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Concepts show how a Dynamic Dock would look like in macOS

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Concepts show how a Dynamic Dock would look like in macOS

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Apple has added new ways of interaction in iOS with Live Activities, which give users a glimpse of important activities in progress, such as media playback or even the estimated time for an Uber to arrive. These interactions can easily be accessed via the Lock Screen or Dynamic Island. But what if Apple brought similar interactions to the Mac? These “Dynamic Dock” concepts show exactly that.

Dynamic Dock for macOS

The first concept, created by Janum Trivedi (via BGR), imagines what it would be like to have dynamic interactions with Mac apps through their icons in the Dock. In a post on Twitter, Trivedi pondered, “What if the macOS dock and its icons were more dynamic and fluid?”

In a short video, the designer shows what his idea would look like in action. By holding the mouse cursor over an icon, the Dock would show expanded actions for that app. For Messages, users would see unread chats. The Music app icon would show media controls, while Safari would show the progress of background downloads.

Trivedi explains that the icons could also be expanded automatically for “temporal reasons,” such as when a new song starts playing. This would work similarly to the Live Activities in Dynamic Island, which expands its size when there’s an important update from an app. John Gruber has noted that the concept resembles a “modern version of the Control Strip” in classic Mac OS.

You can check the concept below:

A second concept created by Andrew Sereda imagines a similar idea. But instead of dynamic icons, the Dock would have a dedicated space for Live Activities, similar to a stack of widgets in iOS. Users would be able to see more than one interaction in the Dock just by scrolling through them.

What to expect from macOS 14?

Apple is expected to announce and release the first beta of macOS 14 next month at WWDC 2023. Unfortunately, there are not many details about what will change with the next macOS update, which suggests that the update will be focused on minor features and refinements.

Meanwhile, iOS 17 and watchOS 10 are believed to include more notable changes:

Do you like the idea of having a Dynamic Dock on your Mac? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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