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macOS Catalina Available Now

(Image credit: Apple)

The latest version of Apple's macOS operating system, macOS Catalina (10.15), is now available. It includes several new features, including Apple Arcade for Mac, voice control and Sidecar, and it also kills iTunes off of the Mac. Additionally, it includes Catalyst, which lets developers build macOS versions of iPad apps.

On macOS, iTunes is being split into Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV, much like what users already see in iOS and iPadOS. Those who sync their iPhones will now see it in the Finder.

Apple Arcade will show up as a tab in the Mac App Store, and Catalina brings support for Xbox One controllers (as long as they are models with Bluetooth) and PlayStation DualShock 4 controllers.

Sidecar lets Mac owners use an iPad as a second display and use Apple Pencil as a stylus in Apple's own apps or third-party programs updated to allow for stylus input. This can be used on either a wired or wireless connection.

Voice control, similar to on iOS, is an accessibility feature. It uses the speech recognition form Siri to allow for control by voice.

As for Catalyst, Apple has announced that the iPad versions of Twitter, GoodNotes, TripIt, Post-it, Morpholio Board, Rosetta Stone, Jira, Proloquo2Go and others will be available form the Mac App Store, some starting today.

There are also a few security updates, including the OS running on a "dedicated, read-only system volume" to keep it in isolation from other data, according to Apple.

Other features in Catalina include Screen Time (brought over from iOS) to show how much time users have spent in certain Mac apps. The Find My app now combines Find My iPhone and Find My Friends. There's also a new look for Reminders and a gallery view in the Notes app.

Those looking to update to macOS Catalina can check for an update in Settings. It runs on: 

  •  MacBooks from 2016 and later
  • MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs from 2012 and later
  • iMacs from 2012 and later
  • iMac Pros from 2017 and later
  • Mac minis from 2012 and later
  • Mac Pros from 2013 and later