Previewed at the 2020 Worldwide Developers Conference in June, macOS Big Sur, is the newest version of macOS, set to be released this fall. As the new upgrade, finally, after nearly 20 years, Apple has transitioned from macOS 10 (aka Mac OS X) to macOS 11. And Apple considers the new macOS Big Sur a big update. We could finally be a few days away from finding out the official release date of the Big Sur as Apple announced a launch event confirmed for October 13 where the date might be revealed.
Apple confirmed in WWDC event earlier this year, that Big Sur, as it’s name brings you unmatched levels of power and beauty and definitely introduces a new design and major updates to some the most essential apps on the platform. Since the event, Apple released numerous beta versions for testing. Version 9 was released on 29 September, less than a week after version 8, suggesting that the final version will be here soon…
What’s new in macOS Big Sur?
Apple has decided to leave Intel behind and proceed forward with its own processors inside Macs – known as Apple Silicon. And Big Sur will be the first version that can run on the new Apple Silicon Macs (sometimes described as ARM Macs). Apple’s intent with its update is clear as crystal-“Bringing even more clarity to the software while retaining the mac’s powerful capability and ease of use.” The users who’ve been favouring mac for their studies to business to casual works to other uses, the update would be completely fresh but still familiar to them.
The changes in new macOS Big Sur
While the previous macOS Catalina was supported by many Macs, The new macOS Big Sur would be compatible with limited Macs. Despite, let’s find out the changes brought out in the New macOS Big Sur.
macOS Big Sur has a completely redesigned user interface that brings it much closer to the iPad and iPhone. The update has been on everything from the curvature of window corners to colors and dock icon designs. The revamped look was designed to feel both fresh and familiar at the same time. The windows seem more cleaner and friendlier with rounded edges, the dock is more translucent floating on the screen, and the apps have redesigned icons, all uniform squares with rounded corners.
Buttons and controls for apps appear when needed and disappear when not in use to provide more focus on content, and the customizable menu bar offers access to a customizable Control Center that houses Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and AirDrop controls, keyboard brightness, Do Not Disturb, Dark Mode, sound level, and much more.
The traditional menu bar icon has disappeared but you’ll have access to it by clicking on the time in the menu bar, and you can now click on Notifications and Widgets in the Center to get more information. Even the sounds have been transformed to something, “more pleasing to ear.”
Apple takes this chance of OS upgrade with apps updating too. And one of the apps being updated is Safari. Apple claims this is the biggest update to safari since it’s launch in 2003. And the grand update includes much more than it’s redesign only. Safari is already fast, and according to Apple it’s going to get even faster, 50% more than chrome.
Just along, you’ll now be able to customize your new start page with an image of your selection, add sections like Reading List, Favorites, iCloud Tabs and Siri Suggestions for easy access. Safari privacy has been improved with a Privacy Report that lets users know which trackers Safari is blocking when you visit websites. You can also add a Privacy Report to your start page. Safari will also have tools so you can translate websites in English, Spanish, Chinese, French, German, Russian, or Brazilian Portuguese. This isn’t all. You can expect a lot more than these in the update with safari in the new macOS Big Sur.
The other update is with messages in Big Sur. Messages is now a Mac Catalyst app, which is similar to the Messages app on iOS devices, which also includes some of the new features introduced in iOS 14. Messages is a lot easier to navigate now. Apple made a ton of improvements to the tools you use to create a message.
There’s an ability to Pin upto 9 conversations that you want to keep at the top of the window.
Also, it’s easier to customize the group chats with photos, Memoji, or emoji of your choice.
A handy feature if you are in a group text – you will be able to send inline replies. So you can reply to a particular comment rather than adding your comment to the bottom of the pile. If you want to make sure that someone doesn’t miss your message you can ‘mention’ them – simply type their name – and they will see an alert.
There are lots more features coming to Messages, and the existing features like being able to add fun elements like balloons and confetti to texts remains.
Talking about the photos, the Big Sur will have more editing tools in photos. The Retouch tool is enhanced with machine learning to make your adjustments look better. There are also more tools you can use on videos. Also, Maps has improved for Mac with several features that were limited to iOS only previously.
macOS Big Sur adds Look Around to the Maps app, so you can explore cities in a detailed, street-level view. What’s more helpful is, with indoor maps, you can be detailed about airports and shopping centers beforehand. Maps has a focus on “Helping you get there in a way that’s better for the planet”, so you can expect to see cycling directions, and also, from now on you can set locations on favorites too.
With macOS Big Sur and iOS 14, AirPods automatically switch between active devices paired to the same iCloud account. As with iOS, the Pinned notes section can be expanded or collapsed, and there are additional text styles and formatting options that can be accessed in a flash with the new Quick Styles feature.
Compatibility of macOS 11(Big Sur)
The new macOS Big Sur is compatible with the following Macs:
- MacBook: 2015 and later
- MacBook Air: 2013 and later
- MacBook Pro: Late 2013 and later
- Mac mini: 2014 and later
- iMac: 2014 and later
- iMac Pro: 2017 and later
- Mac Pro: 2013 and later
There were more Macs supported by macOS Catalina. 2012 and Early 2013 MacBook Pro, 2012 MacBook Air, 2012 and 2013 iMac, 2012 Mac mini were also supported by macOS Catalina.
Apple has recently announced the event for October 13, 2020 where it is going to launch few of the Apple products and possibly that is when the new macOS Big Sur will also be launched. Thus, how excited are you mac users for the upgraded version of mac. Did you checkout with the beta versions for Big Sur? How was your experience?