In macOS Catalina, it seems whether or not you own a MacBook with a Touch Bar, Apple still wants you to be able to access those virtual controls, even if that means putting them right on the screen.

Image credit: Reddit user dotmax

Apple’s new Sidecar app lets you connect an iPad to your Mac for extra screen space. It works both wired and wirelessly, and supports the Apple Pencil as an input device for the Mac.

And for Mac apps with Touch Bar support, the controls appear at the bottom of your iPad screen — even if your Mac doesn’t have a Touch Bar.

In other words, the iPad Touch Bar mirrors the MacBook Pro‘s Touch Bar on a model with a Touch Bar, and when used with a MacBook Pro that doesn’t have a Touch Bar, it lets you tap into functionality that would otherwise be unavailable.

The implementation will be familiar to users of Duet Display, which was first to offer Touch Bar support on a connected tablet’s screen.

Since its introduction, the Touch Bar has divided users – some find the functionality useful, while others prefer their MacBook Pro to have a full set of physical function keys instead.

The Sidecar app is compatible with 2015 MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro and later, 2015 iMac and later, 2014 Mac mini or later, and 2013 Mac Pro or later.

Tag: Sidecar

This article, “Sidecar in macOS Catalina Brings Touch Bar Controls to Non-Touch Bar Mac Users” first appeared on

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