macOS 14 Sonoma: Release date, features, Mac compatibility

macOS 14 Sonoma: Release date, features, Mac compatibility

macOS 14 Sonoma is Apple’s next operating system for its Mac models. After tightening the integration between Mac and iPad with Stage Manager and the Freeform app with macOS 13 Ventura, here’s what we know about the company’s next version of macOS.


What will Apple call macOS 14?

During the WWDC 2023 keynote, Apple announced that macOS 14 would be called Sonoma. This is a historic city in northern California at the heart of the renowned Sonoma Valley winemaking region. For this operating system, Apple invites users to “come for the power and stay for the fun.”


Unlike other years, macOS Sonoma focuses on more Mac functions rather than integration between Mac and iPad. This operating system improves video call experiences and boosts gaming performance. Here are its top features.

Video conferencing

Image source: Apple Inc.

Presenter Overlay keeps you part of the conversation when sharing your screen on a video call. You can choose between two overlays, large and small. While the large overlay keeps the spotlighting you, with your screen framed next to you on a separate layer, the small option puts you on a small bubble floating on the presentation.

During FaceTime or video conferencing calls, you can react with your hands. This feature adds a reaction that fills the camera frame with fun 3D augmented reality effects like hears, confetti, fireworks, and more.

There’s even a new screen-sharing picker that lets you share an app or even multiple apps when on a video call, and with your Studio Display or iPhone as a camera, you can adjust the frame with zoom and pan controls or use Recenter to automatically place yourself in the center of the frame in a call.


macOS Sonoma adds Game Mode, which automatically gives games top priority on the CPU and GPU of your Mac, lowering usage for background tasks while dramatically reducing latency with wireless accessories.

Screen Savers and widgets on desktop

Widgets on macOS SonomaImage source: Apple Inc.

macOS Sonoma brings new slow-motion screen savers of “breathtaking” locations from around the world. When you log in, they seamlessly become your desktop wallpaper. In addition, you can finally place widgets on your desktop from your widget gallery.

These widgets are interactive, and with Continuity, you can add your iPhone widgets to your desktop without having to install the corresponding apps on your Mac.

In addition, when you open an app or window or use Stage Manager, widgets fade into the background so you can concentrate on the task.

Safari and Passwords

Image source: Apple Inc.

Safari got lots of new features. Now, you can create a profile to keep your browsing, history, extensions, Tab Groups, cookies, and favorites separated for topics like Work and Personal.

Apple says Search in Safari with macOS Sonoma is also more responsive and shows easier-to-read and more relevant suggestions. Another feature is web apps that come to your dock. You can launch a web app to get an app-like experience with a simplified toolbar.

Apple is also enhancing private browsing by letting you lock your private browsing windows when you’re not using them. It completely blocks known trackers from loading on pages and removes tracking added to URLs as you browse.

For Passwords, Apple now lets you share a set of passwords with your trusted contacts. You can create a group and choose a set of accounts to share. Passwords stay up to date for everyone in the group, and you can remove someone at any time.

PDF and Notes

In addition, macOS Sonoma improves enhanced AutoFill for PDF. The system picks saved information from Contacts to fill out a PDF or scanned document faster.

You can also view a full-width PDF right in Notes and click between pages. You can even keep more than one PDF in the same note for easy access to related documents. Lastly, you can start a document in Notes and finish in Pages by clicking the Share button.

macOS Sonoma release date

After unveiling macOS Sonoma during the WWDC 2023 keynote, the software will have a public beta by July, with the release date expected for later this fall.

Can I try macOS Sonoma beta now?

If you are a developer, you can download the first macOS Sonoma beta. Here’s how to do it:

  • After enrolling in the developer beta, go to Settings;
  • Open General and select Software Update
  • Click on Beta updates and switch from macOS Ventura Developer Beta to macOS Sonoma Developer beta

BGR will let you know once you can enroll in the public beta program.

Compatible Mac models with macOS Sonoma

Apple Mac Studio FrontImage source: Christian de Looper for BGR

. Here are the Macs that will support macOS 14 Sonoma:

  • 2019 iMac and later
  • 2017 iMac Pro
  • 2018 MacBook Air and later
  • 2018 MacBook Pro and later
  • 2019 Mac Pro and later
  • 2018 Mac mini and later
  • 2022 Mac Studio and later

Original Article

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