Yes folks the next update to Mac OS is available for download from Apple. This has made it the latest desktop operating system available for MACS.
Called as macOS High Sierra 10.13, the software upgrade brings ample of new features such as:
- Apple File System for Macs with SSDs (APFS),
- Safari 11,
- iCloud file sharing,
- update to Photos app etc.
- Metal 2
The OS High Sierra throws in some noticeable changes for Mac owners, but makes a bunch of inner hidden improvements for the best performance. All Macs launched in mid 2010 or later can upgrade to the new OS for free !!
Users have to just visit the App Store on their Macs and download the High Sierra update for their Macs.
So what are these new features all about ? Let us go through all of these one by one ..
- Apple File System (APFS)
APFS is a file system only for Macs with an all-flash storage built in. Currently, Fusion drives cant be converted to this new file system. However, Apple has confirmed that the update will come to Fusion drives later.
Previously Apple’s HFS+ file system has been in use since 1998. It was rolled out to iOS devices with the release of the software version 10.3. The new file system
offers crash protection, strong file encryption, support for 64-bit inode number, easier backups, instantaneous file copying, better navigation for common tasks
- HEVC and HEIF Media File Formats
With High Sierra, Apple is introducing new formats for photos and videos. The HEVC format for Videos and HEIF for photos is built to retain quality of the media files, while file compressing the sizes saving precious disk space. The formats are already supported by iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone X and the 2017 iPad Pros, so does the new macOS now.
- Safari browser. The browser can be updated without installing the new OS as well. Safari 11 allows users to customise settings for individual websites and save these custom settings for future use. The same can also be accessed from the Preferences tab in Safari. These custom settings include controls for enabling ad blockers, using Reader, setting page zoom, auto-playing media, setting camera permissions and more. Apple has also added Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) to Safari 11. ITP uses machine learning to block third-party cookie trackers to improve user privacy.
- Photos App
Now one will notice a bunch of improvements to the native Photos app on Macs. This is one of the most noticeable changes that the software update brings with it. The Photos App will now display a sidebar which be a navigational area instead of the top tabs that Apple used earlier. The sidebar will display five sections: Library, Devices, Shared, Albums, and Projects.
A toolbar on top of the screen will allow users to toggle between different editing sidebars, making for a clutter-free interface. There are also new tools to edit Live Photos and users will be able to select a static image called ‘Key Photo’ to represent a Live Photo, along with the ability to trim, apply effects, mute clips and more.
Users will also be able to launch third-party photo editing apps like Luminar, Aurora HDR and more straight from the native Photos app. The images edited using third-party apps will be stored right back into the main Photos library.
- Metal 2
Metal 2 is Apple’s advanced graphics technology which helps in speech recognition, natural language processing and computer vision. Metal 2 combined with Thunderbolt 3 port will allow Mac users to take advantage of powerful external GPUs.
Apple is working with developers to create VR content, which will come to Macs later this year.