Parallels Desktop 15 Switches to Apple's Metal Graphics API, Gains Sidecar, Keychain, and Drag and Drop Support

Parallels today announced version 15 of its desktop virtualization software for Mac, offering DirectX 11 support via Apple Metal, native support for Sidecar in macOS Catalina, and several other enhancements.

Parallels Desktop 15 is the first iteration of the cross-platform software to support DirectX 11 using Apple's hardware accelerated Metal graphics API.


The switch to Metal should bring a noticeable performance boost – Parallels claims 3D graphics rendering is up to 15 percent faster, while Microsoft Office apps should launch up to 80 percent faster.

The enhanced graphics support also expands the number of Windows apps that users can run on their Mac, such as Autodesk 3ds Max 2020, Lumion, ArcGIS Pro, and Master Series.

Gamers meanwhile can look forward to running their favorite titles at faster speeds, with the likes of FIFA 19, Age of Empires Definitive Edition, Fallout 4, Madden NFL 19, Crysis 3, and Mark of the Ninja: Remastered all receiving special mention.

Once ‌macOS Catalina‌ launches in the fall, Parallels' ‌Sidecar‌ support will mean users can wirelessly connect their iPad to their Mac to use as a second display in Windows. There's also new Touch Bar options for Apple Pencil, including Toggle between Pen, Eraser and Mouse modes. Parallels says support for additional Catalina features is currently in development and will be introduced around the release of macOS 10.15.

Notably, the virtualization software is offering better integration with macOS more generally, such as the ability to use screenshot previews in Windows applications and the ability to drag images from Safari, Photos, and other stock Mac apps.

Additionally, Parallels Desktop 15 supports a new category of Bluetooth devices, enabling users to connect an Xbox One Controller, Logitech Craft keyboard, IRISPen, some IoT devices (such as smart home appliances and smart bands) and more. There's also support for Bluetooth Low Energy, making it possible to run an Xbox game in a Windows 10 virtual machine.


Elsewhere, there's now support for the Share menu in Finder, so it's possible to send files from macOS using a Windows email application, and there's now Keychain support, offering quicker login to websites and apps within Windows. A more comprehensive list of changes and improvements in Parallels Desktop 15 is available here.

Parallels Desktop 15 requires macOS Mojave or later to run, and can be purchased for a one-off fee of $99.99, with the more feature-laden Pro and Business editions available at $99 per year.

Users with older versions of Parallels Desktop (including Pro and Business Editions) can upgrade for $49.99, while college students in the United States, Canada, Germany and UK have access to the reduced price Student Edition. A 14-day trial of the virtualization suite is also available.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
15 months ago
New year... new Parallels version.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
15 months ago

New year... new Parallels version.

Yeah, after a few years this really started to annoy me. They’d release a new version but fail to fix critical bugs in the existing version (which was otherwise fine)... and then force you to upgrade.

After the upgrade you then discover that the same bug hasn’t been fixed, rendering the entire VM unbootable and unfixable... again.

Just use Bootcamp and avoid this third party, second rate rubbish. Better yet, find ways to ditch Windows entirely.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
15 months ago
I will hold my praise until I see it tested! Silicon Valley lies are really get on my nerves!
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
15 months ago

I had Paralles subscription.
It’s nice but for personL use is overpriced.
Support is terrible especially if u plan to use linux.

Most of the features are Windows only oriented and this os where it lags behind others.

Agreed. VMWare ftw.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
15 months ago

Agreed. VMWare ftw.

Unfortunately, GFX-wise, Parallels wipes the floor with VMware Fusion. I use ESXI, vSphere, Workstation etc, but Fusion is just slower than Parallels.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
15 months ago
DX 11. Finally.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iPhone 12 Lineup Rumored to Be Named 'iPhone 12 mini,' 'iPhone 12,' 'iPhone 12 Pro,' and 'iPhone 12 Pro Max'

Monday September 21, 2020 5:24 am PDT by
Leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today shared the alleged naming for the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup on Twitter. The tweet proposes that the upcoming iPhone 12 models will be titled "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max." The names likely correspond to the three expected sizes of iPhone 12, with the 5.4-inch model being the iPhone 12 mini, the 6.7-inch model ...

iOS 14 Widgets Offer iPhone Users Creative Home Screen Ideas

Sunday September 20, 2020 8:43 pm PDT by
Updated on September 22nd with hands on video. In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‌the concept of Home Screen‌ widgets, which provide information from apps at a glance. Widgets can be pinned to the Home Screen in various spots and sizes, allowing for many different layouts. Despite the relative lack of...

Hands-On With iOS 14 Widgets, Custom Icons, and Home Screen Setup

Tuesday September 22, 2020 3:25 pm PDT by
Apple with iOS 14 introduced widgets on the Home Screen, leading to unprecedented levels of customization for the iPhone. Combined with Shortcuts that let you change an app's icon, iOS 14 lets you create a whole new look for your Home Screen. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We've been following along with some of the creative alternative Home Screen designs that M...

PSA: New Apple Watch Owners Have to Return Entire Device for Ill-Fitting Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop

Monday September 21, 2020 3:26 pm PDT by
With the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple introduced two new band options, the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop. These new bands are unique because they have no clasps, buckles, or other fasteners, and instead use a stretch design to allow them to pull onto the wrist over the hand. Because these bands are not adjustable, Apple sells each one in nine different sizes to make sure each person...

Apple's iPhone 12 Event Could Happen on October 13 Based on Rumors From Mobile Operators

Wednesday September 23, 2020 11:51 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone-centric event could perhaps be held on Tuesday, October 13, according to information shared with MacRumors by an employee at a UK cellular carrier. There's no way for us to confirm the dates at this point in time nor are we sure on the credibility of the source, but even without a rumor, Tuesday, October 13 is a good guess based on Apple's historic launch timelines, ...

New Images Leak of iPhone 12 Braided USB-C to Lightning Cable

Thursday September 24, 2020 2:37 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple's upcoming iPhone 12 models will ship with a new Lightning to USB-C cable that includes a braided fabric design. Images of the purported cables were leaked in July, and today leaker Mr White has shared new images that give us a closer look at what we might get included in the iPhone 12 box. The photos show a USB-C to Lightning cable with a clearly braided design rather...

Interest in iOS 14 Home Screen Ideas Helps Pinterest Break Daily Download Record

Wednesday September 23, 2020 4:37 am PDT by
Apple's introduction of widgets on the Home Screen in iOS 14 has driven a surge in interest among users looking to customize their iPhone, and that has reportedly had a knock-on effect for Pinterest, whose iOS app has seen record downloads as users flock to its content seeking design inspiration. As reported by TechCrunch, App Store intelligence firm Apptopia was first to note the impact of ...

Apple Releases First Public Betas of iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 With New Shazam Control Center Options

Monday September 21, 2020 10:34 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first public betas of upcoming iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 updates to its public beta testing group, a few days after seeding the first betas to developers and a little less than a week after releasing the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 updates. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS‌ 14.2 updates over the air after ...

Apple Emphasizes That Solo Loop May Increase in Length Over Time, Updates Sizing Guide With More Specific Instructions

Wednesday September 23, 2020 8:26 am PDT by
Apple on Tuesday updated one of its support documents to emphasize that the new silicone rubber Solo Loop for the Apple Watch may increase in length over time, as mentioned in fine print at the bottom of the Solo Loop product page. Apple has also updated its printable Solo Loop sizing guide with more specific instructions, as noted by 9to5Mac's Michael Steeber. The guide now advises users to ...

Microsoft Announces Outlook for Mac Redesign, Improvements to iOS and watchOS Apps

Tuesday September 22, 2020 8:56 am PDT by
Microsoft has today announced plans to bring a new design to its Outlook for Mac app along with several other improvements and features for Outlook on iOS and watchOS. In preparation for the public release of macOS Big Sur, Microsoft has been testing a new design for Outlook on Mac. The design includes Microsoft's Fluent icons and several design cues from Big Sur such as rounded corners....