You have in all probability seen a number of the symbols on the prime of your Mac’s keyboard and puzzled what they do. They’re truly much more useful than you would possibly suppose, and you may love them as soon as you work it out. This is what you could know to begin utilizing them.

What are Mac Keyboard Symbols?

Except you could have a MacBook Professional with Contact Bar, you have in all probability already observed that there are some weird-looking symbols on the keys on the prime of your keyboard, proper above the perform keys—i.e. the F1 to F12 keys.

Every image represents an motion or shortcut that you should use in your Mac as an alternative of trying to find a strategy to do it. For instance, they may help you modify the amount or open your Launchpad in Flash. That is what all these symbols imply.

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F1: Lower display screen brightness

The image on F1 which considerably resembles the solar is there that will help you flip down the brightness of your display screen. As you possibly can in all probability guess, if you press it, your display screen will begin to dim, and you will notice the brightness degree in your display screen, so you possibly can modify it to your liking.


F2: Enhance display screen brightness

The subsequent image on F2 seems to be just like the solar shining down, and it is the other of the F1 key, which implies this key helps you improve the brightness of your show. While you press it, your brightness will begin growing, and you will notice the brightness degree seem in your display screen.

F3: Open Mission Management

The F3 key might sound a bit complicated at first, however it’s actually useful. The image seems to be like three rectangles, and if you press it, it opens Mission Management.

Sure, the title sounds prefer it belongs to an area film, however this key allows you to rapidly see all of your open apps, making it straightforward to change between them. You may get a preview of what the opposite apps are doing, and you’ll click on on any of them to go to that app. Consider it as an improved model of your iPhone’s app switcher.

RELATED: How one can Use A number of Desktops with Mission Management in macOS

F4: Open Launchpad or Highlight

Subsequent up is the F4 button, which is an easy image of six squares organized neatly—the other of the F3 key.

This button opens the Mac’s Launchpad. And in case you do not know what which means, Launchpad is the place you may discover all of the apps you have put in in your Mac. Right here you possibly can search, open and rearrange your apps. If you would like, you may also create folders to your apps like iPhone.

Understand that as an alternative of six squares, you could have a magnifying glass. When you’ve got this selection on, it means you may open Highlight as an alternative.

RELATED: Highlight Search Ideas Cheat Sheet for Mac

F5: Lower keyboard brightness or activate dictation

Relying in your keyboard and your Mac, you might not see any image on the F5 key, however you probably have a MacBook with a backlit keyboard, you should use this to decrease the brightness of your keyboard. When you press it, the brightness will begin lowering, and you will notice the brightness degree of your keyboard on the display screen.

When you’ve got a Magic Keyboard, and the F5 key has a microphone image as an alternative, you can activate dictation if you press this key.

F6: Toggle up keyboard brightness or don’t disturb

As you possibly can in all probability guess, the F6 key’s the other of the F5 key, so that you may not have an emblem on this key. When you press it, you possibly can improve the brightness in your keyboard, and additionally, you will see the keyboard brightness degree in your display screen to higher modify it.

For some magic keyboards, you may even see a moon image. Urgent it would flip Do Not Disturb on or off to your Mac.

F7: Rewind or Skip Again

The F7 key has a backwards image, and it’s extremely straightforward to make use of: it will make it easier to rewind or skip no matter you are listening to. And in the event you press it once more or press it initially, it would return to the earlier observe you had been listening to.


Additionally, it is price noting that this key will work on each the Apple Music and Spotify apps on Mac, in addition to different audio apps like Podcasts.

F8: Play or Pause

You’ll be able to in all probability already guess that the symbols on the F8 key are for pause and play. You’ll be able to play and pause audio if you faucet in your Mac. This works even if you’re watching a video on Safari; That means, you do not have to search for tabs to pause or resume what you are listening to.

It additionally does one other factor. Should you’re not listening to something, urgent this key will robotically open Apple Music, which is a wonderful keyboard shortcut you may in all probability get pleasure from.

RELATED: Mac Music App Alternate options: Greatest Free Music Gamers

F9: Quick-forward or skip

The F9 key can also be very straightforward to find. While you press the fast-forward icon, you may instantly bounce to the subsequent tune within the queue. And like the opposite two keys, it really works for Spotify, Podcasts, and Apple Music.

F10: Mute

The F10 key or speaker image allows you to mute your Mac rapidly if you press it. Press it once more, and your Mac will revert to the amount degree earlier than.

F11: Quantity Down

The subsequent speaker image with a line subsequent to it would make it easier to flip down the amount in your Mac. While you press it, you will notice the amount degree in your display screen, and your quantity will begin lowering. Maintain it down, and the amount will proceed to drop.

F12: Quantity Up

And the F12 key, which is one other speaker image with three traces subsequent to it, will make it easier to improve the amount in your Mac. Press it as soon as, and you will notice that the amount degree in your Mac has gone up. And in the event you maintain it down, the amount will go up fully.

What about perform keys?

Not everybody makes use of them on a regular basis, however if you wish to use the perform keys—the F1 to F12 keys—as an alternative of the shortcut actions we simply talked about, there’s additionally a strategy to do it out of your Mac keyboard.

All you need to do is press and maintain fn key within the lower-left nook of your Mac keyboard after which press the perform key you wish to use.

Perceive the symbols in your keyboard

That is all you could find out about bizarre wanting symbols in your Mac. Do not forget that this will likely take a while, however utilizing these keys will make it easier to carry out on a regular basis duties a lot sooner. And as soon as you have mastered them, you possibly can transfer on and deal with studying different superior keyboard shortcuts.



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