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How can I open Control Center without the mouse—only the keyboard?

Screenshot of Control Center for context
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2 Answers 2

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Here are two ways to get into Control Center without the mouse on macOS.


Option 1:

Using: "Full Keyboard Access" to navigate

  • Settings found in: System PreferencesAccessibilityShortcut
    • Check "Full Keyboard Access"
  • Open: Control Center using Fn+C
  • Use: Tab /Shift+Tab to navigate

Tip:

  • Activate "Full Keyboard Access" from shortcut Fn+Opt+Cmd + F5 .
  • Deselect all other accessibility shortcuts.
  • Shortcut: "Show Accessibility controls" must be turned on
    • Go to: System PreferencesKeyboardShortcutsAccessibility → at bottom
  • "Full Keyboard Access" doesn't have to be activated to open "Control Center with Fn+C

Note: (I found navigating Control Center with keys a little hard in the beginning but with practice I'm sure it'll be easier. Hit Tab + H for Help and Tab + Z for an Action Menu for each selected item.

screenshot of Accessibility shortcuts


Option 2 (my favorit)

1. Record your actions with "Automator"

  • Open: Automator → New: Application
  • Record action: when you click the Control Center icon in status bar
  • Keep clicking if you want more steps
  • Save Application. Stores in /Users/[name]/Library/Services/[app name.app] (mine was "Open Control Center.app")

Tip: Turn up Playback Speed to x10

2. Launch new app with Quick Action + shortcut

  • Open: Automator → New: Quick Action
  • Search: "Launch Application" in Action Library → Drag into work area
  • Choose your app in list: Select app "Other" or drag from Finder into little box
  • Save Quick Action. Eg. "Launch Control Center"

Create shortcut to your new Quick Action/Service

  • Go to: System PreferencesKeyboardShortcutsServices
  • At the bottom you'll find your action: General - [quickActionName]
  • Check and give it your shortcut, eg. ctrl+shift+C

Notes:

  • Might still requires mouse to navigate, but you're already there
  • Doesn't work if you've hidden Status Bar
  • If you move the CC-icon in status bar you'll have to re-record

IMPORTANT!!

  • Must give Accessibility permissions to your new Application
  • Go to: System PreferencesSecurity & PrivacyPrivacyAccessibility
  • Unlock to make changes
  • Add or drag your application to this list

Note: not the Quick Action that runs from your shortcut, but the first application you created that has the "Whach Me Do"


Thanks @Merchako for the tip on Fn+C, it helped me get started on figuring out a way to control that window

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Type Fn+C to open Control Center.

As far as I know, there's no way to interact with it after opening it, but at least you can see the main status of each control.

I've only gotten this to work on the keyboards of M1 and M1 Max MacBooks (Monterey). It doesn't work with the Nuphy75 external keyboard (neither wired nor wireless).

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