When you do daily work on the computer, you often have several windows open, as well as various apps, browser tabs, and have potentially set up your computer to have multiple desktops.
But all those windows and programs can leave you feeling distracted and unable to focus, especially if some windows have content running in the background or only take up part of the screen. The sea of windows can make it really difficult to focus on the current task.
Luckily, there’s a solution to it. By diming the non-active and distracting windows on the screen, the HazeOver app helps you focus on the current task.
What Is HazeOver?
HazeOver is a distraction dimmer that helps you focus on only the window you are currently using. It makes the current window standout by fading out all other background windows.
You can control how dark the background windows appear with a custom gesture. This way, you have fewer distractions and can work more productively.
How Does HazeOver Work?
After you installed and run the HazeOver, you’ll notice that your screen will look different, as shown here:
You can see there are many windows opened on the desktop, but only the current window is highlighted, all others at the back are dimmed. This means only what you currently need grabs your attention, and everything else becomes background noise.
Highlight the active window and dim the background
Once installed, HazeOver can be opened from the menu bar. When you click its icon, you can set the degree of darkness for background windows, disable HazeOver, or disable it for a specific app.
Background windows can be dimmed anywhere from 0 to 100% automatically (depending on what you choose), and when you switch your active window, HazeOver will automatically switch which window is dimmed as well. You don’t have to do any extra selections or adjustments.
HazeOver is great for people who work on large screens or who tend to have several different windows open at once. It significantly decreases the number of distractions from background windows. Because they are less visible, your eyes are less likely to drift around the screen or lose track of what you intended to work on.
You can see the difference between working with and without Hazeover in these screenshots:
From the pictures, it’s easy to notice the difference. The first screen feels cluttered, while the second feels more streamlined and easier to look at.
HazeOver comes with a sleek interface, but also supports shortcuts so that you can adjust its effects with even more ease. Just go to Preferences > Shortcuts and choose a custom gesture or key combination for each action.
You can also adjust which settings are available in the menu bar in order to make HazeOver even simpler.
Flexible Options for Multiple Displays
If you’re using a computer setup that has multiple displays, HazeOver has a couple of options to adjust to the situation. It will either dim all the windows on all displays that don’t have keyboard focus or highlight the active window on both displays regardless of keyboard focus.
What does that mean? The first option diming all windows on displays – it means only the active window in the active display can be highlighted, all other windows will be dimmed.
The second option means it will highlight all active windows in every display. This way, you can have an active highlighted window on both displays, which allows you to view two sets of information at once without distraction.
Besides the degree of dimming, HazeOver also lets you customize a few other things.
For example, the default dimming shade is black, but you have the freedom to choose any color you prefer. You can also switch between highlighting one window only and highlighting all the windows associated with a specific app. Lastly, you can change the duration of the dimming animation to make it easier on your eyes.
Pricing & Platform Compatibility
As of this writing, HazeOver is currently available for Mac only. The app has a free trial, and you can download it from HazeOver website, or from the Mac App Store. After the free trial, you have to pay a one time fee of $4.99.
HazeOver is also available with the subscription service Setapp, which offers a 7-day free trial before charging $9.99 per month.
Is HazeOver Worth It?
HazeOver is very simple and easy to use. It offers a great user experience, a sleek interface, and flexible settings.
If you really want to get rid of the distraction that comes from having many windows or would like to save time when managing your windows, then the $4.99 fee is worth to improve your productivity.
HazeOver is a great window dimmer for Mac. It’s so simple to use and a tool that can help you craft your workflow to be more efficient. It eliminates worries about managing multiple windows and can help keep your focus on tasks. Give it a try and see how it can help you.
Jessica is the co-founder and content manager. She has been fascinated by the startup culture in Silicon Valley and she loves building things from zero to one. When she is not writing, she loves getting close to nature and shoot photos with her iPhone and Canon EOS 80D.