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Huge changes coming to your Mac

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The HP Spectre and Apple MacBook are thin enough to slice cheese, but what do you give up for extreme sleekness? WSJ’s Joanna Stern weighs the port, performance and battery life trade-offs. Photo: Matt McDonald/The Wall Street Journal.

Your mac will soon offer a new user experience.


THE operating system of your mac has officially been killed to make way for a new OS, codenamed Sierra.

While not being rolled out to customers until later this year, the new version of macOS will be a free update and will offer a whole new user experience.

After seeing the success Microsoft had with Cortana — the personal assistant for Windows 10 — Apple has decided to come to the party by adding Siri as a new feature.

The promising update will bring the handy features of Siri on iOS to your Mac, along with new capabilities designed just for the desktop.

Apple claims Siri on Mac is all about multi-tasking and making everyday tasks on your desktop much easier.

The desktop-specific tasks include getting Siri to complete an action while you finish a different task or asking her to locate files hidden deep inside your computer.

Some of the other commands Siri can perform include: “Show the PDFs in my Downloads folder”, “Add Laura to my 10 AM meeting” or “How much free space do I have on my Mac?”.

Even more impressive is the fact you will be able to keep Siri results for easy access.

“Pin sports schedules, Twitter feeds, a list of files related to your big project, and more, right in Notification Center. Everything stays up to date — so you always know where to find game times, trending topics, or important documents,” Apple wrote.

Additionly, Siri will enable a new “Search. Drag. Drop” feature.

“Search for images and information just by asking. Then drag results right to a window on your desktop. Drop an image from the web into a Pages document,” Apple wrote.

It’s as easy as pulling search results out of this box and into a document or email.

It’s as easy as pulling search results out of this box and into a document or email.Source:Supplied

PHOTOS

The next biggest update to macOS is “Photos”, which comes equipped with a built in artificial intelligence system that offers better facial recognition and automatically groups pictures into albums and slide shows called “Memories”.

Not only will the new update allow for your images to be made into slide shows and shareable collections, but it will have an increased search function.

“Advanced computer vision technology can identify objects and scenes within your images. So you can search your photos by what’s in them. Find all your shots of the beach, every sunset you’ve captured, or every image with a birthday cake,” Apple wrote.

Despite sounding eerily familiar to Google Photos — which launched last year — the feature will offer a higher level of privacy.

This comes from everything being contained locally on your mac, opposed to storing everything on the cloud like Google Photos does.

PICTURE IN PICTURE

This feature is a game changer with Apple introducing the ability watch a video, while performing another task on your Mac.

“Now you can float a video window from Safari or iTunes over your desktop or a full-screen app,” Apple wrote.

“Play the video in any corner of the desktop and resize it to see more or less of what’s behind it.”

At the time of writing this article, ESPN and Vimeo are the only sites supporting this feature, but it’s hard to believe more websites won’t come on-board when the OS is made public.

You can now work on a document, while streaming the game.

You can now work on a document, while streaming the game.Source:Supplied

THE REST OF THE CHANGES

Siri, Photos and Picture in Picture might be the biggest additions to the update, but they are not all that’s included.

An all-new Apple Music experience will make finding songs even simpler with a freshly redesigned platform inside iTunes.

A revamped iMessage feature will allow for even bigger emojis and will play videos and preview links right in the conversation.

Another exciting feature is the ability to have your Desktop and Documents folder available on all your devices — the folders will automatically be stored and updated in iCloud Drive.

Universal Clipboard will also make it easier to share information between your Apple products by allowing for copying images from one deceive and pasting to another.

Auto Unlock with Apple Watch will allow you to gain instant access to your Mac by logging in before you even sit down.

The final addition is the ability to use Apple Pay, while shopping online in Safari.

“Look for Apple Pay on many of your favourite shopping sites, then complete your purchase with Touch ID on your iPhone or by double-clicking the side button on your Apple Watch,” Apple wrote.

“Your credit card details are never shared when you use Apple Pay, and your transactions are protected with industry-leading security.”