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Apple releases macOS 10.12 Sierra with Siri, Apple Pay for web, Apple Watch login, more

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Apple on Tuesday released macOS 10.12 Sierra, bringing Siri to the desktop, many cross-platform integrations between iOS and macOS, Apple Pay for the web, and hundreds of other enhancements and bug fixes.

Siri on the Mac is new, and is similar to that on the iOS. Options available to users include reminders, photo browsing, Apple Music, FaceTime calls, restaurant reservations, and deep Finder integration.

The macOS Sierra update has also introduced cross-platform clipboard syncing between the Mac and iOS without third-party solutions, an implementation of iOS' Picture in Picture feature, and synchronization of files to iCloud for iOS and macOS access.

Other enhancements included with Apple's latest Mac operating system include the APFS file system's first deployment, rich Messages on par with the iOS implementation, improvements to Photos, Apple Pay for the web, and auto unlock via Apple Watch.

Analysis of the Sierra beta code pointed to 10 GBps USB 3.1 Gen 2 implementation in future hardware.

According to Apple:

  • Messages makes conversations more interesting, allowing users to preview web links and play video clips from right within the app; respond to messages with a Tapback like a heart, thumbs up and more directly onto a message bubble; and send bigger emoji for more message impact.
  • Tabs are now available across Mac apps that support multiple windows, including Maps, Mail, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, TextEdit, and even third-party apps. 
  • Picture in Picture floats video from Safari or iTunes in a window over the desktop. The window can be resized, dragged and pinned to any corner of the screen so users can watch video while they work.
  • Optimized Storage frees up space when a Mac starts getting full by storing infrequently used items in the cloud and helping users remove apps and files they no longer need.
  • Apple Music in iTunes makes it even easier to discover new music and browse exclusives and new releases.
  • Shoppers can now click the Apple Pay button at checkout on nearly 300,000 participating websites, including 1-800-Flowers, Gilt, Instacart, Lululemon, and Warby Parker.
  • Siri on the Mac can help send messages and email, find documents, look up information, search a user's photo library, adjust system preferences and more.
  • Universal Clipboard allows users to copy content from an app on one Apple device and paste it into another app on a different Apple device.

MacOS Sierra requires a 2009 iMac, 2009 MacBook, 2010 MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Mac mini, or Mac Pro.