Apple has announced that macOS 10.12 Sierra is to launch on September 20th, with developers gaining access to the Gold Master (GM) release this week.
Available in public beta since July
, macOS 10.12 Sierra sees a shift from the OS X name back to a more classic moniker - albeit with a modern twist. There's more to the new release than the name, of course: the replacement of OS X 10.11 El Capitan brings with it a wealth of improvements and enhancements, starting with the integration of Apple's Siri voice-activated assistant into the desktop and laptop operating system for the very first time.
Additional changes included in macOS Sierra include under-the-hood optimisations designed to boost storage space and performance, built-in object recognition capabilities for the bundled Photos app, a customisable system tray - the first in Apple's history - a lock screen which can bypass the need for a password when a compatible Apple mobile device is nearby, and shared clipboard functionality for transferring information to or from said Apple mobile devices.
Although the mainstream release of macOS Sierra was rumoured for October, Apple appears to have accelerated the launch. The company has now confirmed that the software will release on September 20th, and - as with its predecessors - will be a free upgrade for all supported Apple hardware. The launch is to trail the release of iOS 10, for Apple's mobile devices, by a week.
More information on the features available in macOS Sierra are available from Apple's official website