Apple announced the latest version of their Mac operating system a few weeks ago at WWDC. MacOS Ventura, in all it’s orangey goodness, will be available later this year and features some of the biggest year-on-year upgrades and improvements that Apple have ever brought to the Mac!
In this blog we're going to highlight 7 key features coming to MacOS Ventura that we think will be most important and most useful for other Small Business Owners to help improve their daily productivity and overall running of their business.
Apple's in-built Mail app is getting a major overhaul for the first time in years with the release of MacOS Ventura. And, its about damn time! I've been resorting to using Microsoft Outlook on my MacBook and iPad because, while it is slow to open and full of bugs, it's also stuffed full of far more features than the standard Apple Mail app. Well, not any more, thankfully, thanks to these new upgrades to the system.
Improved Search will delivery more accurate results, making it easier to filter through old emails to find what you’re looking for, including attachments
Undo Send will FINALLY allow you to correct those accidents before you get the egg on your face. I've been clamouring for this to come to both Mail and Outlook for years and I'm delighted it's finally happening.
Schedule Send is another feature I’ve been asking for for years! This will make planning a day so much easier, particularly if you're a busy sole trader, as you can get all your emails done in the morning
New follow up reminders will help you to remember to come back to that important email later without having to set external reminders or tasks or rely on Alexa to tell you
Attached Alerts mean that Mail is finally catching up to Outlook & Gmail and will catch and alert you if you write something like “attached” in the email and forget to add the attachment before sending. Now, I'm not actually giving Apple any praise for this because it's such a basic feature that has been on other servers for well over a decade!
That said, in combination, all of these mail features are great and i can see myself finally dropping Outlook, which I’ve relied on for years because it has all these features, and swap back to Mail full time
Spotlight is getting a huge upgrade to match 3rd party apps like Alfred. For one, it’s getting a nice and long overdue redesign to bring it up to speed. It will also introuce the ability to find images in multiple locations like Photos, Messages,
Notes & Finder, and even use live text to search for an image based on the text inside it Spotlight will now also allow you to use quick actions like using the new Clock App to start a timer or alarm just by typing into spotlight.
All of this will speed up your daily busywork tasks of searching for random buried documents and information without wasting all your time clicking through folder after folder.
Apple have joined with Microsoft and Google in pledging to do away with Passwords, starting with the introduction of PASSKEYS.
Passkeys are a new sign-in method that are end-to-end encrypted and safe from phishing & data leaks, making them stronger than common 2-factor authentication. All this means your private work documents and, more importantly, client data will be more secure on your system! A BIG win!!
Safari is already comfortably the best browser to use on Apple Silicon Macs - it loads quicker and uses FAR less memory & battery life than Chrome. And it’s getting some nice updates too. When used on Apple Silicon Macs & iPads, Apple claim it is officially the fastest browser in the world.
The biggest update to Safari is Shared Tab Groups. Allowing you to share tabs & bookmarks, send messages and even start FaceTime calls through Safari. This will make collaborating with your team much easier and more seamless. Group together all the key websites & sources for a project in one tab that everyone can access easily, even when working from home.
5: STAGE MANAGER
The piece de resistance from Apple’s WWDC announcement, Stage Manager is a new system for organising apps and windows into a single view on your desktop,
Stage Manager will help do declutter your workspace by prominently displaying the current app you’re working on front and centre, and arranging all your other open apps off to the side for quicker access and a cleaner screen
If you’re anything like me, then even with 2 or 3 monitors to work off, you still end up with dozens of app windows open at any one time, so, if it works as well as Apple say it does, this could be a bit of a game changer for your productivity and how you go about your daily tasks
This will also be available on iPadOS16 for iPads using the M1 Chip (2021 iPads Pro and 2022 iPad Air).
6: CAMERA & FACETIME
I'm going to lump these both in together because they’re 2 sides of the same coin.
Let’s start with the camera and the newly introduced “Continuity Camera” feature, which allows you to use your iPhone as your MacBook’s webcam! This. Is. Awesome!!!
Particularly if you do not have one of the 2021 14 or 16” MacBooks with the improved 1080p camera - but even if you do, you can now use your iPhone XR or newer’s 12mp 4K Camera for your video calls.
Now, i love the camera on my MacBook, it’s a huge step up over the old ones, and yet I will absolutely be making use of this feature for conference calls! Video calls are a daily occurrence for so many of us, and there’s nothing worse than someone on a crappy webcam streaming in worse quality than a PS1 game. How you present yourself on a video call is hugely important nowadays and the better the camera the more professional you’ll come across
As an added bonus, if you have an iPhone 11 or newer, you can also utilise it’s Ultra Wide-Angle camera to finally bring Centre Stage to the MacBook. Many of us thought Apple should have done this last year with the new notched cameras on the new MacBooks, but they’ve now made it available for a wider audience of users beyond those with newer MacBooks, so we’ll forgive them for skimping on the cameras last year!
You can also use something called Desk View, which uses some combination of, I assume, ultra-wide cameras and witchcraft, to focus on what you're doing on your desk.
To match all these nice camera additions, FaceTime will now feature Handoff, meaning you can move a FaceTime call from one device to another with just a click which will be very handy if you’re on a call at your desk and have to run out for some reason but dont want to cancel or reschedule the call - you can just pick up your iPhone and continue the call.
Now this one won’t be of all that much use to me specifically, but for you creative types, the new FreeForm app allows for more intricate collaboration among team members.
It’s essentially a big white board in an app that multiple people can work on at any time, a bit like a shared Google Doc. The ability to Collaborate & plan projects in real time like this will open so many new doors for those in creative jobs still working from home.