Disable Mac pointer acceleration from macOS 14 Sonoma: Here's how!

You may or may not have noticed: If you move the mouse connected to the Apple Mac quickly, the cursor on the display accelerates more than if you move slowly. If you move the mouse slowly, you have to keep moving it for the same display distance. But slow, precise movements are possible. This is due to the mouse pointer acceleration built into macOS. It simplifies Mac usage by improving navigation on larger or multiple monitors, as well as in small spaces. Away macOS 14 Sonoma you can turn off the pointer acceleration function manually for the first time - probably because of the focus on video games.

Accelerated mouse pointer or constant speed cursor? Starting with macOS 14 Sonoma, you can switch between these two options manually, easily via the System Preferences.
Accelerated mouse pointer or constant speed cursor? Starting with macOS 14 Sonoma, you can switch between these two options manually, easily via the System Preferences.

From macOS Sonoma: Disable mouse acceleration in the system settings

You can already use the new option for deactivating the automatically adjusted mouse pointer speed in the Beta version test from macOS 14. How you can install it now without a paid developer account, you can find out here. But first let's continue with the setting for the mouse pointer. You can find them this way:

  1. Click on the in the menu bar at the top left Apple logo ()
  2. In its drop-down menu, select the System settings ... from
  3. In the list of settings (on the left) you choose in the bottom area Mouse from
  4. Then click the new "More options..." button on the right
  5. Disable the "Pointer Acceleration" slider and click the "Done" button
You can find the mouse settings in the macOS system settings. Beginning with Sonoma, there is a "More Options..." button.
You can find the mouse settings in the macOS system settings. Beginning with Sonoma, there is a "More Options..." button.
In the other options for the mouse on the Apple Mac you can then disable pointer acceleration. I find that this is immediately noticeable afterwards (at least at the highest pointer speed).
In the other options for the mouse on the Apple Mac you can then disable pointer acceleration. I find that this is immediately noticeable afterwards (at least at the highest pointer speed).

A noticeable difference after disabling pointer acceleration

I can't remember Apple ever publicly communicating pointer acceleration or showing it when setting up macOS. It's a system-wide help that lets the mouse pointer move faster from A to B when you're in a hurry. If you need slow, precise movements, then the cursor moves like that. 

It's all implemented so well that turning off the feature is immediately noticeable. Navigating the System Preferences window becomes much more difficult right away, because short display distances have been realized at the same speed as going from one display side to the other. I think for regular system and app usage you're better off with pointer acceleration enabled.

Step-by-step instructions for breastfeeding with the emeibaby carrier: Adjust mouse pointer speed via terminal

Constant mouse speed probably intended for video games

From macOS 14 Sonoma there is the video game mode, which ensures that the CPU and GPU capacities of the Apple silicon reserved for the video game being played. This slows down other processes in the background, but the game runs smoother. In addition, the Bluetooth transmission is improved and thus the accessory latency is reduced. 

There is also a faster way for developers to bring their Windows games to the Mac with the Game Porting Toolkit. So I think the new feature to disable pointer acceleration also plays into the issue. With shooters, games like Rocket League and the like, you benefit from the precision of a constant mouse speed. Gamers prefer to adjust this universally via the DPI number of their mouse.

More on this topic: Gaming on the Mac – Will macOS turn Sonoma around?

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