Beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta test program will be able to download macOS Catalina beta through the software update mechanism in System Preferences after installing the correct profile. Those who want to be part of Apple's beta test program can sign up to join the beta test site, which gives users access to iOS, macOS and tvOS beta.
Potential beta testers should make a complete backup of Time Machine before installing MacOS Catalina and it may not be wise to install it on a primary machine because grazing can be unstable and often has many errors.
macOS Catalina eliminates the iTunes app, which has been an important Mac feature since 2001
macOS Catalina has a useful new Sidecar feature, designed to make iPad a secondary display for Mac. It can act as a traditional second screen or with mirror function. Apple Pencil support works with Sidecar so you can turn iPad into a drawing board with apps like Photoshop.
For those with an Apple Watch set up to unlock the Mac, there is now an option to approve security requests in Catalina by pressing the side button of the clock. Macs with a T2 chip in them also support activation locks, making them useless to thieves much like it does on the iPhone.
There is a new Find My app that lets you track your lost devices, and earlier this functionality was only available via iCloud on Mac. There is yet another option to find your devices, even when offline, utilizing Bluetooth connections to other nearby devices, which is especially useful on Macs because it does not have a mobile connection.
Apple expands screen time for Mac in Catalina, allowing Apple users to track device usage over Mac, iOS and iPad for a better overall picture of time spent using electronics.
For developers, a "Project Catalyst" feature allows apps designed for iPad to be transferred to Mac with just a few clicks in Xcode and some minor tweaks. Apple's ultimate goal with Project Catalyst is to bring more apps to Mac.
Images have an updated interface that better accentuate your best images, Safari includes a new home page with Siri Suggestions, Mail has a new email blocking feature and another new option for muting threads, and the Reminders app has been revised and is now more useful.
Before installing macOS Catalina be aware that it makes 32-bit app support gone, so some older programs that have not been updated at any time may stop work. For more on macOS Catalina be sure to check out our MacOS Catalina roundup.