100 Tips #10: How To Quickly Switch Between Apps

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Some of our previous tips have guided you around the Dock, but you might not always want to use that.

Sometimes, you just want to quickly flit between applications, and constantly taking your hands off the keyboard to use the mouse or trackpad can be annoying.

This tip shows you a quick way to switch from one app to another, without taking your hands off the keyboard at all.

All you need is the Command key, and the Tab key. Hold down Command, and repeatedly press Tab until the App Switcher highlights the application you wish to switch to. Then let go.

This short screencast shows you what I mean:

Two extras:

  • Keep holding down Command, and tap Q to quit an application in the background.
  • Keep holding down Command, and tap the backtick key (`) to switch between different windows inside one application.

Taking a few minutes to learn these simple keyboard controls will greatly speed up your day-to-day use of OS X.

(You’re reading the 10th post in our series, 100 Essential Mac Tips And Tricks For Windows Switchers. Find out more.)