10 Lesser-known Mac Apps That You MUST Check Out

Utilities • March 1, 2024

lesser known macapps

First of all, this is not the typical coverage of macOS apps. We are sure you would be frustrated seeing the same apps on multiple lists. In addition to being redundant, such best Mac apps lists do not help readers. It is also why we thought of this article: covering at least 10 lesser-known Mac apps that will help our readers to be more enjoyable and productive.

Here’s one thing you might not know about TheSweetBits. We are always in search of great macOS apps. It also means we get our hands on indie apps and new releases before they become popular. In some cases, great apps go unnoticed for a long time. Today, we have compiled 10 of those favorite apps.

Top 10 lesser-known mac apps

#1 Raycast

If you are like us, you have a soft spot for Spotlight (pun intended.) But it does not change the fact that Apple needs to improve Spotlight Search. While it does, you can use Raycast as a more productive alternative for system-wide searches and more.


It is a full collection of features, for those who are wondering. From a built-in calculator to a baseline window manager, multiple utilities are included in Raycast. You can customize things further via add-ons, snippets, or your code. I believe Raycast is not as popular as Alfred, a go-to Spotlight Search alternative.


The QuickTime Player built into macOS is never a great option for media playback. Instead, you can use IINA, a free-to-use media player. This little-known media player is optimized for macOS and works better than the go-to options like VLC.

As you can guess, IINA is free and open source and receives constant updates from the developers. It is also impressive that you get advanced control over subtitles, user interface, and multiple plugins. You can also check out its browser extensions to take control over online streams.

#3 Pixea

Some of you might believe that Preview is the best image viewer for macOS. However, once you start using Pixea, you will change your opinion. I came across this app a few months back. It has changed the way I deal with images on your Mac.

The best part about Pixea is that it practically stays hidden. It does not take up an entire window. Instead, it is possible to watch and shift between image files using keyboard shortcuts. It also comes with almost all the options you would have seen on Preview.

#4 Stats

Most people want to keep track of CPU, GPU, and RAM resources on their Mac but you might first think that most of these system resource monitoring tools are paid. Stats is a free and open-source alternative to the popular iStat Menus, focusing on the essentials.


This lightweight app makes it easy to track different aspects of resource utilization on your Mac. The features include disk utilization, network usage, fan control, and battery level. You may even want to try their multi-time zone clock.

#5 MediaMate

Compared to other Mac apps on this list, MediaMate is small and straightforward. It adds a superb-looking widget to yo/ur Mac interface. This media widget will help you track whenever you have an audio or video file playing in the background.

We’d also add that MediaMate is one of the most customizable options out there. You can control almost every aspect of the app, including notifications, appearance, triggers, etc. You can also use the app to change how the brightness and volume controllers appear on the screen.

#6 MenubarX

We all know the struggle. You need a quick Twitter check, news glance, or email reply, but opening a full browser feels like overkill. Enter MenubarX, a tool that transforms your menu bar into a mini-command center for the web.


From social media and productivity tools to casual games, MenubarX lets you add any webpages. And, it’s all about personalization: resize windows, rearrange them for your workflow, and set up auto-refresh for essential sites. Embrace flexibility with ad blocking, user agent simulation (like iPhone or Kindle!), and even create custom icons for your “mini apps” for a touch of organization and flair.

For me, MenubarX is indeed an app that I cannot live without. And I believe everyone should check it out at least once.

#7 MeetingBar

If you have too many online meetings, keeping track of them can be difficult. With MeetingBar, you get to join all your meetings right from the menu bar. The application works with your calendar apps to track your meeting information and present it in a drop-down menu.

Despite being free and open source, MeetingBar works with more than 50 meeting services, including Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, and Discord. I have found this not-so-popular app a blessing on those days when I need a quick look at my meeting agenda.

#8 MurmurType

MurmurType is that one lesser-known app that makes me feel great about having a Mac in the first place. It is a straightforward transcription tool that can convert speech into text. The best part? It uses the WHISPER model from OpenAI.


Here is what it means. You can use MurmurType to transcribe the content in real time. It does not take up a lot of space or resources. Instead, you can press the keyboard combination, say what you want to type and paste the content whenever it is ready. Things don’t get any easier for a writer.

#9 Shottr

Shottr is a lesser-known screenshot utility that everyone should check out. It is as powerful as, if not more, professional screenshot tools out there. More importantly, you will love Shottr if every pixel matters on an image.

I particularly love the options for color tracking and image size control from the same interface. You can also make use of powerful annotation tools and text recognition technology to make your life easier. I use it as a screen ruler at times.

#10 DisplayBuddy

DisplayBuddy is another great app that I don’t see enough people talking about. It is a blessing for those who struggle with multiple displays. You can use DisplayBuddy to manage the brightness and other aspects of your secondary display through a simple interface.


I have been using the app for almost a couple of years and its compatibility is great. Unless you have an off-brand monitor, DisplayBuddy should work fine. It has been a lifesaver for the multi-monitor setup that I use daily.

Final thoughts

You will notice that 7 out of the 10 applications I mentioned are not only free and open source, but also actively maintained by developers who are constantly pushing updates and improvements. It’s truly inspiring to see what passionate individuals can achieve.

We are sure you found at least some good apps on this list. And, kudos if you already knew about some of these apps. It simply means you have been making better use of your Mac.

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