10 Features You Need to Try on Big Sur

Big Sur is the latest macOS available on Apple computers. Whether you have already upgraded to it or are still considering switching to Big Sur, this version of the Mac operating system has tons of new features to try out.

Big-Sur-Mac-Image

Let’s dive in

The 10 Features on macOS Big Sur:

1. New menu bar

If you’re still using macOS Catalina and wondering what’s new in macOS big sur, you are in for a surprise. The old menu bar is gone and has been replaced with an updated menu bar.

It is “taller,” and you can see through the menu bar, unlike the previous version where it was solid. Your desktop background can now be seen from ‘edge to edge.’

The other update to the menu bar is the fact that the word on it can become dark or light depending on the background. It is also easier to read the ‘pull-down menus’ since they have been bigger and increased line spacing.

2. Updated Dock

Dock has also had a similar upgrade. It is translucent like the menu bar, so your wallpaper is really ‘edge to edge’. The app icons have also gotten a facelift and are easily recognizable, saving you time when you need to switch between them quickly.

3. New system sounds

The sounds have also gotten a revamp while keeping the old sound in mind. They are more pleasing to the ear, which adds to the user experience.

4. New symbols

Another win for user experience is the advent of new symbols across apps that make the UX consistent. For instance, if you can view your Calendar through two different apps -- the symbol for the Calendar is now the same across both apps.

5. All new Control Center

You don’t need to go digging into System Preferences to get things done. The new Control Center has all your menu bar options in one tidy corner. It mimics the Control Center that already exists on iPhones and iPads.

big-sur-control-center-644x445

You can also customize the control center to add apps and settings.

6. Revamped Notification Center

The Notification Center has been designed to have all your notifications in one column now. It is organized by the most recent ones, and they are interactive. Clicking on a notification does not have to take you to the app. You can reply to an email right from the notification center or listen to the new music album from your favorite musician.

The grouping of notifications is done either by context or app, but you can disable this if you prefer to see notifications on their own.

7. Redesigned widgets

The widgets have also gotten a facelift. The design has been revamped to improve the user interface and experience, and you can choose the size of the widget instead of having a default size.

You can also add new widgets to the Notification Center and modify what kind of information you want to see. Apart from the in-house apps, you can also find third-party widgets that you may find useful.

8. Custom Start Page

A feature that has been available on other browsers for a while, the Start Page was a bit dull on Safari, but with Big Sur, that has changed. You can customize it to add a background image and add sections that you would like to see when you open Safari and rearrange them.

Custom-start-page

9. Improved Safari

Safari is the best browser for Mac in terms of speed, but with Big Sur, this speed has become even better. Compared to Safari, Chrome loads sites 50% slower on average.

It is also easy on your battery. You can stream videos for 1.5 hours longer or surf the web for an hour more than other browsers like Firefox or Chrome.

You also see Favicons in tabs to easily tell tabs apart, and you view more tabs at once. In fact, you can also see what a website contains without loading it. If you hold the cursor over a tab, you can see a preview of what it has in store.

Safari also can translate pages that are in beta mode currently. Finally, the extensions on the browser have also gotten an update. All of the extensions are reviewed by Apple, so you can download them without risking malware on your laptop.

10. Improved Messages

You can now pin conversations that you like at the top and multiple conversations at that. Searching for something in your messages is also easier now. You can find links, images, or keywords quickly.

Group conversations also have gotten an upgrade. You can @ someone in a conversation to tag them and get notified when you have been tagged. 

All in all

The Big Sur update has made some major improvements to the Apple experience. Some new features have been introduced, while old features have been enhanced to provide a consistent and quality user experience.

Stefan Richard is one of the folks who can't have a life without technology, especially Microsoft products. He has more than 12+ experience in Information technology. He worked as IT trainer, network/system administrator and IT Infrastructure manager. Stefan is the co-founder of HecticGeek.

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