macOS Monterey: Here Are All the Features Your Intel Mac Won't Support

Apple's official public release of macOS Monterey arrives on Monday, October 25, and users should be aware that there are several features in macOS 12 that are only available to machines powered by Apple silicon chips. In other words, they won't work on Intel-powered Macs.

macOS Monterey on MBP Feature
Differentiating the user experience like this isn't anything new to iOS users, since each year the latest iPhone models boast features that aren't available on iPhones that Apple released the previous year.

Mac users on the other hand aren't so used to such fast-paced changes, and the latest software-based depreciations could come as a shock to some. With the possible exception of Object Capture, the following macOS Monterey features won't be available to anyone running the new software on an Intel Mac, even if it was purchased from Apple only last year.

Portrait Mode in FaceTime

macOS Monterey FaceTime Portrait Mode

With Portrait mode in macOS Monterey, you can blur your background during a FaceTime call, so that the focus is on you rather than what's behind you. The feature is commonly used by other video conferencing apps like Zoom and Teams to obscure untidy domestic scenes and other sources of distraction or embarrassment. If you're using an Intel-powered Mac though, it won't be an option.

Maps Interactive Globe

maps monterey globe view

On Macs powered by M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max chips, Apple has enhanced the Maps app to include a new globe view that allows you to spin the world around and zoom into different regions on Earth. In previous versions of macOS, zooming out maximally in Maps would present you with a flat world map, but the new globe view gives you a three-dimensional view of Earth from space that's a lot more fun to navigate.

More Detailed Cities in Maps

maps monterey 3d view coit tower
The globe also allows you to drill down into areas, where you'll find more detailed information on vast geological features like mountain ranges, deserts, forests, and oceans, and more comprehensive maps in cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, and London, which includes details for elevation, roads, trees, buildings, landmarks, and more. If you're using an Intel-based Mac, this extra detail will be lacking.

Object Capture

Object Capture allows users to create a photo-realistic, AR-optimized 3D object by stitching together a series of photographs. The technique is called photogrammetry, which previously required specialized software to work out, but with Monterey, Apple has integrated its Object Capture API into macOS, which makes the process faster and a whole lot easier when using an app that supports it.

object capture photocatch
For example, using an app like PhotoCatch allows users to import a video, or several photos of an object from several angles, and with no additional effort, turn them into a realistic 3D model of the object, which can then be easily integrated into any AR app. All Apple Silicon Macs support Object Capture, but it is only supported on Intel Macs that have at least 16GB of RAM and 4GB of VRAM.

Siri Text-to-Speech

siri text to speech

The Text-to-speech feature in macOS allows users to select portions of text or highlight whole documents to be read out to them. Users of ‌Apple Silicon‌ Macs can use the text-to-speech voice feature in more languages than Intel-based Mac users, including Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, and Finnish.

On-Device Keyboard Dictation

keyboard dictation
With keyboard dictation, you can dictate text anywhere you can type it, and the feature improves the more you use it, personalizing over time. On ‌Apple Silicon‌ Macs, keyboard dictation now protects user privacy by performing all processing on-device, meaning it's completely offline. And thanks to on-device dictation, users can also dictate text of any length without a timeout. On Intel Macs, however, there's a time limit of 60 seconds.

Apple Speeds Up Its Transition Away From Intel

m1 v intel thumb
This is a unique period in the Mac's history, as Apple is currently in the midst of a two-year transition from Intel processors to its custom Apple silicon chips in Macs, with the changeover slated to be completed by WWDC 2022.

The transition began last November, when Apple debuted the ‌M1‌, its first custom-designed chip, in the entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and Mac mini, followed by the 24-inch iMac in April. Just last week at its "Unleashed" event, Apple unveiled new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models powered by even higher performance ‌M1 Pro‌ and ‌M1 Max‌ chips.

Intel chips continue to be available in desktop machines that include the ‌Mac mini‌, ‌iMac‌, and Mac Pro, but upgrades for all of those devices are in the works and expected next year, so expect the next version of macOS to exclude Intel-based Mac users to an even greater extent than Monterey.

Related Forum: macOS Monterey

Popular Stories

iPhone 16 Pro Sizes Feature

iPhone 16 Series Is Just Two Months Away: Everything We Know

Monday July 15, 2024 4:44 am PDT by
Apple typically releases its new iPhone series around mid-September, which means we are about two months out from the launch of the iPhone 16. Like the iPhone 15 series, this year's lineup is expected to stick with four models – iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max – although there are plenty of design differences and new features to take into account. To bring ...
maxresdefault

Apple's AirPods Pro 2 vs. Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro

Saturday July 13, 2024 8:00 am PDT by
Samsung this week introduced its latest earbuds, the Galaxy Buds3 Pro, which look quite a bit like Apple's AirPods Pro 2. Given the similarities, we thought we'd compare Samsung's new earbuds to the AirPods Pro. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design wise, you could potentially mistake Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro for the AirPods Pro. The Buds3 Pro have the same...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

10 Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Monday July 8, 2024 5:00 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models simultaneously, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different – already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
macbook pro january

Best Buy's Black Friday in July Sale Takes Up to $700 Off M3 MacBook Pro for Members

Monday July 15, 2024 11:05 am PDT by
Best Buy's "Black Friday in July" sale is in full swing today, and in addition to a few iPad Air discounts we shared earlier, there are also some steep markdowns on the M3 MacBook Pro. You will need a My Best Buy Plus or Total membership in order to get some of these deals. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Best Buy. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small...
Generic iOS 18 Feature Real Mock

Apple Seeds Revised Third Betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to Developers

Monday July 15, 2024 10:09 am PDT by
Apple today seeded updated third betas iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to developers for testing purposes, with the software coming a week after Apple initially released the third betas. Registered developers are able to opt into the betas by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the ‌iOS 18/iPadOS 18‌ Developer Beta ...
ipaos 18 image playground

Apple Releases First iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 Public Betas

Monday July 15, 2024 1:16 pm PDT by
Apple today provided the first betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to public beta testers, bringing the new software to the general public for the first time since the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. Apple has seeded three developer betas so far, and the first public beta includes the same content that's in the third developer beta. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...

Top Rated Comments

MJaP Avatar
36 months ago
This is just mean spirited of Apple, there's no reason that Intel Macs couldn't support the majority of these features, this is just Apple's attempt to hobble their Intel lines in order to "encourage" people to upgrade. I'm not a fan of this tactic.
Score: 101 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Sandstorm Avatar
36 months ago

Bruh 99% of people will never need these features that are apple M1 only.
But it is still ridiculous that very recent and very expensive Apple Mac devices will not handle simple things like displaying a globe. It is just so lazy (or possibly just another small example of artificially created obsolescence).
Score: 51 Votes (Like | Disagree)
falkon-engine Avatar
36 months ago

This is just mean spirited of Apple, there's no reason that Intel Macs couldn't support the majority of these features, this is just Apple's attempt to hobble their Intel lines in order to "encourage" people to upgrade. I'm not a fan of this tactic.
Yeah Apple does this unfortunately. Sometimes they even ‘disallow’ certain older intel models from booting the operating system at all. Making you believe the features of the new OS will put a strain on the older Mac so as to not be a good experience. I say ‘disallow’ in quotes because while by default an unsupported mac model is prevented from booting the newer OS, Apple does allow the use of a boot flag to disable the kernel compatibility check and may possibly allow the OS to boot on the older hardware.

However, this is rubbish. Forced obsolescence in my opinion. With open core legacy patcher, my 9-year old MacBook Pro that got cut off by Apple after Catalina can totally run Big Sur and now Monterey. It lives on! And that Mac was upgradable. So with an SSD and 16 GB of ddr3 ram, it still runs very well despite its age.

Apple is full of it, when it comes to cutting off support of perfectly capable machines. With Apple silicon I don’t know how long they’ll support their m1 macs. But once they start cutting off support for the m1, I don’t know if there will be a way around it like on the intel side, other than needing to upgrade of course. Which in the end creates more e-waste. And incentivizes you to spend more money.
Score: 45 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jim Lahey Avatar
36 months ago
2021 - new chip required in order to render a globe in 3D graphics ?
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MrGimper Avatar
36 months ago
No blurred background on FaceTime when I can do it in Teams on my 2014 iMac. Cash grab for sure.
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kung gu Avatar
36 months ago

This is just mean spirited of Apple, there's no reason that Intel Macs couldn't support the majority of these features, this is just Apple's attempt to hobble their Intel lines in order to "encourage" people to upgrade. I'm not a fan of this tactic.
Bruh 99% of people will never need these features that are apple M1 only.
Score: 35 Votes (Like | Disagree)