During the WWDC 2018 Keynote address Apple unveiled macOS Mojave, the latest version of their desktop operating system, which has new features including a new Dark Mode that will work with the built-in apps and third-party apps that choose to adopt it. There will be a new Stacks feature designed to organise messy desktops by automatically stacking files into neat groups. Familiar iOS apps, including News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home, will be available on the Mac for the first time. FaceTime now adds support for group calling, and the Mac App Store will have a full redesign featuring rich editorial content and the addition of apps from top developers, including Microsoft, Adobe and others.
Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering told us...
macOS Mojave is a major update that introduces powerful new features for a wide range of Mac users, from consumers to pros. Dark Mode brings a dramatic new look to macOS that puts your content front and center, familiar iOS apps come to the Mac for the first time and the redesigned Mac App Store makes finding new apps easier and more enjoyable than ever.
Dark Mode transforms the Mac desktop with a darkened colour scheme where content is designed to come to the front and controls recede into the background. macOS Mojave users can switch to Dark Mode in System Preferences enabling users to be able to toggle between a light and dark desktop, and built-in Mac apps like Mail, Messages, Maps, Calendar and Photos will all include Dark Mode designs. macOS Mojave will also feature a new Dynamic Desktop that automatically changes the desktop picture to match the time of day. Apple is making an API available so developers can implement Dark Mode in their apps. It will be interesting to see what Avid will do with this new mode with Pro Tools.
Desktop and Finder
Stacks for the desktop has been designed to help organise the most cluttered of desktops by automatically stacking files into neat groups based on file type. Users will be able to customise their Stacks to sort based on other file attributes like date and tags.
The Finder also gets an update in macOS Mojave with a new Gallery View that will let users skim through files visually. The Preview Pane will now shos all of a file’s metadata, making it easier to manage media assets.
Quick Actions will allow users to do things like creating and password-protecting PDFs and run custom Automator Actions on files right from within the Finder.
Quick Look will provide a fast, full-size preview of a file, allowing users to rotate and crop images, mark up PDFs and trim video and audio clips without even opening an app.
News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home
In macOS Mojave, iOS apps including News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home will now be available on Mac for the first time. In the News app, articles, photos and videos can be viewed on the Mac display and users can also follow their favourite publications from one app.
With Home, Mac users will be able to control their HomeKit-enabled accessories to do things like turn lights off and on or adjust thermostat settings without ever having to step away from their computer.
Voice Memos should make it easy to record personal notes, lectures, meetings, interviews and song ideas, and access them from iPhone, iPad or Mac.
Stocks will deliver curated market news alongside a personalized watchlist, complete with quotes and interactive charts to your macOS Desktop.
Group FaceTime is designed to make it easy to chat with multiple people at the same time. Participants can be added at any time, join later if the conversation is still active and choose to join using video or audio from an iPhone, iPad or Mac — or even participate using FaceTime audio from Apple Watch. This could be very useful when needing to approve or discuss progress on a session or project.
New Mac App Store
Since its launch in 2011, the Mac App Store has transformed the way users download and install software for the Mac, and today Apple states that it remains the single largest catalogue of Mac apps in the world.
In macOS Mojave, the Mac App Store will get a complete redesign with a new look and rich editorial content that makes it easy to find the right Mac app. The new design highlights new and updated apps in the Discover tab, while tabs for Create, Work, Play and Develop help users find apps for a specific project or purpose. A number of apps from top developers will also be coming soon to the Mac App Store, including Office from Microsoft, Lightroom CC from Adobe and more.
Privacy and Security
As with all Apple software updates, Apple tells us that enhanced privacy and security remain a top priority in macOS Mojave. In Safari, enhanced Intelligent Tracking Prevention will help block social media “Like” or “Share” buttons and comment widgets from tracking users without permission.
Safari will also present simplified system information when users browse the web, preventing them from being tracked based on their system configuration. Safari will also automatically create autofills and store strong passwords when users create new online accounts and will flag reused passwords so users can change them. New data protections now require apps to get user permission before using the Mac camera and microphone or accessing personal data like user Mail history and Messages database.
Sneak Peek Of Developer Framework For Mac Apps
The News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home apps are being brought to Mac using iOS frameworks that have been adapted to macOS. Starting in late 2019, these additional frameworks will make it easier for developers to bring other iOS apps to macOS.
Other New Features
Screenshots will deliver new on-screen controls for easy access to every screenshot option and new video recording capabilities. A streamlined workflow will enable easy screenshot sharing without cluttering the desktop.
Continuity Camera will allow Mac users to take a picture or scan a document nearby with their iPhone or iPad and have it appear instantly on their Mac.
Markup tools will be integrated into Finder, Quick Look and Screenshots, making it fast and efficient to add comments to content and share with others.
The developer preview of macOS Mojave is available to Apple Developer Program members at the Apple Developer site from today, and a public beta program will be available to Mac users in late June from Apple's beta site.
macOS Mojave is expected to be available this fall as a free software update for Macs introduced in mid-2012 or later, plus 2010 and 2012 Mac Pro models with recommended Metal-capable graphics cards. So those of us with Cheesegrater Mac Pros might be abe to get some more life out of the old dog yet.