macOS 11 Big Sur launches November 12th alongside new Apple Silicon Macs
Today, Apple hosted its third presentation in the past two months, with this one focusing on Mac hardware and software.
The major announcement was that future Mac computers will be powered by Apple Silicon, chips designed by Apple instead of Intel. In addition to more security and a smaller profile, Apple Silicon for Mac will be entirely built into one system on a chip design as opposed to discrete CPUs and GPUs. The first Apple Silicon for Mac is called the M1 Chip, with major increases in power efficiency, computational speed, and machine learning capability.
The first Mac computers with M1 are the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro alongside the Mac mini desktop. In order to ensure a smooth transition from Intel-powered computers to Apple M1-powered ones, Apple will release Rosetta 2 in order to ensure apps not designed natively for Apple Silicon to run on Intel Mac models and vice versa. Apple claims that some Intel apps running on M1-powered computers via Rosetta 2 perform better than they did on previous Intel-powered integrated models.
In addition to Rosetta 2, Apple M1 Macs will also be able to run iPhone and iPad apps directly via macOS with support for macOS's menu bar and window sizes, as well as mouse and trackpad hardware support. These apps will be downloadable via the purchased app list on the Mac App Store.
Apple closed the presentation by announcing when these upcoming Macs will be released, as well as the latest version of macOS, named Big Sur. Big Sur will be available Thursday, November 12th, and these Mac models will be made available on Tuesday, November 17th.