In its WWDC keynote, Apple introduced a new authentication technology called “passkeys” as a simpler, more secure replacement for passwords. Glenn Fleishman joins us to explain how passkeys work and why they’re so much better than passwords. Adam Engst draws on a recent experience helping elderly friends with their Macs to offer feedback on how Apple can create a better experience for senior citizens. Spoiler alert: passkeys are a step in the right direction. Adam also shines a light on Apple’s quiet update to macOS 11.6.7 Big Sur, which fixes a bug that made email attachments difficult to open. Notable Mac app releases this week include Pages 12.1, Numbers 12.1, and Keynote 12.1, Ulysses 27, Acorn 7.2, Zoom 5.11, SoundSource 5.5.3, EagleFiler 1.9.8, DEVONthink 3.8.4, GraphicConverter 11.6.2, SpamSieve 2.9.49, and Quicken 6.8.
If you’re still running macOS 11 Big Sur, it’s worth updating to the quietly released version 11.6.7, which fixes a problem that prevented email apps from opening attachments. It may also help clear Time Machine blockages, but it could also introduce problems by removing Rosetta from M1 Macs.
After spending several days helping some elderly friends with their Macs, Adam Engst came away with a new appreciation for how difficult some aspects of Mac use are for older people. Some Apple efforts are a step in the right direction but may not be available to today’s users. And there’s plenty of room to improve.
Passkeys are a new way to log into websites and apps that replaces passwords. The industry-standard passkey technology is simpler and more secure than passwords (even with two-factor authentication), resists phishing, and is built to be compatible across browsers and platforms.
Brings mail merge to Pages and adds dynamic backgrounds to Keynote. (Free, various sizes, macOS 11.0+)
Adds support for creating and publishing tables. ($49.99 annual subscription, free update, 33.3 MB, macOS 10.15+)
Adds support for Shortcuts to apply filters and filter presets, crop, flip, resize, rotate, auto enhance, and more. ($39.99 new, free update, 19.8 MB, macOS 10.14+)
Updates the video conferencing app with a lengthy list of improvements and bug fixes. (Free, 32.9 MB, macOS 10.10+)
Updates the the Audio Capture Engine with improved reliability and reduced CPU usage. ($39 new, free update, 26.6 MB, macOS 10.14+)
Adds preliminary support for the forthcoming macOS 13 Ventura to the document organization and archiving app. ($49.99 new, free update, 33.1 MB, macOS 10.12+)
Long and varied list of additions and improvements for the document and information manager. ($99 new, free update, 136 MB, macOS 10.14+)
Maintenance release with a smattering of improvements and bug fixes for the Swiss Army knife of graphics programs. ($39.95 new, free update, 275 MB, macOS 10.13+)
Adds support for the forthcoming macOS 12.5 Monterey update and macOS 13 Ventura. ($30 new, free update, 20.2 MB, macOS 10.9+)
Improves the Foreign Bank Accounts Report and introduces the new Easy Answer Report. ($35.99/51.99/77.99 annual subscription, free update, 95.5 MB, macOS 10.13+)