Earlier this month at WWDC, Apple unveiled macOS High Sierra. The poorly named update is meant to improve upon macOS Sierra, through a number of behind the scene changes and updates. Today, we are taking a look at five changes that’ll make your Mac better by upgrading.
Apple File System
The most major change in High Sierra is the Apple File System (AFS). This file system, which was actually introduced at last year’s WWDC, is a completely new foundation for your hard drive. In iOS 10.3 earlier this year, Apple updated all iOS devices to the system, and now they are doing it with the Mac.
AFS includes a number of changes that will greatly improve your Mac. First off, AFS runs on a 64-bit architecture and is much more secure than previous file systems. But the most fundamental difference with AFS is the way it handles files.
On your Mac today, your files are treated as separate entities, and placed in locations you’ve created. So, if you download a file from the internet to your downloads and want to move it to your desktop, it will need time to transfer that file to your desktop.
On AFS, the files and the file system are considered separate, so your file explorer becomes equivalent to link to the files. So, when you click on a file in downloads, it will know to pul that file from the directory. However, if you were to move that file or make a copy, it would do it instantly, because it is just creating a new link, not actually duplicating or moving the file.
Videos on macOS High Sierra will now run on the HEVC standard, which is optimized for 4K video. This allows for up to 40% improved video compression, and means videos load smoother and quicker on High Sierra.
Photos received a powerful set of updates in High Sierra.
First off, the design has been tweaked to feature a persistent sidebar for optimal organization.
Second, Photos now features a wider set of editing tools and is compatible with other photo editing programs like Photoshop or Pixelmator, and automatically keeps track of edit between apps.
Lastly, Photos has a new set of organization features with improved human recognition and criteria.
Safari has received a major set of updates in High Sierra. The most major of which is speed, which has significantly improved. The browser is now on par or better than Chrome.
Another new feature is Intelligent Tracking Prevention. This feature stops cookies from tacking your activity across the web in certain instances. Meaning if you buy an item, you won’t see ads about that item on every site the next week.
Apple has also introduced a feature that stops auto-playing videos on web articles.
macOS High Sierra, also features a number of little tweaks to improve the experience, here’s just a few:
- Siri now has expanded music capabilities, and features a new voice.
- Spotlight can now give you detailed flight info
- You can now search Top Hits in Mail
- iCloud iMessages and expanded storage options
macOS High Sierra launches this fall for all devices that supported Sierra, and a public beta available in July.