Apple announced macOS Big Sur at WWDC 2020 and dropped its first beta right after. Since then, the company has gone on to release a dozen beta updates for macOS Big Sur but did not talk about its public release. At its ‘One more thing’ event today, Apple has finally announced the public release date of macOS Big Sur alongside its new Apple Silicon Macs.
macOS Big Sur will be released to the public on November 12. Big Sur is one of the biggest updates to macOS with Apple adding support for its Apple Silicon chips under the hood. There’s a major UI overhaul as well, with almost every single part of the UI/UX being worked upon. There’s a new Notification Center and Control Center as well for quickly accessing important system settings and notifications.
macOS Big Sur is compatible with MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models released in 2013 or later, Mac Mini and iMac released in 2014 and later, Mac Pro from 2013 or later, 2015 or newer MacBook.
Below is a look at some of the major new features of macOS Big Sur:
macOS Big Sur Top Features
Refined User Interface
Right from the get-go, macOS Big Sur will grab your attention with its refined user interface. It’s probably the biggest visual overhaul since Yosemite, but on a whole new level. The dock strikingly resembles that of the iPhone and iPad, with updated icons that look more consistent in terms of design. The menu bar is also more translucent and merges well with the desktop background. Furthermore, application windows look rounded, cleaner, and uncluttered. Things look drastically different and could take some getting used to, but let’s admit — the macOS UI looked dated, and Big Sur delivers on that front.
New Control Center
The new macOS Big Sur Control Center should quickly feel familiar to anyone who has used an iPhone or iPad. It pops up on the upper-right corner of the screen and provides quick access to connectivity, brightness, and playback controls. It evens lets you dig into elements à la Haptic Touch-style and reveal more options — for example, clicking and holding the Brightness slider will reveal the Dark Mode and True Tone controls. You can also drag elements out of the control center and stick them in the menu bar for faster access.
Redesigned Native Apps
As part of macOS Big Sur’s visual overhaul, apps not only look beautiful with prominently rounded curves, but Apple has also redesigned the various user elements for a streamlined user experience. Apps now feature full-height sidebars and spacious toolbars that make working with apps a breeze. Subtle animations, such as the expanding Search bar in Mail, also make interactions a treat.
If you used a third-party web browser on your Mac, then it’s time to seriously reconsider switching back to Safari. With macOS Big Sur, Apple’s native browser comes with an improved user interface, where you can quickly customize the start page with background images, remove unwanted features (such as the Frequently Visited list), and so on. It also sports the ability to preview tabs, which is just ideal when you’ve got lots of stuff going on within a single Safari window.
That aside, Safari also provides a significant performance bump, with Apple claiming the browser to be over 50 percent faster than Google Chrome. And it also does that with improved power efficiency, where you should get at an additional hour’s worth of browsing time on your MacBook compared to the competition.
Faster macOS Updates
Hated the fact that your Mac took hours to update itself? You are not alone — system software updates often take a ridiculous amount of time to complete even on the fastest Macs. But you don’t have to worry about that once you’ve got macOS Big Sur installed. Incremental software updates will then run in the background and finish significantly faster than before.
Are you looking forward to the release of the macOS Big Sur? Do you also plan to buy one of the new M1 Apple Silicon Macs? Drop a comment and let us know!
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