The new Mavericks OS X upgrade released last week may not “feel” very different from the previous OS but it packs some great new streamlined features to enhance even the casual user’s Mac experience. According to Apple this upgrade contains two hundred new features (!) and while we can’t delve into all of them we’ll discuss some of the best changes that users have been most excited about.
This upgrade, unlike any in the past, is being offered FREE for anyone running Snow Leopard or newer. To do a clean install you’ll need a blank USB drive with 8GB; don’t waste a larger drive because it won’t be necessary. Once installed Mavericks OS X will automatically alert you if any of your apps are incompatible, so you’re able to manually upgrade anything that’s necessary.
Following in the footsteps of the recent iOS7 update, your calendar will abandon it’s fake leather look for a much more modern and streamlined appearance. You’ll notice some new features like event notifications with quick links to maps and directions, and even travel time and weather forecasts. Your events can be set to alert you to when you should be leaving to travel to them, not only when they’re beginning. Your Notes will also forego the old lined yellow paper tear-offs and is now just a plain off-white page that can be synced to all of your iOS devices.
A great new addition to your apps in Mavericks OS X is iBooks; finally, you’re able to view and sync all your iBooks with your iOS devices. You won’t see the illusion of pages turning as in the iOS versions of iBooks, and instead you’ll be doing simple scrolling left and right to move to the next “page.” iBooks has always surpassed the Kindle app in it’s user-friendliness, quick access to the store, and interface, so Mac users frustrated with not being able to access their iBooks libraries should be quite happy with this new addition.
Improvements to Maps integration mean that you can send directions from Mac to iPhone for instant voice navigation. Bookmarks and recent searches are also pushed to your iOS devices so locations you’ve recently looked up are viewable while on the road.
In Safari you’ll notice faster performance and a brilliant new shared links sidebar that will display recent links posted by people you follow on Twitter and Linkd In, and you can quickly click to view the link and then re-Tweet without leaving the tab you’re working in. A power-saver feature will stop running plug-ins on any tabs you aren’t using, and AppNaps will automatically pause any apps not being actively used. Another power-saving feature in Mavericks OS X is a menu under your power icon showing any open apps or programs that are hogging power, and these apps can be shut down from this menu. Any idle apps are now stored in compressed memory so they don’t use up as much RAM.
For enhanced management of your security you’ll be getting the new iCloud Keychain system, a password manager complete with a secure password generator (hint: you shouldn’t be using the same simple password for every application and program you log in to!). iCloud Keychain lets you store Safari website user names, passwords, Wi-Fi passwords and even your credit card information in the cloud, making it possible to access all this information from any Apple device.
Wherever you’re working in Mavericks OS X, you’ll now have a simple iMessages pop-up in which you can ignore or reply to any iMessages without actually having to open the app. You’re able to use any TV connected to Apple TV as an external monitor, which will please Mac users frustrated with the glitchy and difficult to use multiple-monitor approach in the previous OS.
We’ve really only scratched the surface here of everything that Mavericks OS X has to offer, but the bottom line is that there’s no reason to not upgrade– today. You’ll be getting the benefit of faster performance and enhanced apps that are simpler and more easily integrated with your other devices, and running the brand new state-of-the-art Mavericks will mean that you’re running the best OS in the world. Who could say no to that?
If you have any questions about Mavericks OS X, make an appointment with Simply MacIntosh for help properly installing or utilizing anything you’re unclear about.