Apple announced its latest macOS also known as Big Sur at WWDC 2020. It has received a major feature-upgrade and design overhaul which means even bigger things for the final release. I’ve been using it since day one and I have found a few features, tips, and tricks that you’d love it. Let’s check it out.
As the final version isn’t released yet, this list won’t be complete but as I discover new features and Apple rolls them out in future updates, I’d be updating this article.
Best macOS Big Sur Features
1. Customizable Control Center
Being a part of iOS and iPadOS for years, Control Center has finally made its way to macOS and it brings a sense of continuity across the entire ecosystem. Using it is just as simple, click the Control Center icon on the top right and there you have access to all the quick action buttons such as Brightness, Sound, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, etc. You can customize the icons and bring them to the Menubar for even quicker access.
Just like iOS 14, Widgets are available for macOS Big Sur and are quite similar to the mobile counterpart. The widgets follow the same small, medium, and large size profile that you can adjust in the edit window. However, my only complaint about the Widgets is that those are present in the Notification panel and there isn’t a way to keep them floating over other windows.
3. Interactive Notifications
Notifications are a big part of the macOS and it’s getting an upgrade. You would be able to interact with the notifications and take action just by clicking and holding the notification. For instance, if you get a Calendar notification about an upcoming event, you could just click and hold to open a preview of the even in your calendar. Neat.
4. Battery Usage History
The Battery monitor on the iPhone is a really insightful tool that lets you analyze the behavior of apps that use the most juice on the device. Now, you’d be able to track the Battery usage on your MacBooks running macOS Big Sur as well. It would tell you stats about the last charge status, apps consuming most battery, trends, etc.
5. Automatic Device Switching with AirPods
AirPods were never truly seamless if you include macOS and that is all going to change with the latest OS updates. iOS 14, iPadOS 14, and macOS Big Sur would bring true seamlessness to AirPods and you won’t have to manually disconnect and connect the AirPods to your computer anymore. For instance, you’re watching a movie on iPad and a call comes, your AirPods would automatically route to the device you receive the call on.
6. Hover to Preview On Safari
The Safari web browser is getting an update as well and now the webpages would load faster, you would be able to customize the homepage, and even import your passwords from Chrome. Web previews would let you see a quick snippet of the webpage without changing tabs. Simply hover the cursor over a tab and view a preview, it’s pretty convenient.
7. Add Photos to Notes with iPhone/iPad
macOS Big Sur makes adding images to your notes easier than ever. Simply click the Photos button on the Notes app and select Take Photo. It would open the Camera of your nearby iPhone or iPad and upload the photo directly to the note.
8. Live Updates for Shared ETA
While this feature is available for iPhones as well but I like the fact that they offered it here. Now, whenever your friends or family share their ETA through Apple Maps, you’d be able to get live updates of their location. It makes it so much easier to estimate when they would be arriving or are they stuck in traffic.
These were some of the best features, tips, and tricks that you should know about the latest macOS Big Sur. As new features get released, I’d add and update the items on the list. Right now, my favorite features of macOS Big Sur are the Control Center and Safari updates but what about you? What’s your favorite feature of Big Sur? Let me know in the comments below.