Friday, Oct 01, 2021, 18:50 Software

macOS Big Sur: Apple Releases "Device Support Update"

Just yesterday, a new update was released for macOS Big Sur which Apple is calling the "Device Support Update". According to the update's description, it's intended to address issues with updating or recovering iOS/iPad devices via the Mac. Apple decided not to release the update alongside or as a part of the upcoming macOS Big Sur 11.6.1 update, but rather as a separate, smaller, barely 200MB large update. This is likely a result of some of the critique of massive download sizes and wait times for recent macOS updates. The release in this manner could possibly prevent another hour and a half update time.

Content: Backup & Recovery
According to feedback, the Device Support Update isn't showing up for all users and it's not yet known which hardware configurations the update is intended for. However, we haven't seen the update on either our Intel or M1 Macs running Big Sur. The update is likely intended to fix a problem in connection with the iPhone 13 and iPad. On the same day as the start of sales for the iPhone 13, Apple released a support article stating that a system update should always take place before a device is backed up. Thus, given the content of the update and timing of the release of the aforementioned support article, the update likely fixes issues with syncing between the iPhone 13 and Mac.

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Possible To Install Without Restarting
Should your own Mac be eligible for the "Device Support Update", it can be found in the corresponding section of the System Preferences, as usual. The installation doesn't require a restart, unlike some others system or security updates. The current system version is still 11.6 (released on September 13th along with iOS/iPadOS 14.8). Up until now, Apple hasn't published any further support documents which directly indicate what errors may have been addressed. Thus, it's unknown whether or not the update focuses on the previously mentioned interaction between the new iPhones and iPad and the Mac or not.

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