Apple Speeds Up, Refines OS X With 'El Capitan'

by Devin Coldewey /  / Updated 
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Apple's Craig Federighi took to the stage at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference to announce the newest version of OS X, which will be called "El Capitan" after the famous cliff in Yosemite National Park. And like its predecessor, it'll be free to download.

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The last release of OS X brought a lot of changes to its look and feel, so this one is more about smoothing out problems, making quality-of-life improvements, and boosting performance. Federighi said that El Capitan will be significantly quicker when launching and switching apps and documents, and that computing efficiency adds to battery life.

Related: Apple Updates MacBook Pro, Cuts Price on High-End iMac

Improvements have been made to Spotlight, making it more responsive to natural language — so you can search for "photos I took last August at the beach" and it will pull those up. Mail, Safari, and Notes have a number of small but welcome improvements, and it's also easier now to organize your multiple desktops or split the screen between two apps.

Developers will get access to El Capitan today, and a public beta will start in July — but if you'd like to wait for the finished version, that should come out in the fall.

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