Thursday, April 18, 2024

macOS Big Sur Review: A combination of new and familiar


Message and map

If you’re using both iPhone and Mac, Messages is probably one of the most important apps you’re using on both devices. Fortunately, with Big Sur, the message experience is about the same across platforms. iOS 14 brings a number of new features, including inline replies, the ability to pin conversations, @mentions and custom images for group chats, and improved search capabilities. These are all in Big Sur. Apple has also added some features to the Mac that have existed for years in iOS messages, such as built-in GIF search, Memoji stickers, and “message effects” (such as sending messages with confetti and fireworks clouds). Brought. So when a friend sends a message from a cell phone using a laser effect, the boring text description “sent by laser” disappears from the Mac. That’s a trivial matter.

The Maps app has also received some major updates and is now consistent with what you see on iOS. Google Maps followers wouldn’t mind these changes, but Apple Maps on the iPhone is actually very good these days (at least in the US). But like the message, maps on the Mac lacked many of the features Apple has added to iOS apps over the years. Now they are perfectly symmetrical. The biggest advantage is that the “guide” (basically a list of saved locations) created on your mobile phone is also available on your Mac. The reverse is also true. Previously, maps could only add locations to a single “favorite” list, but it’s much more natural to have multiple lists. That way, you can save the places you want to visit during your vacation (when you are allowed to travel again, Hah) For example, apart from your favorite local spot.

All of these lists are stored in a new sidebar, including your favorite spots such as home and work addresses and recent searches. Clicking on the search field at the top of the sidebar also brings up a new map feature, the Guide. These are a selection of third parties from local spots, including restaurants to try out and the best photo spots. You can save what you want to come back. Guides range from trusted sources such as Lonely Planet and The Washington Post to smaller and more specific options such as Fotospot and All Trails. We don’t have many guides yet, but you should be able to find one in most big cities. There are guides from about 20 publishers and hopefully it will continue to grow over time.


Finally, Apple’s “look around” feature (basically the answer to Google Street View) was first introduced on the Mac. Currently only available in “some cities”, but given the pace Apple has recently improved on the map, we hope this will be more widespread in the near future. As is often the case with Apple Maps, the company lags behind Google in many areas, so Google Maps followers won’t switch. But lately, I’m using this app more and more because I prefer to use Apple Maps for turn-by-turn navigation. If Apple wants to convert more users to the platform, it’s important to have the same experience on the Mac.

Odds and end

These are the biggest updates, but Apple has done nip and tack in many other apps. One of the most important, sadly, is one I haven’t tried yet. A privacy label that has been added to all apps on the App Store. It hasn’t been published yet, but once it’s published, you’ll see tracking data that your app can collect, personal information that is linked to your users, and data that’s been collected but not linked to your ID. Unlike Safari’s privacy report, these cards in the App Store are of the type that you can see before you install the software, so you can better understand how developers handle your personal information. .. Given how difficult it is to track, this is definitely a wise move. (These cards will be coming to iOS soon.)

macOS Big Sur-App Store Privacy


Other changes include a new video and photo editing tool in the photo app, a redesigned “Listen Now” experience in Apple Music, the ability to assign reminders to other family members, improved search in Notes, and other comparisons. Includes minor updates. .. Most of these are features Apple added to iOS 14, so it’s not surprising that they will appear on your Mac. Thanks to the fact that in the last few years of software updates, Apple has focused on synchronizing core app feature sets across platforms.

Another change you may have noticed with the iPhone currently on your Mac is optimized battery charging. According to Apple, you’ll learn how to use your computer and optimize charging to prevent battery drain. In practice, this means that the OS keeps the battery charge at 80% when the computer is connected “for a long time” (such as at night). Then make sure the battery is full, usually when unplugging. I’m still not sure if this affected my battery, but the charging pattern on the Mac is less consistent than the phone that hits the charger every night. On my laptop, sometimes I’m connected all day and the other day I’m walking around the house with only a short charging break. However, I haven’t had the problem that my Mac isn’t fully charged when I need it, so I’ll leave the setting on for now.

Ebenezer Robbins
Ebenezer Robbins
Introvert. Beer guru. Communicator. Travel fanatic. Web advocate. Certified alcohol geek. Tv buff. Subtly charming internet aficionado.

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