Unlock Your Mac Using Your IPhone or Your Apple Watch

The developments in the Apple hardware, If we talk about technology, they are never massive. Beyond a first product that defines the concept that the company wants to convey to its users, the following steps are even more round the idea. The next generations expand the possibilities, but is never added anything then not to serve more.

I remember the clear example of the GPS in the iPhone. When Steve Jobs told us that the second generation of its smart phone he would have with a geo-positioning chip, some critical comments were heard to the real usefulness of this. Unseat Tom Tom or similar as guidance in car systems? Didn’t make much sense, but over time the GPS has served more: position photos, sports, medical applications, maps (both for cars and pedestrians)…

The iPhone has also become in a field testing technology interesting. It has the advantage that provides mobility, and with it new uses and situations that perhaps we had not raised in desktop computing. One of them is the inclusion of a fingerprint reader from the iPhone 5s: nowadays even helps us to pay using Apple Pay, or to identify within applications and services. However, its main use is that we go unnoticed: protect our phone and access it almost instantly, without remembering passwords or patterns. Wouldn’t it be great to have something so simple on the Mac?

Magic, also known as Bluetooth Low Energy

There are several applications to achieve this – time – Apple still has not arisen include on OS x does not have – nor have hints of it, at least as I write these lines – that the company will provide for Touch ID a new generation of notebooks or keyboards. It is quite possible (I do not doubt it) of that will happen in the future, but while that moment, there are applications that can serve us as good alternatives.

Today I encourage you to try Knock. Who work with a Mac on a daily basis and use password in our user, we understand the heavy which is put it dozens – or hundreds – of times a day. One of the simplest methods is to that proposed us Knock: match your Mac with your iPhone (and Apple Watch, if we have it) to make this something natural and comfortable process.

Therefore you will need to download the App from the App Store (€4.99 that are well worth) and the client for your Mac (is free). Before doing anything, that if, check that your Mac is among the list compatible computers:

  • MacBook Air from 2012 or later
  • MacBook Pro of 2012 or later
  • iMac in 2012 or later
  • Mac mini in 2011 or later
  • Mac Pro from 2013

This is due to the fact that Knock uses Bluetooth Low Energy (also known as Bluetooth Smart), a technology designed for efficient communication between intelligent devices, which began to integrate together with the Bluetooth 4.0 specification from 2010 (the first smartphone that led in the market was the iPhone 4s).

Therefore, also have to take into account that the compatibility of the Knock app for iPhone includes models 4s, 5, 5 c, 5s, 6 (and Plus), 6s (and Plus) and iPhone is.

Unlock your Mac using the iPhone or Apple Watch

Once we have the client on OS X installed (nothing complicated, will only need to enter our username and password to access the computer to Knock knows it), we only have match it with iOS app and leave it open in the background. Is not necessary or that is active or having the phone unlocked: when the login screen appears, we have several options to enter.

Knock uses an ingenious and original method using the accelerometer of the iPhone to unlock your Mac.

As you may have seen in the video, the most spectacular is to use a few soft punches with the hand on the iPhone so that accelerometer detects the pressure and send to the client for the Mac release order with the username and password. The process is almost instantaneous, and quite attractive, why not say it… We can even do it without removing the Mobile Pocket, and works fast, thanks to good integration they achieved with OS X.

If in addition, we also have a Apple Watch, We will be able to unlock it by pressing the corresponding button within the interactive notification that we will reach our doll: this, sure that say you it was the future. Once you are into your Mac in this way, you shall cast less when you use another computer.

Knock, your Mac simple access control

I have chosen to Knock as App of the week for various reasons (as mentioned in the podcast Una Cosa Más): first, its simplicity and ease of use. Insurance that will occur other ways to unlock a computer, but few more simple that give two touches to your pocket, or press a button on the Apple smartWatch.

Then there is no doubt, it great implementation of Bluetooth Low Energy, getting that although we have the App open in the background throughout the day, we will just see appreciable energy expenditure. In my tests, I have not noticed any decline in battery in the iPhone Plus 6s with respect to its common use.

And beyond all that, by the amount of time saving us to use it to constantly unblock the Mac there where we are: home, travel, office… Take the computer password is essential as a first measure of privacy. About this, where they steal your phone, always we can change or block the link to our Mac without any problem, anytime. Safely, quickly and effectively: a great idea, well carried out, who knows to take advantage of the devices Apple ecosystem.

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