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macOS Sonoma RC now available to developers as official version launches late this month

Published Sep 12th, 2023 2:57PM EDT
macOS Sonoma Apple Silicon

While we first thought macOS Sonoma could launch alongside iOS 17, Apple has announced it will launch on September 26, as the company has released its RC version after the iPhone 15 event.

This update has a few features exclusive to Apple Silicon Macs, as Apple will stop supporting Intel models. Here’s what you need to know.

macOS Sonoma focuses on videoconferencing functionsPresenter Overlay keeps you part of the conversation when sharing your screen on a video call. You can choose between two overlays, large and small. While the large overlay keeps the spotlighting you, with your screen framed next to you on a separate layer, the small option puts you on a small bubble floating on the presentation.

There’s even a new screen-sharing picker that lets you share an app or even multiple apps when on a video call, and with your Studio Display or iPhone as a camera, you can adjust the frame with zoom and pan controls or use Recenter to automatically place yourself in the center of the frame in a call.

macOS Sonoma beta adds Game Mode, which automatically gives games top priority on the CPU and GPU of your Mac, lowering usage for background tasks while dramatically reducing latency with wireless accessories.

In addition, this new operating system brings new slow-motion screen savers of “breathtaking” locations from around the world. When you log in, they seamlessly become your desktop wallpaper. In addition, you can finally place widgets on your desktop from your widget gallery. With beta 6, Apple made a Sonoma screen saver as a wallpaper, and with beta 7, it added all Apple TV screen savers available.

14-inch MacBook Pro (2021) running macOS SonomaImage source: José Adorno for BGR

macOS Sonoma has interactive widgets on its desktop, and with Continuity, you can add your iPhone widgets to your desktop without having to install the corresponding apps on your Mac. In addition, when you open an app or window or use Stage Manager, widgets fade into the background so you can concentrate on the task.

For Safari, you can create a profile to keep your browsing, history, extensions, Tab Groups, cookies, and favorites separated for topics like Work and Personal.

Apple says Search in Safari with macOS Sonoma is also more responsive and shows easier-to-read and more relevant suggestions. Another feature is web apps that come to your dock. You can launch a web app to get an app-like experience with a simplified toolbar.

BGR will update this article when we learn more about the new features. A new public beta build is expected soon.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.

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