As announced by Apple earlier this week, macOS Big Sur is now available for download for all compatible Macs.
macOS Big Sur is a massive update that brings a major UI overhaul along with some major usability improvements. macOS Big Sur also adds support for M1-based Macs and brings a notable performance improvement as well.
macOS Big Sur Compatible Macs
macOS Big Sur is compatible with the following Macs:
- 2015 and newer MacBook
- 2015 and newer MacBook Air
- 2013 and newer MacBook Pro
- 2014 and newer Mac mini
- 2014 and later iMac
- 2017 and later iMac Pro
- 2013 and later Mac Pro
You can check out some of the top features of macOS Big Sur below.
macOS Big Sur New 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.
Do you plan on installing macOS Big Sur today itself or are you going to hold on to installing the update for a few days? Drop a comment and let us know!