works automagically. Give it a try. 🖖😀⌚️

  2. Proximity is nice, but as often I get near it and don’t want to unlock it so it’s not that useful. Touch ID unlocking is nice, but in practice it’s not actually much quicker to use. You have to use it to unlock your phone and then again within the app to unlock the Mac, personally I can type my 20 character password faster than that.

  3. I downloaded and started using this Mac in two locations: Home and Work.

    At home, this solution isn’t appreciably faster or easier than simply typing the password in.

    At work, it’s amazing. Why? Because of the way I use it compared to at home. At work, I have proximity set up to ask for unlocking on my Apple Watch. I also have proximity set up to auto lock the machine.

    So I walk away, and the machine locks. I walk up to the Mac, touch the spacebar on the keyboard and I immediately feel a tap on my wrist. I press the prominently displayed “authorize” button, and the Mac is unlocked.

    Another nice thing is that when I walk away from the Mac, I can look at the Apple Watch to see what state the computer is in, locked or unlocked. If it’s still unlocked, I can immediately lock it from my wrist without walking over to the machine.

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