Apple Releases ‘Catalina’ (MacOS 10.15)

Posted in UIS News & Announcements  |  Tagged

Apple released today the latest version of its MacOS, version 10.15 (widely referred to as “Catalina”).

Although Catalina is available for free on the App store, we recommend that you wait to upgrade at this time.


UIS is currently testing Catalina to ensure that it works within the Georgetown computing environment and that it’s compatible with all commonly-used university applications and Georgetown technology services. (Upgrading may result in a potential data loss as a result of incompatible applications.)

We will notify you when we are set to officially support it.


University-owned Macs

If you currently have a university-owned Mac computer, we ask that you refrain from upgrading to Catalina at this time. Once UIS has completed testing Catalina, and is ready to support it, we will offer you the opportunity to upgrade; we’ll also be able to assist you with preparation, installation, and training.

Personally-owned Macs

If you are considering upgrading a personally-owned Mac computer, please keep in mind that UIS cannot provide support at this time and that some of your applications might not work satisfactorily with Catalina. (Catalina will not support 32-bit software, and you might be required to update some of your existing programs.) Therefore, unless you have a business need to do so, we recommend waiting to upgrade for now, at least until the first software update, or patch, for Catalina is released.

If you decide to upgrade now, be sure to first back up your data. You can perform a backup via Apple’s Time machine software, storing data in cloud storage services such as Google Drive or GU Box, or by using CrashPlan. 


Among the new and updated features in Catalina are the following:

  • Dynamic Wallpaper. Automatic wallpaper changes from daytime to nighttime, depending on the time of day.
  • iTunes Breakup. iTunes has been separated into apps for music, TV, and podcasts; you can still access the iTunes store for music purchase option.
  • Photos app upgrades
  • New Podcasts app. Search the new Podcasts app library for all apps previously available in iTunes. Podcasts syncs with the Podcasts app on iOS (iPhone and iPad).
  • New Apple TV app. The new app contains a library of movies (for rent or purchase), and tv shows, and contains built-in support for Apple TV channels and Apple TV+.
  • Integrated iTunes backup and syncing functionality. Backing up and syncing is now built into the Finder.
  • Photos app upgrade. The upgrade mirrors the changes to the app in iOS 13.
  • Notes upgrade. As with Photos, the upgrade mirrors changes made to the app in iOS 13. The Notes app includes improved search (with suggestions), a new Gallery view, and the ability to share folders.
  • Reminders app upgrades
  • Accessibility upgrades
  • Safari browser upgrade. Safari will have an updated start page and Siri suggestions, as well as a new Picture-in-Picture mode.
  • New Screen Time app. This is the same Screen Time app that is available on iOS. The app allows you to view app usage and other related information.

Click here for the complete list and description of features in MacOS Catalina.


If you have any questions, contact the Service Center by email, phone, or chat by going to