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How to Setup and Use Handoff on your iPhone & iPad

Handoff is a great feature that allows iPhone, iPad or iPod touch and Mac users to continue their current activity on another device with supported apps. Imagine you are jotting down important notes on your iMac and want to continue working on them while commuting, do you send them to yourself via email? Nah! Just use Handoff to transfer the current file to your iPad or iPhone and keep working on the notes in a seamless fashion.

Handoff works with the native “Mail” app, “Notes” app, currently opened websites in “Safari” and many more of Apple’s default apps. Simply pick up wherever you’ve left the other device with no need to copy and paste, retype or email anything.

What do I need to use Handoff?

The requirements are as such: Handoff can be activated using any two iOS devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod touch) or Mac OS X devices that are signed into the same iCloud account, you need at least iOS 8 – while iOS 9 offers additional features discussed below. To use Handoff on a Mac, you need a fairly recent Mac (Mid 2012 or later) or an upgraded WiFi-BT-Card, if available. You can check the system requirements for Mac OS X Continuity and Handoff on Apple’s dedicated info page.

How to use Handoff from your Multitasking Screen on iOS

To use Handoff, start writing a note or email, or begin any of the aforementioned activities involving one of the supported apps. Make sure that bluetooth is enabled on all respective devices and that they are connected to the same network. All devices are required to use an identical iCloud account for this to work. Once you’ve verified all of the above, you can even lock the first of the two devices and pick up where you left off using the Handoff feature.

Double-press the Home Button on your second iOS device, such as your iPad or iPhone or iPod touch, to enter the Multitasking view. At the bottom left of the screen, you’ll find a special Handoff button for taking over your latest activity on the more recently used device. On older iOS versions such as iOS 8, the Handoff feature looks like this:



To pick up writing your email, simply scroll all the way to the left on your multitasking screen and tap the respective Handoff representation, indicated by an app icon and name of the device.