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macOS Big Sur launches November 12: Here's everything you need to know

macOS Big Sur Launched
(Image credit: Apple)

The latest version of macOS, Big Sur, is launching on November 12. It boasts a completely new design that is being lauded as the most substantial in years. It's also set to redefine how certain aspects of the operating system function.

Big Sur is also working in synergy with Apple's latest M1 chip to provide improved performance, battery life and convenience for developers.

The dock has been streamlined, giving every app on it a uniform curved square aesthetic that makes for a far more satisfying experience. Big Sur also features a new control center, which allows you to access settings for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, AirDrop, Keyboard Brightness, Display Brightness and Volume Control.

Users can also expect a new notification center, which boasts a new design that combines both notifications and widgets into one, sleek menu. Additionally, this new notifications center is interactive, allowing the user to start a podcast or expand details on a Calendar.

Safari is also receiving a substantial update, both design wise and practically. Not only will it enhance battery life and performance speeds, but there are now additional features to protect the users privacy. Additionally, the browser will have an updated look for tabs, allowing for a more "space efficient design." Safari can now have custom images uploaded to the starting page of the browser and the quick-use widgets can be swapped around freely.

The Apple Store will also feature a new section for Safari extensions and will make it easier for developers to work these extensions into the browser. Safari will also allow you to translate between seven languages instantly and now tracks whether a saved password has been breached and assists you in changing it. Privacy Report is also a new feature that will inform the user about what types of trackers Safari has been blocking.

With the new Messages app, users can now pin messages, reply specifically to other peoples messages, set a group photo and automatically highlight a user being mentioned in a sentence. You can also now quickly share gifs using an internal gif searcher and create message effects.

And finally, Big Sur will inform the user of how much access an app they're about to download has on the users privacy and data.