Home : Software Terms : Catalina Definition


Catalina is the sixteenth version of Apple's macOS operating system and is also known as "macOS 10.15." It follows macOS Mojave (version 10.14) and was released on October 7, 2019.

While Catalina includes several new features, it is primarily a performance update. Notably, Catalina is the first version of macOS to drop 32-bit support. By removing support for 32-bit applications, Apple trimmed a significant amount of "legacy" code from the OS. The result is a lighter-weight operating system optimized for 64-bit applications.

While most modern apps are 64-bit, older 32-bit apps will not run in macOS 10.15.

Catalina is also the first version of macOS that allows an iPad to serve as a secondary display. This feature, called "Sidecar," works with both a wired and wireless connection between a Mac and an iPad. It also introduces "Project Catalyst," which makes it possible for iOS and iPadOS apps to run on macOS.

Most of Catalina's other new features are related to the bundled apps. For example, iTunes is replaced by three new apps: Music, Podcast, and TV. Mail adds message blocking and built-in unsubscribing. The Reminders app provides a new way to organize and manage reminders. Catalina also includes Screen Time, a feature introduced in iOS 12. It allows users to track how much time they spend on their computers, including how much they use individual apps.

Updated: May 13, 2021

Cite this definition:


TechTerms - The Tech Terms Computer Dictionary

This page contains a technical definition of Catalina. It explains in computing terminology what Catalina means and is one of many software terms in the TechTerms dictionary.

All definitions on the TechTerms website are written to be technically accurate but also easy to understand. If you find this Catalina definition to be helpful, you can reference it using the citation links above. If you think a term should be updated or added to the TechTerms dictionary, please email TechTerms!

Subscribe to the TechTerms Newsletter to get featured terms and quizzes right in your inbox. You can choose to receive either a daily or weekly email.

Sign up for the free TechTerms Newsletter

How often would you like to receive an email?

You can unsubscribe at any time.
Questions? Please contact us.