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How to setup Continuity to sync your Apple devices

Continuity comes with the latest updates of Apple operating systems, Yosemite and iOS 8.1 or later, and includes multiple features for a seamless workflow.

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Apple recently introduced a new suite of features, called Continuity, designed to help you connect all of your devices more seamlessly.

Continuity comes with the latest updates of Apple operating systems, Yosemite and iOS 8.1 or later, and includes features called Handoff, Phone Calling, SMS/MMS, and Instant Hotspot. Here’s how to set the features up on your Apple device.

Handoff

For instance, Handoff allows you to move a task from one device to another. You can create a text or e-mail on your iPhone and finish the message without saving a draft on your MacBook. There is no online cloud for data storage but rather a far more integrated home network.

Once your devices are updated, you need to see if Handoff is enabled. For an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, go to Settings > General > Handoff and Suggested Apps. For a Mac, go to Apple menu > System Preferences > General. Select to allow Handoff between your devices. For an Apple Watch, you’ll need to go the app on your iPhone and select General.

To set up Handoff, you must first make sure two devices with Continuity installed are near each other and each device is signed into iCloud with the same Apple ID. For an Apple Watch, use the app on your iPhone and go to General > Apple ID. After making sure all of the devices are logged in, turn on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for all of them.

Your devices should now be connected. From there, Handoff will automatically work with Mail, Maps, Safari, Reminders, Calendar, Contacts, Pages, Numbers, Keynote and many third-party apps. You can use any of these features to make sure Handoff is working.

Phone Relay

Relay or Phone Calling allows you take a phone call on any device, not just your actual phone. To relay to your iPhone iPad, go to your iPhone first and select Settings > Phone > Calls on Other Devices. Enable Allow Calls on Other Devices and the make sure to choose the correct iPad. On your iPad, go to Settings > FaceTime and enable Calls from iPhone. You will now be able to take and make calls from your iPad.

To allow your Mac to take and make calls, go to your iPhone settings and select your Mac the same way you chose the iPad. On your Mac, launch FaceTime. Click on the FaceTime top menu > Preferences and click the checkbox next to Calls from iPhone. You can also transfer mid-call on to different devices.

SMS/MMS

To transfer SMS/MMS texts to other devices, launch Settings on your iPhone. Go to Messages > Text Message Forwarding and enable every device you want to send texts to. An authorization code will appear on your other device. Enter the code and click Allow. You are now able to take and create messages from other devices.

Instant Hotspot

The Instant Hotspot allows you to share your iPhone’s or iPad’s data connection with your Wi-Fi-only devices. To set the hotspot up, go to your iPhone and launch Settings. Tap on Personal Hotspot and select On. On your cellular iPad, go to Settings > Wi-Fi > Personal Hotspot and select the name of your device.

To connect your Mac to the hotspot, go to your Mac’s menu bar and select Wi-Fi. Click on the device being used as your hotspot and the Mac will automatically connect.

Continuity and the future

A few other features are included in Continuity, such as Airdrops to move files from one device to another, a Universal Clipboard and Auto Unlock. As time goes on, perhaps Apple will add more features. As for now, this is a big step in interconnectivity and may be the norm for the future. If your security is up to par, you may want to jump on this train sooner rather than later.

Do you use Continuity? What is your favorite feature? Let us know in the comments below.

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Kayla Matthews is a technology writer and blogger who runs ProductivityBytes.com. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter to read all of her latest posts!

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