Apple's next operating system, OS X El Capitan, will be available as a free upgrade to its Mac users on the 30 September, and follows on from  the Yosemite release launched last year.

OS X El Capitan brings with it several new features, all of which aim to deliver a "more refined user experience and faster performance" rather than a huge range of new features. In fact in some cases the changes are so subtle you might not notice any difference when you come from the 

We have rounded up 10 of the features that will make a difference to your every day use of the new desktop software so you can be ready to try out the new features when the download option becomes available. 


Apple OS X El Capitan comes with a number of new gestures to make it easier to do things, such as keep and delete messages in Mail. A two-finger swipe on your track pad left will delete the message, while a two-finger swipe right will keep the message.

A four finger swipe up on the desktop meanwhile reveals your available desktops if you are full screening apps, and then lets you access the new spilt screen feature so you can run two full screen apps on the same screen at the same time. 

There is nothing more annoying than when you have several tabs open and once and all of a sudden, one of them starts singing at you but you aren't sure which one it is.

With Apple OS X El Capitan, you will be able to mute any audio with a quick click on the audio logo within the address bar, as well as see where the audio is coming from.


We all have our favourite sites that we visit a lot, whether that is Twitter, Pocket-lint or Amazon. Apple OS X El Capitan will allow you to "pin" your favourite sites by dragging the site's tab and dropping it on the left.

They will be easily accessible when you first open Safari on the main page and when you click on them, they will open in a new tab.


Spotlight has been improved with OS X El Cap, offering better search options, as well as the ability to resize the Spotlight search box itself.

The new software will search more places for more useful results, such as weather and sports scores. For example, if you search for your favourite team, it will tell when their next game is or what the score is of a current game.

Along with improved Spotlight search, Apple has also improved search within other areas, including Mail.

You'll be able to search your mailbox for "messages ignored from …" for example, or search your files for "documents I worked on last June".


One of the biggest new features in El Capitan. Multi-tasking is something that Windows does well and with OS X El Capitan, Apple makes easier with Split View.

Split View will, on instruction from you, position two apps side-by-side so you can answer emails, while also working on a Word document for example and you will be able to make the email box smaller and the document bigger or vice versa.

Mail has been improved in other areas too with OS X El Capitan. Users will be able to open a full screen in Mail when the upgrade and open new tabs within the compose box.

Additionally, if you are composing a new email and you receive another email, you can open that too, and drag and drop pictures or files directly into the previous email you were composing.


OS X El Capitan will also make it easier to create multiple desktops to give you more room to work. Although you've been able to see multiple desktops before, getting to them way always clunky. Now you can see them quickly and manage their order and what's on them with ease. 


Apple has announced Metal will be heading to Mac with OS X El Capitan, which it claims will pave the way for "new levels of realism and detail in games and other apps".

For those that don't know, Metal is a core graphics technology that is designed to give apps near-direct access to the GPU, which should mean faster and more efficient rendering performance for richer onscreen graphics.

Last but not least (for now) Apple has promised improved performance with OS X El Capitan.

App launch is claimed to be up to 1.4x faster, app switching up to 2x faster, display of first Mail messages up to 2x faster and PDF opening in Preview up to 4x faster.