Stage Manager is Growing on Me

I’m still learning how to use Stage Manager but it is growing on me. I like that the Dock is hidden when I expand the active window to almostfull screen with my open apps showing up on the left panel. I also notice that the desktop fades out. Overall, it is effective and I like the look.


Coming from “I like how I can see all the windows and apps on MacOS9”, the fullscreen, magnet management window doesnt really work for me. I usually manage multiple windows and apps on a single project. I like how in Stage Manager, I have a view of the apps and windows I use while I can just drag and drop it to my current view. If I need a full screen one, its on my external display.

I am also using stage manager on my 14" M1 MBP. I like it but sometimes I feel that it is a bit fiddly. I can see the benefit on laptop but I can’t see myself using it on the large 34" monitor

On a side, I heard (may be wrong) that there is ways to make one app full screen and hide the other screens on the left side, then I hover my cursor to show the hidden screen. However I tried but it did not work. Also there is no much customization available for Stage Manager, pretty much on or off

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I’ve been using it fulltime for a week+ since I installed iPadOS 16 last Monday. I’ve been making notes and will make a more in-depth post, but I have to say, even with all the strangeness of it, my feeling is that it is a net positive. Right now I have the World Series playing PiP, Safari for browsing this forum, iA Writer for taking notes, Messages to keep an eye on a conversation I’m having and finally Spotify to play during the commercials of the baseball game. This would not have been possible before stage manager.


I just don’t like that tilted window perspective on the side of the screen with Stage Manager.


You can turn that feature off in the Stage Manager settings by toggling Recent Applications. :grinning:

The deal-breaker for me is that “Stages” are maintained in separate Spaces…and that it requires different displays to have separate Spaces.

The result is that I can’t seem to have a Stage shared by each of my displays.

I also really am enjoying stage manager, especially as I get more comfortable with it and understand it better. Nevertheless:

This has been one of the quirks of stage manager that I am not a fan of either. It seems to me that the stage should consist of all of the displays in the aggregate.

However, I I think I understand the interface challenge, because:

if with stage manager on spaces still exist, which they do, it’s possible to switch spaces on one display and not another;

That would seem to mean that you could have a partial stage available on one display with the rest of that stage being hidden if you had another space active on the other monitor; either that, or,

if you switched to a different space on one display, it would put that entire stage in the background.

Maybe the better solution would be to deactivate spaces altogether when stage manager is active? Pick one multitasking mode or the other, but not have both competing with each other?

EDIT: I suppose, if you wanted to maximize freedom and customization, you could have a switch in the operating system that allows you to have a stage span displays or not.

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This is a screenshot from Monterey. If you unselect “Displays have separate Spaces” in Ventura it might let stages span displays.

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That was a great idea. I just tried it, though and it doesn’t work. Once you deactivate separate spaces, the system also disables stage manager.

That’s a bummer then - and a huge plus to Spaces over Stage Manager

It’s starting to grow on me, too. (On the Mac, that is; it’s not available on my 2020 iPad Air.) I’ll likely use it for a week or so to see if it clicks for me.

One thing I’m wondering about: I’m pretty sure that in one of the screen images @MacSparky shared the piles (bad name, I agree) were on the right of the screen. I’m not seeing a setting to enable this behavior. Is there something I’m missing?

For anybody using Stage Manager:

  1. on ventura;
  2. with multiple displays

Have you seen an issue where you are working on the stage on Display 1 and want to bring in an app in the Recent Apps (also on Display 1) onto the stage of Display 1, but it somehow magically jumps to the Recent Apps on Display 2? I have this happen a lot, but not always. Don’t know if I’m doing something wrong or if this is one of the areas of Stage Manager that is not quite refied yet.

I’m on an M1 Max MacBook Pro.

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Yes, it seems very broken when connected to the studio display.

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I forgot that instead of dragging you can use Shift-Click over the app you are trying to bring from the Recent Apps to the Stage. I still would like drag and drop to work properly here, but this will be sufficient to mitigate the problem for now.

One thing that bothers me with Stage Manager (on the iPad) is if I’m writing an email and the switch to a different app for a moment, when I return to email the compose window is hidden behind the email main window (which always maximizes). There doesn’t seem to be a way to get back to the compose window without manually resizing the main window. This happens every single time, regardless of whether the main window is maximized or not beforehand.

Is there some way of showing all of the windows on a given stage?

That behavior you are describing would be totally annoying. It is not happening on my iPad. If I switch to a different app set and return, my compose window stays in the position that I left it in. Maybe a shut down/re-set will straighten yours back out?

With a Magic Keyboard, you can use globe+back tick to cycle through apps on the current stage. I haven’t figured out how to do this when I’m in “tablet mode” other than by resizing or moving the windows.

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Thank you! That works perfectly!

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