KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 28 — The latest version of the Mac operating system, Sonoma, is now available for download.
Unlike Microsoft’s Windows operating system, for the past 10 years since 2013, Mac operating system updates have been free.
I downloaded it myself last night to try on a MacBook Pro M2 Max and so far so good.
Of course the first thing I noticed was a brand new login screen wallpaper and the login prompt being a lot smaller and further down the screen, instead of being smack dab in the centre.
The update will be supported on iMac Pros from 2017 and later, MacBook Pros and Mac minis from 2018 and later iMacs, MacBook Air, Mac Pros from 2019 and later.
Obviously the new Mac Studio desktop from last year will also be Sonoma-ready.
Now should you update? It depends on how old your machine is and how it has fared with recent updates but if you have qualms you can first back up your important files or wait till the next Sonoma update.
What you get this time around:
Widgets: Yes, this has been a bit of a joke in the Android community but Apple’s widgets allow more customisation of the desktop if that’s your thing.
I’m a minimalist who keeps just one Word document on my desktop for use as a scratchpad of sorts and that’s it but I’ve added a few widgets already.
To get started, just right-click on your desktop screen and select from the various widgets available. I added a Calendar widget as I’ve been missing appointments lately as well as one for TikTok search.
You can even move over your iPhone widgets to your desktop, thanks to the Continuity feature.
There are also new screen savers that can even double up as desktop wallpapers.
Apple has also tweaked videoconferencing on the Mac, to allow Presenter Overlays as well as Reactions. Think hearts, hand gestures and the like.
You also get an updated Safari browser with enhanced secure experiences as Private Browsing now locks windows when not in use and blocking trackers more effectively.
You can also now add websites to your Dock from Safari so you can access your favourite cat videos faster.
For those who like separation between their work and personal lives, you can now have browsing profiles when searching on Safari.
I guess the gamers on Reddit’s /macgaming will be interested in seeing how well Apple’s Game Mode does.
It promises to improve frame rates, reduce input and audio latency with wireless game controllers as well as AirPods.
Will have to check it out as soon as I have time to play one of this year’s biggest games, Baldur’s Gate 3, that has just recently come out for Mac.
Other games to look forward to on Mac: Death Stranding (Director’s cut), Stray, SnowRunner and Layers of Fear.
Some other quality of life updates: PDFs and scans can be viewed inside notes, with links between notes now supported.
Passwords can now also be shared among a group; an interesting feature that will likely be used more in family settings like helping Nana remember her email password.
You can update your Mac OS from System Settings>General>Software Update or just search ‘Software Update’ from your Spotlight search bar and from there click to update, making sure you have enough space.