Back at WWDC this summer, Apple teased one of the biggest updates to macOS since it moved to Unix with Mac OS X, and almost six months later, the update is finally upon us.
Announced today during Apple’s big MacBook event, Big Sur promises to be a major change for macOS users that brings the design of Apple’s desktop operating system more in line with the far more widely used iOS and iPadOS.
Laptops featuring Apple’s new M1 chip are guaranteed to come with Big Sur installed as the new OS is loaded with optimizations for the M1, including a new version of Rosetta that will let apps not optimized for the M1 run (hopefully) smoothly on M1 devices. Big Sur will also let M1 devices run iPadOS and iOS apps as well.
If you’ve already got an Apple computer you’ll be able to update to Big Sur on November 12 by downloading it, for free, from the App Store. If you’re a new Apple computer user (Tim Cook claims 50% of Apple computer purchases this year were new customers), then your computer will likely come with Big Sur pre-installed.
As with every massive update be cautious before you hit that update button as there are typically plenty of bugs in the first release that will get squashed soon after. Maybe spend today backing up your system just to be safe.