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OS X Yosemite vs OS X Mavericks – Which OS Should You Run On Your Mac?

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El Capitan isn’t available for Macs yet, so you’re probably running Yosemite, the current version, or Mavericks, which was released ahead of it. In this article we’ll compare the two operating systems, referring to their performance, user interfaces and features.

User Interface

The transition from OS 9 to OS X was radical, because Mavericks looked old-fashioned and needed some makeup. In Yosemite, Apple adopted the flatter design and got rid of the glossiness, the windows are chrome-free, the traffic light buttons have a better functionality and the green toggle defaults to full screen. Plus, Yosemite is more transparent and the applications and the desktop can be seen through toolbars.

Fonts And Icons

Maverick used the Lucida Grande font, which was replaced by Helvetica Neue – you can recognize it in iOS 7. The problem is that the new font doesn’t look too good if the screen has a lower resolution.

A few icons have been flattened, while the others have a 3D effect and are more complex. The Trash Can houses more trash and it’s more colorful, while the new Finder icon is more beveled. We noticed that in Yosemite, the icons have brighter highlights.

Widgets

Apple introduced widgets in OS X Tiger, but gradually, the Dashboard started to stagnate and now it’s turned off by default in Yosemite. It seems that in the seventh beta of OS X El Capitan, the Dashboard has been disabled as well. In Yosemite’s Notification Centre, widgets have a more compact form, but they aren’t too many.

AirDrop

In Mavericks, the users can share files between proximate Macs, using the Finder window, but it was a bit disappointing, because not everyone has two Macs, but rather a Mac and an iPhone or iPad. Therefore, Yosemite extended support for transfers between these devices.

Handoff

This feature is part of Continuity and its role is to allow the users to continue their work on another device. For example, they can start writing an email on an iPhone, or they will open a page in Safari on the iPad, and then continue writing/reading on the computer. In the past, iCloud’s continuity between the mobile platform and OS X didn’t work properly, and in Mavericks, it was more hard to start a project on GarageBand for iOS and to open it on the computer, after downloading it from iCloud, but the photos had no problem when they were automatically updated. In Yosemite, you can pick up where you left off on your iOS device, and vice versa.

iCloud

There are many users who like to be cautious, to store their data on the cloud. In case they accidentally delete files from their Macs, they have a copy stored on the cloud, so they can restore them immediately. iCloud is Apple’s cloud service and in Yosemite it offers 5GB of free storage, but you can buy more storage, choosing from one of the following options:

20GB – $0.99
200GB – $3.99
500GB – $9.99
1TB – $19.99

Spotlight

Yosemite’s search option pops out into a dialogue box and it can be used to search for local drives and online, through the Bing browser. If you don’t remember what the name of the website you’ve visited in the past is, Spotlight will look at your web history and bookmarks. Also, you can change the location where Spotlight should search for information, by going to the System Preferences.