macOS Monterey (macOS 12) is the 18th version of Apple's desktop operating system. It follows macOS Big Sur (macOS 11) and was released on October 25, 2021.

Monterey is a major macOS release (version 12.0), but contains fewer significant updates than its predecessor Big Sur. While macOS 11 included major changes to the user interface, macOS 12 maintains the same look and feel and nearly all the same icons. The most notable changes in Monterey are improvements to Apple-branded apps.

Examples of app updates in Monterey include:

  1. FaceTime: adds "SharePlay," which supports screen sharing and allows mulitple people to watch videos together
  2. Photos: improves the Memories feature with a new look, an interactive interface, and more memory types
  3. Notes: adds tags and Smart Folders for categorizing notes
  4. Shortcuts: brings the iOS app to macOS, which integrates with Automator
  5. Maps: provides new transit information and more detailed information for large cities

Some OS-level updates in macOS Monterey include:

  1. Focus: enables custom notifications while working as an alternative to Do Not Disturb
  2. Universal Control: allows the same keyboard, mouse, and trackpad to be used with a Mac and iPad
  3. Accessibility: includes "Full Keyboard Access," which makes it possible to control everything on a Mac using only a keyboard
  4. Translation: adds system-wide translation to text via right-click → Translate

macOS Monterey supports MacBook Pros, MacBook Airs, and iMacs released in 2015 and later, Mac minis released in 2014 and later, and Mac Pros released in 2013 and later.

Updated November 26, 2021

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