Big Sur is the coastal region of California located just over 200 kilometres south of the city of San Francisco, which stands out for being a coastline from which the Santa Lucia Mountains emerge abruptly, for its rich landscape and for how sparsely populated it is, one of the greatest tourist attractions in terms of natural landscapes that this region of the western United States has to offer. And it is this iconic location that has been chosen to name macOS version 11, the successor to macOS Catalyst.
Designed to get the most out of ARM processors
macOS Big Sur was officially announced in June 2020 and released to the public in November 2020. Its development has taken into account the ARM architecture of the processors that now equips Apple computers.
This new version of macOS continues to preserve the essence that characterises Apple's computer operating system, but introduces different changes and improvements with respect to its previous version that affect different areas, both in terms of external appearance and internal functioning. These are the main changes offered by Big Sur:
- Design: a new design has been implemented for the apps that focuses the user's attention on the content and facilitates work through toolbars. The menu bar has been optimised by increasing the space between elements and system sounds have been renewed.
- Control Centre: Favourite menus and controls are now more accessible to change settings more quickly. Menus are expanded to show more controls and favourites can be pinned to the menu bar.
- Notification centre: The notification centre interface has been redesigned to display notifications alongside widgets. Interactive notifications offer more information and more actions to perform, and widgets and size can be customised.
- Safari: The browser has improved speed and optimised power consumption. New features such as a new customisable homepage, better support for extensions and improved security for password management are also added.
- Messages: better access to favourite conversations and incorporation of functions such as mentions, effects in chats or individual replies to messages addressed to you.
- Maps: The maps app offers recommendations for the best places to visit, 3D city views, indoor maps of airports and shopping centres, routes for cyclists and navigation for electric vehicles, with a special focus on charging points.
- AirTag: improved compatibility with AirTag for secure and private location and control in the Find app.
- iPhone and iPad apps: compatibility with the iPhone and iPad control systems is improved, as well as the way in which their applications are displayed on the screen.
Big Sur is a performance and quality leap for Macs equipped with the M1, the ARM architecture chips that are implemented in computers launched in 2020 such as MacBook air, MacBook Pro and Mac mini.