macOS 13 Ventura vs Monterey: Should You Update This Fall?
The next version of Apple’s MacOS – now known as Ventura – will launch later this year, but we already know a lot about Ventura and its new features after Apple unveiled everything at WWDC 2022 in June. Beta testers are now able to run Ventura, but the rest of us will have to wait until the fall. The question is, will there be enough improvements to tempt you to upgrade from Monterey to Ventura?
In this article we will walk you through how Ventura compares to Monterey and discuss the new features it brings to your Mac. Before you get too excited about the new features coming Ventura, a warning: your Mac may not be able to run Ventura, or it may only be compatible with certain features. See: macOS 13 Ventura compatibility and Ventura features that only work on new Macs.
What’s new in Ventura compared to Monterey?
macOS has been going through some serious fixes over the last few generations. Big Sur has come up with a redesigned interface, which introduces new features like Control Center and a modified notification center. It has been created in macOS Monterey by adding new features to FaceTime such as voice isolation for enhanced sound and shareplay to enjoy content with others in the call. Monterey has brought continuity tools like Mac to AirPlay, allowing other Apple devices to be displayed on the big screen. Title Features – Universal Control – did not arrive until March 2022, now here you can share a mouse and keyboard between Macs and iPads.
A lot of new features are coming to macOS Ventura, which goes beyond what we’ve achieved in Monterey and refines and improves some of the features we’ve enjoyed over the years. As usual, many of the newer versions of MacOS bring better integration with your iOS and iPadOS devices, but there are some new features that only Mac users will enjoy.
Here are the main ways to differentiate macOS Ventura from macOS Monterey:
One of the new design changes highlighted at WWDC is Stage Manager. This is to make it easier to move between multiple apps opened on our desktop. Think of it as an evolution of space and exposure – two useful features that have been in our Macs for a long, long time. If you use a cluster of Stage Manager applications and the window appears on the left side of your screen, you can combine the things you’re working on without having to clutter your screen with everything you open in one day.
On the left side of the app you are working on you will see other open apps. If you have multiple windows for any of them, they will be stacked together to keep things simple. Clicking on anything in the left column will immediately bring it to the front to replace what you were working on, which is then added to the Stage Manager area.
For an app with multiple instances open, clicking on the top one in the Stage Manager area will move it to the front, then the stack will move forward to show the next instance. Clicking on the stack will keep cycling through the open window until you find the one you like.
Of course, you can do a lot with Spaces on macOS Monterey (and several previous versions), creating separate desktops where you can keep apps separate by reducing clutter. So, if you already do that, the stage manager might not go that far.
Read more about Stage Manager.
Spotlight is already a powerful way to search for apps, files and other content on MacOS Monterey. On MacOS Ventura, Apple is improving the Spotlight so that it integrates better with other Apple devices you own. For example, you’ll be able to easily find photos from your iCloud photo library as well as your hard drive or the web. Need a picture of a lighthouse? Type it into the spotlight and you should present lots of images because of the way the spotlight uses machine learning to recognize the content of the image. The Ventura Spotlight will also support the live text feature added to iOS 15 and allow you to interact with the text of those images, which is great.
Apple has enlarged the results pane, enlarging it so that you can get richer search results with more information about the topics in question. You can also start timers from the spotlight, which can be quite effective if you are always looking for the clock app on your iPhone because you can’t set your Mac timer and alarm.
Mail is one of the main apps that lags behind many third party options (see: Best Email App for Mac). Should this be changed to MacOS Ventura, Apple has finally introduced some features that have been available on other offers for quite some time.
This includes the ability to undo the sender, which inadvertently remembers any email you send. You’ll also be able to schedule emails so that they arrive on time, plus Mail will monitor the messages you send and remind you if someone has not yet received a response so you can follow them. There are also search results with more detailed results and clever software tweaks that help you find what you’re looking for, even if the search term is misspelled.
At macOS Monterey, we’ve seen the introduction of tab groups, which allow users to create a group of tabs that you can open and access separately. This means you can create collections for certain things, such as your early morning news, shopping for specific products or gathering information for a project.
Now, on macOS Ventura, you’ll be able to take it a little further with new shared tab groups. It works the same way, but allows you to share tab groups with other people who can add their own tabs to the collection. This can be very effective when planning trips together, working collaboratively on projects, or laughing at each other over the fun things you find online.
Privacy is always a concern online and MacOS Ventura takes it through a new feature called Paskey. These basically use the Touch ID or Face ID for authentication, a password alternative to locally created sites and apps. The best part is that the information never leaves your Mac, so it cannot be stolen from the company’s web server or emailed to you. It’s early days, but Apple’s goal is to get rid of passwords completely, and that’s good for us.
One of the stand-out features of the MacOS Monterey was Universal Control, which lets you use your keyboard, trackpad or mouse interchangeably on the iPad and Mac, with the added benefit of dragging content between the two. All this is achieved through continuity and handoff. On MacOS Ventura, Apple continues to use these technological capabilities with a new feature called Continuity Camera. It instantly turns your iPhone into a webcam for your Mac. It’s well documented that Mac webcams are a bit uncomfortable, so being able to use a much higher rear camera on your iPhone makes perfect sense.
It supports center stage and portrait lighting, and if your iPhone has an ultra-wide camera, it can split the view between you and your desk. Very clever.
Handoff also makes it easy to switch between FaceTime calls on your Mac, iPhone or iPad Ventura, so you can take the call to your iPhone while walking to your desk, then switch from your iPhone to Mac.
See: What is the Continuity Camera and how to use it for more information.
Should I upgrade to macOS Ventura?
In addition to all of the above changes, Apple has also announced that the MacOS Ventura will feature enhanced gaming capabilities, notes, dictation, home, reminders, Apple News, weather and even watch app updates via the Metal 3. All of this will make macOS Ventura a worthy successor to macOS Monterey.
Just keep in mind that Apple has announced that it won’t cut several Macs when upgrading, so check out our Mac guide to get Max Ventura to see if your device is eligible. If so, and you don’t want to wait until the end of this year to try out the new features, you can always read our How to Install MacOS Ventura Beta Guide.