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Apple macOS Monterey: New features, details, device support

In a virtual presentation at the WWDC 2021 conference today, Apple executives outlined the company’s plans for macOS Monterey, the latest major edition of the Mac family of software.

The new name follows the naming scheme based on Apple in California for the latest versions of macOS, dating back to the launch of OS X Mavericks in 2013.

As for what’s included in the update, macOS Monterey introduces a new feature called “Universal Control”

; that allows users to share control of Mac and iPad devices with a single mouse and keyboard. Software engineering Craig Federi’s Apple SVP demonstrates the ability to simply set the iPad close to the Mac, move the latter’s cursor to the first, and the iPad automatically recognizes it. This makes it possible to drag and drop files directly between devices, for example. Apple demonstrates this feature, working together on iMac, MacBook and iPad.

In addition, macOS Monterey will make AirPlay video, audio, documents and other items from iPad or iPhone directly to Mac. The update also provides a quick access feature, first seen on the iPhone and iPad, that allows users to access automated tasks and workflows on the Mac.

Safari will also get something like a makeover with Monterey, bringing a thinner and visually cleaner toolbar and more compact tabs. Active tab bars will now contain the traditional URL and search bar, and tabs can now be grouped and accessed through the Safari sidebar. These tab groups can then be accessed and updated via Mac, iPhone and iPad.

Apple says the following devices will be compatible with macOS Monterey:

  • In early 2015 and later MacBook Air
  • In early 2015 and later the MacBook Pro
  • In early 2016 and later MacBook
  • In late 2015 and later the iMac
  • In late 2014 and later Mac mini
  • 2017 and later iMac Pro
  • In late 2013 and later Mac Pro

MacOS Monterey will arrive as a developer beta today and a public beta in July, with the full version coming in the fall.

This story is evolving. Follow along with our live blog on WWDC 2021 for real-time updates.

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