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What Happens If I Turn Off Handoff On iPhone?

What Happens If I Turn Off Handoff On iPhone?

With the iOS 8 update, Apple allows users to share tasks among various iOS devices. You can start your task on one device and continue where you left off on another device. Handoff is especially useful when you are the only person with access to the devices.

If you are sharing your iOS devices with your friends or family, you likely don’t want someone to peek into the activity you are currently doing on your other iOS device. In that case, it is better to turn off Handoff.

But what happens if you turn off Handoff on your iPhone? Let’s find out.

What happens if I turn off Handoff on iPhone?

If you turn off Handoff on your iPhone, you can no longer share tasks between your iOS devices. However, if you are not already using Handoff, turning off Handoff won’t make any noticeable difference. 

If you have shared iOS devices, turning off Handoff will keep anyone else from seeing your activities.

Handoff works for iOS devices that are nearby, connected to the same Wi-Fi and have a shared Apple ID. Therefore, if you use the same Apple ID on all your iOS devices and these devices are shared, it is best to keep Handoff turned off.

Let’s have a look at some of the effects of turning off Handoff on your iPhone.

No cross-device task completion

Sometimes, you may need to switch between devices to complete a task. Handoff allows for that. For example, you start typing an email on your phone but you need to attach a document from your Mac.

Handoff lets you continue composing your email where you left off on your Mac. Just reveal the doc on your Mac to see the Handoff icon and continue your task.

With Handoff turned off, however, you can’t switch to a different device to complete a task. You will have to start your task from scratch on the other device.

No cross-device copy paste

Handoff provides a universal clipboard for you to copy and paste between your iOS devices. You can copy something on your iPhone and then turn on your Mac to paste it there.

This works for texts, photos, documents, etc. You can easily copy and paste across devices.

With Handoff turned off, you can’t copy paste between iOS devices easily without using tricks or external apps.

But also: no snooping on your activities

If you share your iOS devices with your family or friends, Handoff can allow them to look into the tasks you are doing on your iPhone using another nearby iOS device.

For example, if you open a webpage on your phone using Safari, anyone else using a Mac in your proximity can open the same webpage using Handoff.

Not just Safari, there are lots of apps that use Handoff including Mail, Calendars, Contacts, Notes, and other third-party apps.

If you want to keep your activities private, be sure to turn off Handoff on your iPhone and other iOS devices.

How to copy-paste from iPhone to Mac using Handoff

How to copy-paste from iPhone to Mac using Handoff

In the above section I mentioned you can copy paste between your iOS devices. Let’s find out how you can copy (text, photos, etc.) from an iPhone and paste it to your Mac using Handoff.

To make this work, you need to set up a universal clipboard on your iOS devices and then copy paste using this clipboard.

Set up a universal clipboard on your iOS devices

To set up a universal clipboard you have to meet certain Handoff requirements.

  • Both your iOS devices should be in close proximity, say a few meters away from each other.
  • Both devices are signed in with the same Apple ID.
  • Both devices have WiFi and Bluetooth enabled.
  • Both devices have Handoff turned on.

To turn on Handoff on your iPhone go to Settings > General > Airplay & Handoff. Toggle on “Handoff”.

To turn on Handoff on your Mac, go to System Preferences from Apple menu > General. Turn on “Allow Handoff between this Mac and your iCloud devices”.

Use universal clipboard to copy paste between iOS devices

On your iPhone, copy the items you want to paste onto your Mac. the copied content will automatically be available on the clipboard of the nearby device.

The copied items remain on the clipboard of the nearby device for a few minutes or until you copy something else on any of the devices.

Now paste the items on your Mac as you normally would. The items copied on your iPhone will be pasted on your Mac.

Now that you know the basics about Handoff, you may wonder if you can use Handoff cross-platforms e.g. between iOS and Android or Windows.

Now that you know what Handoff is and what happens if you turn it off, let’s look at a few common issues with the feature on the iPhone, and how to fix them. 

Can’t enable Handoff on iPhone

If you can’t enable Handoff on your iPhone, e.g. you see the option is grayed out, here are a few possible reasons:

Unsupported phone model or OS version

Handoff is not available on older iPhone models and/or older iOS versions. Make sure that you have iPhone 5 or later and your phone is running iOS 8 or above.

Screen Time restrictions

Screen Time restrictions may affect certain iPhone features including Handoff. Disable Screen Time restrictions then try enabling the Handoff feature on your phone again.

Configuration profiles

Configuration profiles restrict certain apps and features for security reasons. These profiles are often installed by your workplace MDM solutions or by your school network.

Installed configuration profiles may restrict the Handoff feature on your phone. You can see the installed profiles through Settings > General > VPN & Device Management.

The Handoff feature should start working again once you remove these profiles from your phone.

Handoff is working from iPhone to iPad but not the other way around

Another common issue is that Handoff may work when connecting from iPhone to iPad but not the other way around.

If that’s the case, first make sure all the requirements are fulfilled on both the devices as mentioned in “Set up a universal clipboard on your iOS devices” above.

If these are met, try to reset the Handoff feature on both devices. First disable Handoff on through Settings > General > Airplay & Handoff and turn off Handoff.

Restart the devices, turn Handoff back on on your iPad and iPhone, and try again.

If Handoff still isn’t working, you may need to contact Apple Support to report the issue.

Can’t find Handoff option on Mac

Just like the iPhone, not all Mac models support the Handoff feature. If you own an older model with an outdated OS version, you may not find the Handoff feature in your System Preferences.

Handoff is available for Mac models launched in mid 2012 and later running OS X Yosemite or later. The models before 2012 are not supported for the Handoff feature.