What’s New in Apple macOS Catalina Update

Bhupinder Kour March 28, 2024
What’s New in Apple macOS Catalina Update

Since the day it was announced at WWDC 2019, macOS Catalina was the second hottest topic of discussion, after iOS 13. 

The new OS for desktop and laptops proposed various ‘most awaited’ features and functionalities and brought a wave of excitement among Apple users and developers. Something that reached to the next level when the macOS Catalina, which was in Beta 10 version, was released publicly this Monday.

macOS Catalina, the 16th major update of macOS software, brought radical changes in terms of Apple’s subscription services and empowered all to employ their iPads as an extended art of Mac. 

But, that’s not the only significant thing about this update. It comes up with a slew of features, apps, and improvements, which we will cover here.

1. Absence of iTunes

As already declared at WWDC 2019, iTunes is no longer a part of Apple environment. It is replaced by three applications: Apple Music, Apple TV, and Apple Podcasts. All these three apps, as depicted from their names, will focus on niche domains and deliver enhanced user experience.

Also, the TV application will host the Apple TV+ service which is expected to be released on November 1.

However, this does not mean that your earlier purchase and data will be removed. You will still be able to make iTune Store purchases and retrieve your music library, access movies and TV shows you purchases, and listen to podcasts you love.

2. Sync Devices via Finder

Earlier, iTunes was used for syncing iPhone and iPads with Mac and taking a backup. But now, with iTunes no more a part of the Apple world, Finder will take this job.

The Finder app, which is available on the left side of the Finder window with nearly the same UI, will enable iOS app developers and users to sync and take backup of their devices.

3. Enhanced Security

macOS 10.15 Catalina, the successor of macOS 10.14 Mojave, is also coming loaded with new weapons to fightback data breaches and hacking activities. 

In this new software update, applications are restricted to access files, take screengrabs, or keep an eye on keyboard activities without seeking users’ permission. Gatekeeper is upgraded to analyze all the applications in terms of security before their installation. 

Besides, the macOS update now supports Activation Locks. Meaning, only users can erase and reactivate their Mac. Also, users are able to use their Apple Watch to authenticate transactions, unlock locked notes, confirm app installations, and access passwords merely by a double-click on the side button. 

What’s more, Macs can send Bluetooth signal about being picked up by other Apple devices even in offline or sleep mode.

4. Screen Time

Screen time, which was one of the prime features of iOS 12 update, is also coming in macOS Catalina. 

This feature will let users get a detailed insight on how much time they are spending on any application or website. And eventually, set App Limits and Downtime to lower down the addiction.

5. SideCar

SideCar feature of macOS Catalina enables users to use iPads as extended workspace. Meaning, users can now use iPad display for drawing, sketching, or writing something both in the case of wired and wireless connections. And this way, enhance the productivity level.

6. Find My

The new macOS update has also merged ‘Find My Mac’ and ‘Find My Friends’ apps into a single app called ‘Find My’. 

This application lets users find their Mac even when it is closed or has no WiFi connection via iPhones and other Apple devices. Also, it enables them to find a lost or stolen devices with more ease and features.

7. Apple Arcade

Another feature that will give a refreshing look to Mac environment is Apple Arcade.

The Apple’s gaming subscription will enable users to enjoy games on their Mac, alongside support for wireless game controllers like Xbox Wireless Controllers via Bluetooth.

8. No More 32-bit Apps

macOS Catalina would no longer support 32-bit applications. Meaning, it has become imperative for iOS app developers to upgrade their older apps as per 64-bit configurations.

9. iPhone Apps for Mac

Last but not least, this Mac OS version has also come up with a new feature called Project Catalyst. This feature enables iOS app developers to port their iPad apps on the Mac easily. 

While some of the options like GoodNotes 5, HabitMinder, and Carrot Weather are already available, many more Catalyst apps and tools are expected to roll out sooner. And this way, make the custom iPhone application development environment simple and effective.

While these are some of the major macOS Catalina features, the software update is also coming loaded with various minor changes like availability of voice control option, revamped reminder app, and more.

Bhupinder Kour
Content Writer
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