Apple has officially released the latest version of macOS, named Big Sur. This is the first iteration of the Operating System that is optimized for Apple’s new M1 chip, which is powering the new Mac mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro 13.
Big Sur brings a fresh new design as well as multiple notable enhancements to Safari, Maps, Messages and privacy. It looks familiar design-wise but employs the use of white space for easier navigation. The dark icons are made more consistent with the rest of the Apple ecosystem. The inside apps buttons and controls appear when needed and recede when they aren’t, reducing visual complexity and allowing the user to focus on the content.
The new Control Center lets the user quickly access settings like DND mode, brightness, display, and keyboard, while the revamped Notification Center shows more information at a glance with interactive notifications and new widgets.
Apple claims that Big Sur comes with the biggest update to Safari since its original launch in 2003. The company says this newest version is 50% faster than Chrome. Safari finally supports both Netflix and YouTube in 4K HDR, while tab switching is faster and more efficient with page previews upon hovering over tabs and displaying favicons by default.
macOS Big Sur compatibility:
In terms of compatibility, macOS Big Sur is available for free download on a range of Mac machines listed below.
MacBook 2015 and later models
MacBook Air 2013 and later models
MacBook Pro late 2013 and later models
Mac mini 2014 and later models
iMac 2014 and later models
iMac Pro 2017 and later models
Mac Pro 2013 and later models
How to download and install macOS Big Sur:
One can check for the macOS Big Sur update manually by going to System Preferences -> Software Update after going onto the Apple menu from the top-left corner of your screen. Users can also find the update by visiting the About This Mac option from the Apple menu and then clicking the Software Update button. Alternatively, macOS Big Sur can be downloaded directly from the Mac App Store.