MacOS Sierra Screen Review, Your Mac’s Latest Operating System
Apple’s newest operating system, macOS Sierra , won’t be out until fall, but the public beta is open to anyone brave enough to install it now. If you’d rather leave your Mac alone but are still wondering what’s new, don’t worry, we’ll take a look at all the new features.
Siri works much the same as on iOS, but with one problem
An iconic feature of macOS Sierra is Siri. With it, you can do pretty much anything you can do with Siri on your phone , combined with everything you can do with Spotlight. You can ask questions such as “Show me the TXT files in my Documents folder”, “What’s the weather in Los Angeles?” or “How is the connection spelled?” You can even search the Internet for requests such as Show me pictures of the puppies or Show me directions to Taco Bell.
However, there is one caveat. To use Siri on your Mac, you either need to click the Siri icon in the menu bar or Dock, or press a keyboard shortcut (by default, hold Command + Spacebar). There is no “Hey Siri” speakerphone like iOS, which is a shame for anyone hoping they can just start talking to their Mac like magic. That said, Siri is there, and once you’ve gone through manual activation, it’s pretty handy.
Photos improve search by showing faces, memories and places
Like its iOS counterpart, the Photos app on Mac is undergoing a number of organizational improvements. The big new trick here is the smart search feature. Photos scan all of your images and identify objects, which allows you to search for specific objects in an image, such as a duck, a car, a birthday cake, or whatever. Three new albums have also been added to the Photos app: Places, which displays all of your photos, Faces, which allows you to identify people, and Memories, which automatically creates special slideshows based on people, places, holidays, and T. D.
ICloud sync makes it easy to share files between devices
It’s not much, but it is now possible to sync your Documents and Desktop folders with iCloud, making it much easier to share files between Macs. You’ll find the option to turn this on or off in System Preferences> iCloud> iCloud Drive> Options.
Optimize Disk Space on Tiny Hard Drive
Sierra adds a hard drive optimization tool that makes it easy to see what is taking up space on your hard drive. Click the Apple logo> About This Mac> Storage> Details for detailed information on what’s on your hard drive and tips on how to free up space. This includes automatically deleting old iTunes movies, automatically erasing the trash after 30 days, deleting old documents, and more. It’s a handy and easy way to take a look at your storage and see what’s taking up space.
Extensive preview in posts makes it easy to preview links
Sierra Posts don’t have as many cool new features as iOS 10, but there is a new link preview mode. Now, when a friend sends you a link, you get a detailed preview of that link to help you decide if you really want to click on it. You also get a “tap” option in messages, which allows you to quickly reply to messages with your thumb up or down, a heart, and more. Just tap and hold on the pop-up message to bring up the option.
Each app gets tabs
macOS Sierra adds a handy new feature where you can optionally create a new tab using Command + T in almost every application. Developers don’t need to update their apps to support this feature, although it still only makes sense to use it in a few apps like TextEdit or Finder.
iTunes Reworked with Enhanced Apple Music
Apple Music is undergoing a minor redesign with updated For You and Overview pages. Both pages use larger, bold fonts and larger images for ease of use. Oddly enough, the rest of iTunes, including your library and iTunes store, looks and works the same as it did in El Capitan.
In Picture-in-Picture mode, the video is placed in the corner of the screen
Sierra adds a new Picture-in-Picture mode that works the same as on the iPad. When you view a web video in Safari (this currently only works in Safari), a small icon appears that lets you send the image to the corner of the screen. So far I’ve only managed to get this to work on Vimeo, but my guess is that it will eventually show up on other sites. When you are in PiP mode, you can move the window or resize it and it will always be on top of everything else.
Share notes in Apple Notes
If you’ve migrated from Evernote to Apple Notes , you’ll be glad to know that Apple Notes now supports collaboration. All you have to do is click on the share notes icon, enter the person you want to share the link with, and they will receive an invitation to edit. Once inside, they can make changes to the notes you share with them. It’s useless right now unless they’re also in Sierra or iOS 10 beta, but it’s nice to know how that would work anyway.