Operating system updates cause a big burst of admiration from both ordinary users and dedicated fans. Updates for iPhone, iPad or Mac always mean new technological capabilities, performance, interface and design improvements, new interesting applications, increased usability, a bunch of cool and ultra-modern features, and so on. In particular, Apple fans are worried about the new update macOS High Sierra since iOS updates always make things better.
To begin with, the new macOS High Sierra won’t bring fantastical changes to your Mac, but I’ve found some beneficial features to share with you. MacOS High Sierra has some useful features up its sleeve, but they only concern Apple Photos, Notes, and Mail. So if you don’t use them much, it would probably be not necessary for you to upgrade to macOS High Sierra.
Nevertheless, today we will take a closer look at macOS High Sierra (version 10.13), figure out why it is better than its predecessors and whether we should upgrade our Macs.
The Most Honest macOS High Sierra Review You Can Find
Today, we will review the macOS High Sierra and try to find its best aspects. Let’s start with the very first feature – APFS (Apple File System). The last versions of iOS had HFS+ (Hierarchical File System), a file system with which users managed their data. Now, iOS gets an analog of the previous file system, but this time it is much better and more efficient.
APFS is available when you format a drive in Disk Utility, but it’s currently only for SSDs.
The HFS + needed updating because it was very old (existed since far 1985). Now, your computer gets a fresh file system with bigger storage devices than ever. However, APFS will only be available if you are using flash storage or an SSD (solid-state drive), not a hard drive or Fusion drive.
Let’s sum up the major features of Apple File System:
- Built-in encryption, as well as support for full disk encryption.
- Snapshots used for recording the current state of your storage device now have a practical value for backups.
- Faster working performance.
- Space sharing that helps resize and manage different sections more easily.
- With APFS, you can manage large storage capacities and files.
Now, Apple supports virtual reality and Metal 2 in MacOS High Sierra. We all remember what a high excitement people had during the arrival of virtual reality on the PC market. This phenomenon did not pass by our favorite Macs – Apple also decided to play in the virtual reality. Now, new macOS High Sierra has support for VR handsets (for instance, HTC Vive). Currently, the company maintains connections with Valve, Unity, and Epic, and in the near future, it plans to have 360-degree video in Final Cut Pro X and Motion.
Speaking of Metal 2, with the new iOS update, you’ll get a built-in support for Metal 2, well-known graphics API (Application Programming Interface). Metal 2 gets an improved performance, as well as support for external GPU hardware. This means your MacBook’s graphics performance will be substantially enhanced with the use of Thunderbolt.
The only reason why you should not hurry up with a new update from Apple – macOS High Sierra still has a lot of flaws, which means that the virtual reality will not appear to you in its best light. In the future, we still have to create a Mac-compatible VR software.
Another important feature of macOS High Sierra is that your Mac will receive two new file formats on iOS 11: HEVC (High Efficiency Video Encoding), which is supposed to be a new video format, and HEIF (High Efficiency Image File Format), designed for images.
Both of the videos in this still image were encoded at 1080p at 400 kbps. The top video (706KB file) used HEVC (a.k.a. H.265). The bottom video (751KB file) used H.264. Click to enlarge. Sample files available at x.265.com.
Let us begin with the first video format, HEVC, or H.265. It offers smaller sizes for video files than the standard video format (H.264). So, you will be able to create a 4K video without getting a large file which fills up all storage space on your smartphone.
HEIF does the same – it provides much smaller file sizes than its predecessor, JPEG. Well, you will have an opportunity to read the HEIF and HEVC files from your iPhone or iPad. However, it does not necessarily mean that you have to update your iOS now – you may deny using new file formats and export HEVC videos or HEIF pictures into previous file formats.
Safari 11 will also feel the influence of the new macOS High Sierra. First of all, users can now control the automatic playback of multimedia. No more annoying videos that frighten and annoy you from the first second you open the website. Safari 11 allows you to enable/disable video playback, as well as manage settings.
Secondly, Safari 11 gets an Intelligent Tracking Prevention mode on macOS High Sierra. Maybe you know that tracking comes from third parties who are watching you to sell a particular product and are chasing you on every site. So, Safari will allow you to prevent tracking and deactivate it.
A few more features for Safari 11: an always-on Reader mode, notification controls, and persistent page zoom.
An interesting fact, Apple’s users get concerned most about the Photos app. The developers say they’ve received tons of questions about this application, and here’s the result.
Photos will get the most changes with the new version of iOS for Mac. This application will have settings on the sidebar and toolbar, and a drag-and-drop organization, import history, and other features. In the Edit mode, there will be an improved access to tools, Live Photos, and new cool filters. In addition, in the new Project Extensions, you can create websites, photo books, and more with the help of third-party services.