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What’s New on the MacOS Sierra? 8 Essential Updates You Need to Know

macos sierra

As a Mac user, you may have noticed how Apple introduces a new version of OS X annually. This year, you probably know that the new version came with new features and, more importantly, a new name. With MacOS Sierra, you’ll find interesting new upgrades integrated within a familiar user experience. Although there are but a handful of surprises that came with MacOS Sierra, we’re sure anyone will welcome most, if not all, of these timely OS changes:

The 8 Most Important New Features in MacOS Sierra

1) A universal clipboard

In Sierra, you can copy any text on your Mac and be able to paste it into your iPhone/iPad or vice versa. This universal clipboard function joins a growing list of features (e.g. Instant Hotspot, Messages, Handoff, Auto Unlock, etc.) that seamlessly connect your Mac to any of your iOS devices.

Typically, the Universal Clipboard works with photos, text, and videos. Here are the steps to set it up correctly:

  1. Sign into iCloud on all your devices with one Apple ID.
  2. Turn on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi on all your devices.
  3. Make sure to keep every device you’re transferring copied content to near as Universal Clipboard depends on proximity in order to work.
  4. Now you can copy a photo, text, or video on one device and then paste the material immediately on your other mobile device.

2) Finder has become better organized

Aside from providing an option that will empty items in the trash after a month, Sierra also introduces an option to display folders first when Finder lists all files and folders alphabetically. It’s interesting to note that Windows has had this feature for years, so it’s about time we get to enjoy the same on the Mac.

3) Memories

Using facial recognition and other smart technology, Memories will be able to tell who’s who in all of your pictures and organize them accordingly. You can then combine related pictures to create Ken Burns-style movies from your photo albums. You can even add a soundtrack, too. That’s photo-curating made easy! 

4) Siri on Mac

While the speech-driven assistant won’t readily respond to your command like it does on the iPhone/iPad, you can activate Siri on your Mac with a mouse click or a keystroke (Fn + space). From there, you can ask her to tell you about the weather or give you updates on the latest scores or even search for local restaurants.

Once Siri’s answer pops up, you can drag her output or the images she has retrieved from the pop-up window to the notification pane or documents. You can also set it so Siri will talk back to you or type out her replies on the screen.

5) Picture in Picture feature

In Sierra, you can now extract a video from a website and have it play on your desktop without the surrounding web page. You can watch videos while you’re doing other tasks on your Mac as the video will stay on top of your workspace and continue playing even as you switch among apps.

So far, the Picture in Picture (PiP) on MacOS Sierra is available in two applications: iTunes and Safari. In addition, HTML5 videos (e.g. videos on Apple’s website, Vimeo, etc.) works well with PiP straightaway but, other video players (e.g. videos on Twitter, Facebook, etc.) will still need additional code to enable the feature.

To turn on PiP in Safari videos, simply look and click the PiP button (it looks like 2 rectangles with a diagonal arrow between the two). The content should pop out right out and move to a particular corner of the screen.

6) Integrated iCloud drive

With MacOS Sierra, every file and subfolder in your Desktop and Documents folder will be uploaded to your iCloud drive automatically. Don’t worry, you can turn this feature off if you choose. This iCloud integration gives you instant access to your most crucial files on any Apple device or even Windows computers that have the iCloud app installed.

In addition, Sierra will ask you which files you might want to remove from your Mac so they may be stored completely in the cloud. Although keep in mind that you have to be conscientious about what files to upload since you only get 5GB worth of free storage in iCloud. 

7) Tabs for everything

Any app that normally opens separate windows are now capable of using multiple tabs instead. So far, we’re seeing tabs on Maps, Mail, and more apps, regardless if Apple made them or not. It’s perfect for easier navigation and reduced clutter.

8) Apple Watch synchrony

If you bring an unlocked Apple Watch that you’re wearing close to your locked Mac, it’ll automatically unlock. Just another step Apple is taking toward improving integration among Apple devices.

MacOS Sierra is a free upgrade that every Mac user should install. It’s a solid and dependable operating system that clearly works well alongside iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches. With the arrival of Siri, an improved iCloud synchrony, and the introduction of the tabs functionality on Mac, using MacOS just got even better.

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