macOS Catalina will be available in October

Posted: 11 September 2019 5:30 am

macOS Catalina

But the jump to 64-bit apps only could leave older Mac fans very unhappy.

At its Apple "By Innovation Only" event, Apple was rather quiet on the subject of when it would release the next version of its macOS operating system, macOS Catalina.

That's surprising, because in years gone past, it's made a headline of that release date. Still, after the event, Apple reportedly revealed when the next version of its macOS operating system, macOS Catalina will be available for download.

Well, sort of, but not in much detail. As MacRumors reports, Apple has indicated that macOS Catalina will become available "in October".

Quite when Tim Cook hits the macOS Catalina release lever isn't entirely specified. We're totally sure that's a thing he has, because if you were Tim Cook, you'd do it, right?

It seems likely that the vague date may be tied into an announcement around new Mac hardware, although it could just be to give Apple's software developers time to iron out any last minute bugs.

However, if you are keen on macOS Catalina and can't wait to upgrade, there's a significant catch to be aware of.

The 32-bit app trap

While macOS Catalina brings with it a number of new features, including new Music, Podcasts and TV apps, the ability to use your iPad as an external display and more, there's also a catch.

Just as it did with iOS some years ago, Apple is making a hard shift to supporting only 64-bit code based apps with macOS Catalina. What that means is that if you have older macOS apps based on 32-bit code, they won't run on macOS Catalina.

If you're running macOS Mojave, those are the apps that actually warn you that they won't be compatible with future versions of macOS. Catalina is that newer version.

If you do have 32-bit apps on your Mac that you rely on, you'll have to carefully choose whether to upgrade or not, presuming there isn't an available upgrade or alternative 64-bit app.

Which Macs can upgrade to macOS Catalina?

The good news for Mac owners is that if your Mac can already run macOS Mojave, the odds are pretty good you'll be able to upgrade to macOS Catalina. Specifically, you need a Mac that is at least this new:

  • MacBook (2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • iMac Pro (from 2017)
  • Mac Pro (2013 or newer)

Visit our Apple iPhone 11 news hub for more news from Apple's launch event.

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