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Siri Comes to Mac Computers

Siri on Apple TV
Siri on Apple TV
More New Software Updates From Apple
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Earlier this month, Apple announced new technology at its yearly Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). In the last Personal Technology report, we talked about the changes to Apple’s iPhone and iPad operating system.

Today we will discuss changes for Mac computers, Apple TV and Apple Watch. We will also report on other news from Apple at the WWDC.

OS X Operating System for Mac Computers

The operating system for Mac computers is getting an update and a new name. Mac OS X is gone. Now it is called macOS. This year’s version of the operating system is called Sierra.

MacOS Sierra
MacOS Sierra


The Mac computer will connect more with other Apple devices so tasks can be shared among devices.

No more need for passwords to unlock your Mac. Auto Unlock will let you log into your Mac computer from your Apple Watch.

Universal Clipboard will let you cut or copy on one device and paste it onto another. This works for text, video and images.

iCloud Drive will let users access their Mac desktop from another Mac computer and their iPhone.

A new picture-in-picture feature will let users watch a video in one window and have another window open on a Mac. The video can be dragged to any size and position.

Siri, Apple's voice assistant, is coming to Mac computers. Click the Siri button and ask it to find files, answer questions, play music, and send messages.

Sierra macOS will be available for public testing in July. You can sign up at to be a tester. The final version will be available as a free upgrade in the fall.


Owners of Apple Watch will get the Watch OS 3 update to make the watch apps work faster. Watch OS 3 is set for release in the fall.

WatchOS 3
WatchOS 3

Apps will now open from the Watch, without having to connect with an iPhone. Apps will load immediately, with information available when the app opens. Favorite apps will be stored in the Watch’s memory, and will update in the background to give current information when those apps are opened.

Users will also be able to write on the screen with a new feature called Scribble. Write letters and they will be changed to typeface. Scribble works in English and Chinese.

New watch faces were announced at the WWDC. Changing watch faces will be easier.

A new SOS feature lets users place an emergency call from the Watch by pressing and holding the side button. The Watch will recognize where the user is and call the right number for that country. So it will call 911 for emergency services in the US, 999 in Hong Kong, and so on.

Watch OS 3 also has a relaxation feature. The Breathe app supports deep breathing exercises. Users can set the amount of time they want to do the breathing exercises. The Watch can tap the user to help set a breathing speed.

The app also shows the user’s heart rate.

Wheelchair users will be able to measure their activity with the Apple Watch. Apple worked with experts to track activity of wheelchair users. Reminders will be changed to Time to Roll instead of Time to Stand.

tvOS Operating System for Apple TV

Apple TV will get an update to its operating system this fall.

Siri on Apple TV
Siri on Apple TV

Past versions of Apple TV had 80 channels, but the latest version has over 1300 channels and 6000 apps. Siri will search across apps for movies, TV shows and YouTube videos.

tvOS will permit users to sign in once instead of signing in for each paid subscription app. Single sign-on also shows all of the apps available on Apple TV.

The Remote app on the iPhone will be able to have all features that the Apple TV remote has, including Siri. You will be able to use your iPhone as a game controller.

Swift Playgrounds

Swift, a coding language for apps that run on Apple devices, will be easier to learn with a new app from Apple: Swift Playgrounds. This app is designed for iPad and helps people learn to write code with Swift.

Swift Playground
Swift Playground

I’m Marsha James

Carolyn Mohr wrote this report for VOA Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.

Are you interested in the updates to Apple operating systems? Which features are you looking forward to most? Are there any features that you would have liked that were not announced?

Share your thoughts in the Comments Section below or on our Facebook page.

Words in This Story

operating system - n. the main program in a computer that controls the way the computer works and makes it possible for other programs to function

task - n. a piece of work that has been given to someone : a job for someone to do

text - n. data handled by a computer, cell phone, etc., that is mostly in the form of words

access - v. to open or load (a computer file, an Internet site, etc.)

drag - v. to move (items on a computer screen) by using a computer mouse

code - v. to change (information) into a set of letters, numbers, or symbols that can be read by a computer