The software update streamlines access to the macOS, iOS and watchOS, making it easier for iDevice lovers to switch between platforms, from the Mac to the iPhone to the Apple Watch.
This is also great news for owners of older Mac and MacBook models that date back to the previous decade: the Sierra upgrade has been made compatible with the iMac and MacBook of late 2009; the Mac Pro, Mac mini and MacBook Pro of mid-2010; and the MacBook Air of late 2010.
iDevices of the noughties have thus been officially welcomed into the era of digital voice assistants, wearable tech and mobile payments, thanks to the macOS 10.12 Sierra. Here are a few of the best cross-platform features of the update:
1. Siri On Desktop
The voice assistant Siri will let users search for items on the desktop, pull up information in real time, and perform certain functions using natural language commands, from prompts like "Show the PDFs in my Downloads folder" to queries like "How do you spell Czechoslovakia?"
Users can pin Siri results in the Notification Center to help them find what they need much faster. The digital assistant can also proceed with certain functions while the user is busy with other tasks.
"Siri on Mac is all about multitasking," Apple writes. "You can be working on one thing, like finishing up a document, and ask Siri to send a message to your coworker saying it's on the way — without stopping what you're doing."
2. Apple Pay For The Web
By eliminating the need to enter and re-enter credit card info when shopping online, Apple Pay on Safari offers users a hassle-free and secure method of online payment. A purchase can be completed by double-clicking the side button on the Apple Watch or by using Touch ID on the iPhone.
3. iCloud Drive Integration
Files saved in the Documents folder on the Mac can be updated and stored on the iCloud drive, from which users can pull up items using other Macs and iOS devices.
The iCloud Drive not only provides extra storage — it is also knows which files are rarely used and automatically moves them over to the cloud. Users can also look up files that are no longer used and remove them more easily to help prioritize storage of the latest and most important files.
4. Universal Clipboard And Auto Unlock
Users who love to grab images and texts through the copy-paste method will find the Universal Clipboard to be a handy tool. Items they copy and paste on one device can be retrieved on another.
And this sort of cross-platform integration is also evident in how the Apple Watch can be used to unlock the Mac. "No password typing required," says Apple.
The macOS 10.12 Sierra is a followup to the OS X Yosemite (10.10) and El Capitan (10.11).