Apple’s MacOS Sierra Is Now Available For Download

Apple’s latest MacOS update is now live. It’s called Sierra and further integrates Apples Mobile Operating System, iOS with the desktop OS. It features fingerprint recognition and uses it for services like Apple Pay, there’s Siri integration and Auto Unlock as well. The OS features marginal improvements but great ones nonetheless that put it far ahead of any other OS right now. It seems Apple is totally ahead of the game these days with their iPhone “smoking” the Galaxy S series from Samsung and their desktop OS doing miles better than the buggy nightmare that is Microsoft Windows 10.

Apple Pay For The Web

Fingerprint identification on the Mac brings us to one of the most exciting glimpses of the future. A future without passwords. Google talked about how they would be phasing out passwords soon because they had become a burden and frankly, not all that secure. Apple is doing something similar by letting users use Touch ID to access their Apple Pay accounts on the Web. Around 300,000 websites will allow payments through this method. No credit card numbers will be shared with merchants so essentially it’s Apple dealing with them on your behalf.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 13: Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering, introduces the new macOS Sierra software at an Apple event at the Worldwide Developer's Conference on June 13, 2016 in San Francisco, California. Thousands of people have shown up to hear about Apple's latest updates. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JUNE 13: Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, introduces the new macOS Sierra software at an Apple event at the Worldwide Developer’s Conference on June 13, 2016 in San Francisco, California. Thousands of people have shown up to hear about Apple’s latest updates. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Siri Integration

This is one of the big features people had been waiting for. Ever since Siri arrived on the iPhone 4S, there were rumours that it would be coming to the Mac. It’s finally here to compete with the likes of Cortana and Google Now. Though Siri is perhaps not as smart as the latter it is definitely going to be more popular in the desktop space than the former. Siri has been improving each year with Apple pouring funds in to make it smarter. Even though I particularly don’t care for voice recognition (I didn’t use it on iOS when I had an iPod Touch 2 years ago and I don’t use Google Now on my Android phone now), it’s a nice addition to Sierra. You can use Siri to send emails and messages, search for files and photos, change system settings and more.

Memories in Photos

Apple’s Photos app will now use machine learning to recognize faces and events in photos to group them in to collections. This will allow for photographs of different events to be automatically labeled “birthdays” or “bachelor party” or “barmitzvah”.

Other Improvements

There’s Universal Clipboard that allows copy and paste from any Apple device to any Apple device. iCloud desktop and Documents allows users to see their documents in their mobile devices on their Mac. Auto Unlock allows users to unlock their Mac if they have an authenticated Apple Watch. Why Apple didn’t do this with their iPhone too is a mystery.

Tabs are now enabled for first party apps like Maps, Mail, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, and TextEdit. Third party apps with the functionality exist but aren’t very common. My favourite feature, Optimized Storage, will save infrequently used files in the Cloud and allow for greater conservation of space on your hard drive.