Here is a roundup of everything you need to know about the macOS Big Sur update and how it will potentially change the future of laptops PCs.
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Apple announced macOS Big Sur on the first day of this year's WWDC, the World Wide Developer Conference - Apple's trademark event to launch new software updates. No surprises - the latest update on the operating system contains a number of highlights - rolling out with a redesigned interface and new features.
As mentioned earlier, the new macOS is called Big Sur. What many haven't noticed is that it's also version 11. For the first time in almost two decades, Apple has changed the number. Previously, there were just minor updates to version 10. A change in version number signifies that Apple believes the new OS will be revolutionary compared to its predecessor.
The menu bar is slightly transparent to blend with the wallpaper and has received new features. One of them is the control center, similar to that on an iPhone. You're allowed to control your Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, etc. Applications also have a full-height sidebar like on iPads.
The dock has a new appearance with floating icons, with the icons themselves redesigned to look more uniform. The startup chime has made a comeback after a few years and when you boot up your Mac, a sound can be heard (which older Mac users will recognize!).
Widgets, first introduced by Google, have made their way to the Apple ecosystem and are now part of both iPhones and Macs.
Widgets are square-shaped icons that allow users to perform a number of tasks, including checking the weather or your daily schedule. They are added to your home screen for easy access and convenience.
The startup page interface allows users to set wallpapers and choose which icons should appear. Extensions can be searched using the Mac App Store as a dedicated category. A privacy button has been integrated with the toolbar, allowing us to monitor what information a website is tracking such as saved passwords.
Webpage translation has also been added and will enable web page translations to seven different languages. This feature has previously been seen on Google Chrome.
Tab design has been made more elegant to make more tabs visible at once, and hoovering over a tab now opens a small preview.
The messaging app has received updates to make it similar to the iPhones and iPad versions. Important contacts can be pinned for more accessible and convenient access. During conversations, you can reply to specific messages and even mention someone, like on WhatsApp. Group icons are also customizable. A particular search engine for messaging has been included as well. You're allowed to search for specific phrases and links in conversations.
The inclusion of a cycling feature is welcome, and cyclists are shown the best route to their destination, taking traffic and roadwork into account.
There are reviews of famous places that people may want to visit and users are provided with a virtual 3D model of the map, as previously seen on Google Street View.
Moreover, you're allowed to explore indoor areas such as shopping malls and airports.
Pre-Download Application Information
Facetime can detect when sign language is used and the person using it is shown at the top of the screen, to make them more prominent.
Your Mac will learn your charging routine, and optimized battery charging will be activated only when it's your predicted charging time. The feature ensures minimum battery degradation for longer battery life. A battery chart is also available for battery history of the past 24 hours.
App Purchase Sharing
Families will be able to access subscription offers for in-app purchases.
Video editing features such as cropping, filters, exposure, etc.have been added. Photos can be improved after taking them through vibrancy and lighting effects, retouch tools, and much more. Navigation for media files is more natural with fluid motions and editable captions.
Apple has a positive reputation for excellent software support and this year is no different. Here is a list of Big Sur compatible Macs.
- 2015 and later MacBooks
- 2013 and later MacBook Air
- 2013 and later MacBook Pro
- 2014 and later Mac Mini
- 2014 and later iMac
- 2017 and later iMac Pro
- 2013 and later Mac Pro