The macOS 10.12 beta is now available for public download. We’ve already previewed the new features using the developer beta, and our first impressions were very positive. Mac users will love the changes.
The most noticeable difference will likely be the addition of Siri, which lets you speak directly to the virtual assistant from your desktop and ask questions like, “Siri, what’s the weather?” or run commands like “Siri, lower the brightness of my screen.” The update also does a great job of giving users options for configuring Siri. You can place the assistant in the dock, in the top menu bar, or just use a keyboard shortcut (Fn + Space) to get started. From there, Siri can run through all of the normal commands from your phone. The AI-powered assistant also works as a great Spotlight replacement.
Another one of the other major changes you’ll notice is in iCloud. Now, the cloud storage service automatically downloads and syncs everything from your Desktop and Documents folders. You can enable or disable this feature at set up, so if you’re keen on keeping your files off the cloud, you can.
There are a couple other little flourishes you’ll notice, like a picture-in-picture shortcut that makes it easy to snap a video into the corner of your monitor. We’re also eager to try the new universal clipboard, easy to copy and paste content across devices (such as an iPhone to a Macbook).
But beware: this is still beta software, so we wouldn’t advise installing it on your primary device. The system is still filled with unresolved bugs, and that could lead to permanent damage to your device or files. If you have a spare Mac laying around, however, you can download the new macOS right here.