Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan on a MacBook
It was a small tease, but it was a meaningful one: during the big Apple event earlier this month, which otherwise had nothing to do with Mac, the company showed a mock email during an iPhone 6s demo that listed a ship date for OS X El Capitan.
That day was today, and sure enough, OS X 10.11 is now ready to download. You'll need OS X 10.6.8 or newer installed to update your Mac, and any Mac that was capable enough to run last year's Yosemite should be able to handle El Capitan. Even iMacs and MacBook Pros from 2007 ought to do fine with it.
El Capitan isn't the most dramatic upgrade in the history of OS X; last year's Yosemite certainly offered more of an aesthetic overhaul, although this year's move to the new San Francisco font seen in iOS 9 and watchOS brings some level of visual change. Still, 10.11 offers an array of tweaks and upgrades that should improve many Mac users' day-to-day usage.
We spent plenty of time with the public beta and found that El Capitan is much faster all around than its predecessor, thanks to the new focus on optimisation and efficiency, plus the full-screen split-screen effect is handy, and apps like Safari, Maps, and Notes are nicely tweaked and improved.
Want to hear more about what El Capitan has to offer? Read our feature on the five things you'll love about Apple's revised Mac OS, and read about six of the biggest enhancements found within. And then make sure you have a bit of space available for the download and installation, as El Capitan's installer weighs in at a hearty 6.08GB.