While some consumers were disappointed to learn that the rumoured AirPods Studio and AirTags were pushed back to 2021, Apple had a surprise in store for its fans. The "One More Thing" hardware event was presented as a tribute to the late Steve Jobs' favourite catchphrase. And in true Apple fashion, the tech industry was reportedly impressed by its new M1 chipset, new Mac lineup, and the latest macOS update – Big Sur.

In addition to the new silicon on the Mac Mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro, the online-only showcase highlighted the arrival of Big Sur, which is now live. Mac users might be wondering which models are receiving the update and Apple published the details on their website. The list includes the following devices and the years they were released.

  • Mac Pro (2013 and up)
  • iMac Pro (2017 and later)
  • iMac (2014 and newer)
  • Mac Mini (2014 and up)
  • MacBook (2015 onward)
  • MacBook Pro (late 2013 and later)
  • MacBook Air (2013 and newer)

Although some of the computers that were not listed are compatible with macOS Catalina, the developers appear to have ended software support for these models. Those included are older units which were released before the years indicated above.

As with any major macOS update, Apple introduces new features and design changes. From a visual standpoint, users will notice that the corners of every window in Big Sur are now rounded. Additionally, the edges are slightly transparent to allow users to navigate the desktop more conveniently and new default wallpaper shines through the translucent top menu bar.

However, macOS Big Sur appears to have been optimised from the ground up to take advantage of the capabilities of the new M1 chipset. Benchmarks conducted by Apple reportedly shows the ARM-based process outperforms the competition across the board. However, one of the most exciting upgrades it brings to the table will benefit the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lineup moving forward.

According to Apple, the M1 is not only speedier and more capable than Intel's Core series on older models, but it is even more power-efficient. Those who are purchasing the latest hardware equipped with the new chip will enjoy the longest battery life to date on their notebooks. Big Sur is already preinstalled on the latest 2020 models but current-generation hardware owners can download the update via the App Store.

macOS Big Sur update is now available
Big Sur is already preinstalled on the late 2020 models but current-generation hardware owners can download the update via the App Store. Photo: Apple