The best Mac apps for 2024: app recommendations for all areas

Over the last twelve months, I have provided you with five Mac app recommendations. This is how we came up with a list of 60 programs for Apple computers, which will of course also be useful in the new year 2024. If you are looking for the right macOS app for certain tasks, then take a look at the list below. Here you will find software titles from a wide variety of areas: photo and image editing, video creation, audio editing, file management, screen recording, software management, keyboard shortcuts, Apple icons, physics, navigation, backup management, E-Learning, design, 3D space planning, system customization and more!

The best apps for Mac in 2024

So let's start the year with a summary of last year's app recommendations. As already mentioned at the beginning, you will find programs from a wide variety of categories in the following list. Under each subheading I have linked the article from the respective month so that if you are interested you can view more information about the apps, access the developer websites or download and install the programs. The articles also contain information about the price, but many of the apps are free.

January

Im January 2023 I introduced you to the following apps:

  • Pipper: A web browser whose name comes from PiP (Picture in Picture) because it is always displayed on top of other program windows. This means that selected web content can always be kept in the foreground (video, package tracking, live stream, video conference, etc.).
  • Pinta: A painting and drawing program for fans of the old versions of MacPaint and MS Paint.
  • Strawberry: App for organizing your local music collection and playing it. Radio stations can also be played with the app via an internet connection.
  • WALTR PRO: App for converting and transferring files for use on individual devices. This means that all kinds of content can be moved from the Mac to the iPhone and other destinations without causing compatibility problems.
  • Moment: The Moment app helps display individual countdowns, counters, progress and the like. This way you can record milestones, work towards birthdays and generally keep an eye on important dates with the time left until then.

February

Im February 2023 there were these program tips:

  • SiriMote: The SiriMote helps to use the Siri remote control of the Apple TV on the Mac as a remote control for various applications. For example, it can be used to control presentations or media playback. If you use your Mac to play music, you have a corresponding remote control at hand.
  • Spaced: The Spaced App brings separating objects in the form of spaces to the menu bar in order to be able to divide their symbols into groups.
  • Whisper Transcription: An app that can transcribe spoken content into text output thanks to Whisper AI. It can be used in different languages ​​as well as for audio files and microphone input. In the March overview you will find an alternative to this with “Aiko”.
  • Sweet Home 3D: A practical app for room and furniture planning with floor plans and 3D views. The rooms can be designed to precise dimensions and the dimensions of the furniture can be adjusted. This allows precise concepts to be created and planning to be carried out.
  • folx: The Folx App is a download manager that handles Internet downloads from a variety of sources as well as in the form of torrents. Downloads can e.g. B. be split across multiple streams to speed them up.

March

Im March 2023 the Mac app recommendations consisted of this list:

  • Rick Rack: With RickRack you can quickly and easily create color palettes whose individual colors are adapted to each other using previously set parameters. By feeding in images or an individually selected color, entire color combinations and palettes can be created automatically. 
  • System Watcher: An app with a menu bar extension that shows various system values ​​- CPU load, memory usage, storage usage, network activity, battery information, and so on.
  • Aiko: A graphical interface for using Whisper AI, which can automatically transcribe spoken content in different languages ​​and output it as text. You can find a small test of the program in the form of a screenshot in the linked app list from March 2023.
  • ScreenNote: A practical app for drawing on the macOS screen content or for marking important content. Here too you will find a screenshot with example usage in the linked app overview. 
  • Hand Mirror: Tool with which the webcam can be called up and its image displayed using a keyboard shortcut or a click behind the MacBook notch. This way you can quickly have a mirror ready.

April

Im April 2023 I presented these five programs:

  • Pixel Perfect: With this software, iPhone and iPad apps that can be used on Mac models with Apple Silicon can be displayed in ideal resolution. This is intended to help avoid display errors, for example with image content or embedded text.
  • Ghostbusters: The Ghost Buster app helps eliminate junk data left behind by programs that have already been uninstalled.
  • Adapter: Adapter helps convert and adjust video files. The advantage of this app is the integration of two VLC players. In one playback you can see the original, in the other a preview of the edited target file. This allows adjustments to be made more precisely without having to start a new output process for each possible setting through trial and error.
  • CenterMouse: This software brings the mouse cursor back to the center of the display. The small mouse cursor can get lost, especially on large monitors and widescreen displays and at high resolutions. CenterMouse brings it back to the center of the image when certain events occur (e.g. Mac hibernation) or when a key combination is pressed.
  • TouchRetouch: A program specifically designed for photo touch-up. Disturbing elements or image errors can be removed and replaced with more neutral image content by simply highlighting them and making a few adjustments. This is how snapshots can be beautified.

May

Im May 2023 There were descriptions and links to these Mac apps:

  • BackupLoupe: Alternative view of Time Machine backups with advanced features for restoring images or individual files from them. The BackupLoupe app even helps when Time Machine itself doesn't know what to do. This makes file recovery from backups more reliable.
  • Complete Anatomy 2023: This is a professional anatomy app for people studying and working in the medical field. In addition to a lot of information, it also includes 3D models that can be adapted depending on the specialist area. Depending on the target group, there is a different pricing structure.
  • Focus Window Recorder: Focus Window Recorder app helps to record individual displays/monitors or app windows. There are some options available, such as showing or hiding the mouse cursor.
  • Backdrop X: This app hides desktop content to keep the macOS desktop clean during screen sharing, screen recordings, and screenshots. This eliminates the need to temporarily move files and folders to another location.
  • WidgetWall: The WidgetWall app helps display widgets on your desktop if you don't have macOS Sonoma. This means that widgets, mini versions of selected apps and websites can also be stored under macOS is coming and use in previous systems.

June

Im June 2023 It continued with the following software titles for macOS:

  • Phoenix: A window manager that allows you to adjust window positions and sizes using JavaScript. So some programming knowledge is necessary.
  • Menu World Time: This practical little app brings an individually created overview of times / time zones as a fold-out list in the macOS menu bar. Icons for sunrise, day, sunset and night show directly whether you can call the relevant location or expect a quick email response.
  • MagicMenu: The MagicMenu app enables extensive customization and individualization of the context menu, which you can access in macOS via right-click or secondary click. For example, the creation of new files and documents of a certain format can be accelerated in this way.
  • Gestimer 2: This app helps set a timer. To do this, simply drag the mouse cursor down from the corresponding menu bar symbol with the button clicked. Depending on the distance traveled, the timer duration can be set.
  • QuitAll: A quick way to quit active apps. This can be helpful to free up important resources with just a few clicks or to prepare the Mac for shutdown.

July

Im July 2023 I have put together the following list for you:

  • SF Symbols 5: The latest version of Apple's official symbol and icon collection. This contains images used for the uniform symbolic language and illustration of operating systems and apps. For use, they can be adapted, copied in various forms and thus integrated into your own projects.
  • GetRate: A clear app for currency conversion. Thanks to savable courses, it can also be used offline. Since it has not been maintained for years, other functions such as price forecasts are no longer available. However, current courses are still accessed and used correctly.
  • Day One: A diary app in which various diaries, logs, observations and the like can be recorded. Thanks to the clear sorting, individual content can be accessed quickly.
  • Topo maps: A mapping and navigation software that allows you to download map sections for offline use. 
  • Tripsy: The Tripsy app is intended to support and simplify travel planning. A wide variety of functions can be used, from schedules to storing tickets and tickets. This means that trips and vacations can be planned and viewed down to the last detail.

August

Im August 2023 did you receive another five app tips:

  • Tofu: With this app, long texts can be divided into columns, like articles in a newspaper. This is intended to make reading these texts easier and enable concentrated study of what has been written.
  • KnockKnock: The KnockKnock app displays extensions that have been installed by the user - everything from plugins for certain programs to system extensions to kernel extensions is included. This allows specific content to be located and managed more quickly. Online-based protection against malware is also integrated.
  • Diffusion Bee: A tool that allows you to use AI models to create and edit images according to individual specifications.
  • Ex: A web app that can extend, shorten or loop songs. In some areas of application it is certainly an alternative to the “Remix” feature of Adobe Premiere Pro.
  • Lift: On Browser, which is intended to keep streaming content (Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video, etc.) in the foreground so that you can keep an eye on it regardless of the other screen content and the amount and position of other program windows. 

September

Im September 2023 There were the following programs for your Apple computer:

  • 1 piece: This is a multifunctional tool that brings together a wide variety of macOS options and features and makes them easy to select. From window management to active corners to keyboard shortcuts, you can set a lot here without having to search for them in individual macOS or app settings.
  • Applite: Applite is a utility that makes it easier to find, install and maintain third-party apps from a variety of areas. Basically a small App Store alternative for apps that you can't get in the App Store.
  • Dipper: This software helps to record custom audio from specific apps or devices. It offers a convenient alternative to extensive programs for audio editing, music creation, media processing or the like.
  • clop: A program that reduces the file size of screenshots and screen recordings in video form. This means that the files can not only be stored more economically, but can also be shared more easily with others.
  • Commander One: Anyone who often exchanges files between folders, drives and/or servers will benefit from this double Finder view. Instead of having to open two Finder windows, Commander One shows the two selected directories right next to each other. This means files and folders can be copied or moved quickly and easily.

October

Im October 2023 you didn't have to miss out on the monthly tips:

  • Don't: This app helps install a command line that allows the use of language models in Port enabled. This means that locally stored LLMs like Llama from Meta can be used for chatbots running directly on the Mac.
  • OpenCore Legacy Patcher: This software allows you to install macOS Sonoma on old Mac models that are no longer officially supported. Not only is the operating system made to run on the old hardware - usage aids are also placed so that, for example, ports with the USB 1.1 standard can be used. Nevertheless, performance drops and other problems are possible.
  • About this Hack: This app brings the extensive “About this Mac” overview of old macOS versions back to the newer systems, where a heavily reduced data sheet for the machine in use is instead displayed. 
  • AnyText: The Any Text app makes it possible to display text in the form of widgets, similar to the iPhone. While individual notes, reminders and information go to the lock screen on the iPhone, they are displayed on the desk on the Mac.
  • Mission Control Plus: The Mission Control Plus app expands the macOS “Mission Control” overview with window management options. For example, program windows can be used via this overview. B. closed and apps closed.

November

Im November 2023 We entered the final spurt with the following titles:

  • LocalSend: An app that takes the AirDrop principle further and uses the local WLAN to enable file exchange for Windows, Linux, Android and Amazon devices in addition to Apple devices. The files only travel over the local network; they are not sent online via servers.
  • Chatd: The local chatbot application makes it possible to search documents using questions and commands. Do you have e.g. For example, if you have a comprehensive report as a PDF and want to summarize the main points, then Chatd can do this for you. The language model that is automatically loaded makes it possible to use it in English; German language models could also be used.
  • swiftGuard: An app that takes care of your USB ports. Allowed devices can be whitelisted and the Mac can be put to sleep when an unknown peripheral is connected. The use is e.g. B. conceivable on company computers, in offices and in authorities. This way, local data theft can be prevented.
  • Music decoy: A system extension that prevents the Music app from opening when you press the Play/Pause key (F8) on the Mac keyboard.
  • Haze Over: The HazeOver app offers custom settings to display only the active app window in full brightness. Everything behind it (desk and other app windows) is dimmed. The dimming level can be set. You can also set whether only one program window or one window per monitor should be displayed brightly for several monitors.

December

Im December 2023 These five apps rounded off the year:

  • SuperBright: Do you want to use the full brightness of 1.600 nits on the Apple Studio Display and MacBook Pro, even if you don't play HDR content? Then SuperBright is right for you. This means that the display can be used brighter than the standard 500 nits.
  • Switches: Switcher ensures that certain key combinations must be confirmed system-wide or in individual apps. This way you can prevent apps from being accidentally closed or other unwanted actions. If you want to carry it out, simply confirm it. There are many setting options in the free app.
  • Physics 101: An app that explains physics using various collections of formulas and calculation options. A lot is included, from simulating an electrical circuit to virtually firing a projectile for a better understanding of ballistics. So far the offer can only be used in English.
  • ViewScan: A scanning app that supports thousands of flatbed and document scanners. In addition to the necessary drivers, there are also a number of options for individually scanning documents and other documents or images. Cropping, resolution, coloring, filters and more can be set directly, so you can save yourself any subsequent editing.
  • Side Notes: The SideNotes app offers the option of quickly and easily writing notes on the edge of the display. In addition to continuous texts, to-do lists, notes structured with headings and the use of monospace fonts for use as a coding clipboard are also possible. Different color themes ensure that the design matches your own settings.

Could there be a little more? App recommendations from June 2021 to December 2022!

Didn't find the right one yet or are you so enthusiastic about the app recommendations here that you want to browse through even more software tips? Then of course I have more for you. This post format has been running since June 2021. The monthly recommendations written from then until December 2022 can be found summarized here: The best Mac apps for 2023: App recommendations for all areas of application.

If you miss a recommended app in the lists of this blog, simply introduce it in a comment. I'd be happy to take a look at your recommendations and include them in a future post for app recommendations in 2024 :)

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