Contrary to rumors, the macOS Monterey update has turned out to be a relatively big one that brings some noticeable usability improvements. However, unlike iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, Apple has dropped support for selected older Macs with macOS Monterey. That’s not it though, some of the new macOS Monterey features will only be available on Apple’s latest M1-based Macs.
Apple is not bringing selected macOS Monterey features that rely heavily on machine learning to older Macs. If anything, this is just the beginning of Apple taking better advantage of its M1 chip to bring more features to the platform while ignoring Intel-based Macs.
As for why some of the new macOS Monterey features are only available on M1-based Macs, it is likely due to the lack of a Neural Engine on Intel Macs. Incidentally, many of the new features mentioned above are also not coming to iPhone X and older devices on iOS 15.
Below is a list of features that will not be coming to Intel-based Macs.
With Live Text, you can easily copy text from photos on your Mac. So, if you have an image with some important numbers or other details, you can copy it in macOS Monterey.
Updated City Experience in Apple Maps
Apple has revamped the Apple Maps app in macOS Monterey to show cities with additional details for roads, neighborhoods, trees, buildings, and more. You will also be able to visit some key landmarks in 3D.
The new interactive 3D globe of Earth will also not be available on Intel-based Macs in the Apple Maps app.
Portrait Mode in FaceTime
Apple has given a major overhaul to FaceTime with iOS 15 and macOS Monterey. One of the new additions to the service in macOS Monterey is Portrait mode in FaceTime video calls.
The feature will blur the background while on a video call to focus on you.
Apple has improved its text-to-speech implementation in macOS Monterey and expanded it to more languages like Swedish, Danish, and Finnish. However, these improvements won’t be available on Intel-based Macs.
On-device Keyboard Dictation
All keyboard dictation voice input processing in macOS Monterey and iOS 15 happens on-device and offline. This will only be available on M1-based Macs.
Keyboard Dictation Length
On M1-based Macs, you will be able to enjoy unlimited keyboard dictation, which was previously limited to 60 seconds per instance.
If you own a relatively new Intel-based Mac like the 16-inch MacBook Pro or the 27-inch iMac, you are likely going to be bummed about some of the useful new macOS Monterey features like Live Text not being available for it.