Apple released macOS High Sierra 10.13.4 Public Beta 1 on Friday. The move comes just a couple of days after the first developer beta was released. The two biggest known new features in this release are Messages on iCloud and Business Chat. Users will also find the gorgeous wallpaper included with iMac Pro, shown below.
Messages on iCloud
This feature shifts local storage of iMessages to iCloud. Rather than storying everything locally and syncing everything up when you use your individual Apple devices, those devices will instead pull just recent messages from iCloud.
If you have lots of iMessages chats and group chats going—and if those chats are image, movie, or other files-heavy, this will save you gobs of space. For instance, my Messages folder is currently 11GB and growing. It will also make syncing on devices you don’t use every day a lot faster.
Andrew Orr wrote up a great piece about Business Chat. Cribbing from that, Business Chat will work across Apple’s devices like iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch, but not the Mac. Apple customers can start a conversation with a business from Safari, Maps, Spotlight, and Siri.
Apple Public Beta
To sign up for an Apple public beta, you’ll need to provision your Mac at beta.apple.com. We don’t recommend doing so with mission critical Macs, as public betas can break software, change functionality from beta to beta, and sometimes just not work like they should.