Like iOS 11, you can try out Apple‘s upcoming macOS update — dubbed High Sierra — for yourself, too. Unveiled yesterday at WWDC, the operating system boasts a bevy of upgrades over its predecessor, Sierra. For starters, High Sierra is moving to an all new file management system, Apple File System (APFS), for enhanced performance and “makes common operations such as copying files and directories instantaneous, helps protect data from power outages and system crashes and keeps files safe and secure with native encryption.” Support for industry-standard high-efficiency video encoding — HEVC (H.265) — also vastly improves streaming and playback of 4K video files. The addition of Metal 2 will also tap into the upcoming Macs’ GPU power and even allow for support of VR content creation — a first for Macs. Finally, Photos is getting an overhaul, too, that includes a new always-on sidebar for organization and a redesigned Edit view.
“macOS High Sierra delivers important forward-looking technologies and new opportunities for developers wanting to tap into the power of machine learning and create immersive VR content on the Mac,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. “The core technology innovations in macOS High Sierra, combined with our advances in hardware, will continue to push the Mac forward in exciting new ways.”
Check out some additional points of interest below and sign up now for the Apple’s Developer Program to test it out for yourself. A public beta is on track for a release later this month while High Sierra will officially release as a free upgrade this fall.
- Safari can automatically use Reader to open articles in a clean, uncluttered format, while Autoplay Blocking stops media with audio from automatically playing in the browser
- Intelligent Tracking Prevention in Safari uses machine learning to identify and remove the tracking data that advertisers employ to follow users’ web activity
- Mail search gets faster and easier with Top Hits, which puts the most relevant results at the top of a user’s message list
- Siri on the Mac responds with a natural and more expressive voice, and when using Apple Music, it learns music preferences, creates custom playlists and answers music trivia
- Notes adds simple tables, where a user can type in cells, make edits and move rows and columns
- Spotlight provides flight status information, including departure and arrival times, delays, gates, terminals and even a map of the flight path
- iCloud File Sharing lets users share any file stored in iCloud Drive and collaborate with other people