These macOS 12 Monterey features do not work on Intel-handicapped Macs

Unveiled at WWDC21, macOS Monterey gives users the power to accomplish more than ever.
Unveiled at WWDC21, macOS Monterey gives users the power to accomplish more than ever.

According to Apple, here are the macOS 12 Monterey features available only on Mac computers with Apple Silicon (currently, the M1 chip):

• Portrait mode
Inspired by Portrait mode on iPhone and powered by the M1 chip, this new video effect puts the focus on you — not what’s behind you.

• Live Text in photos
Your Mac now lets you interact with text in any image. Click an address and it opens in Maps. Call, message, or save any phone number you see. You can copy and paste just as you would with any other text. And personal details and information from images never leave your device.

• All-new city experience
Explore cities with unprecedented detail for roads, neighborhoods, trees, buildings, and more. Visit amazing 3D landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge in both the day and dark mode maps

• Interactive globe
Discover the natural beauty of Earth with a rich and interactive globe. Explore new enhanced details for mountain ranges, deserts, rain forests, oceans, and more.

• Neural text-to-speech voice in more languages
The latest neural text-to-speech voices are now available in more languages: Swedish (Sweden), Danish (Denmark), Norwegian (Norway), and Finnish (Finland).

• On-device dictation
Keyboard dictation improves as you use your device, personalizing over time. On-device dictation helps protect your privacy by performing all processing completely offline. Dictation in search uses server-based dictation. Available in Arabic (Saudi Arabia), Cantonese (Hong Kong), English (Australia, Canada, India, Singapore, UK, U.S.), French (France), German (Germany), Italian (Italy), Japanese (Japan), Korean (Korea), Mandarin Chinese (China mainland, Taiwan), Russian (Russia), Spanish (Mexico, Spain, U.S.), Turkish (Turkey), and Yue Chinese (China mainland).

• Continuous dictation
With on-device dictation, you can dictate text of any length without a timeout (previously limited to 60 seconds).

Of course, macOS 12 Monterey is compatible with Intel-handicapped Macs (excluding the features listed above), including:

• Mac mini – Late 2014 and later
• ‌iMac‌ – Late 2015 and later
• ‌iMac‌ Pro – 2017 and later
• MacBook – Early 2016 and later
• ‌MacBook Air‌ – Early 2015 and later
• MacBook Pro – Early 2015 and later
• Mac Pro – Late 2013 and later

MacDailyNews Take: Intel-handicapped Macs are the past. Apple Silicon Macs are the future.


  1. “Intel-handicapped”? What happened to you, MDN? Your tech writing and opinion was once balanced, logical and concise; now it sounds like you might have difficulty speaking & writing with Fox News & Apple’s balls in your mouth. How about, “these new features are available only when using Apple Silicon” not the imbecilic hyperbole of “IT’S BROKE IF YOU DON’T HAVE THE NEWEST AND DA BESTEST!!!!” The Intel processors are still as good as they were before Apple Silicon was released; the fact that Apple Silicon seems to be significantly better doesn’t render those Macs that are still using Intel-driven Macs “hAnDicaPPED!!!!” Be better. That’s a phrase I’m sure you’re familiar with.

    1. MDN is dead wrong here. Please tell me why a 28 core max pro cannot do continuous dictation. This is a blatant money grab and is pure evil. Apple gets worse and worse, and MDN justifying this bs just emboldens more bad behavior. f apple, and shame on MDN

      1. This is a fair question. I think it is because hardly anyone has a 28 core max pro, and the Intel chips that everyone DOES have are rather slower, so more coding work.
        – I’ll admit though that stuff that if something works on my A12 iPad, lacking it on Intel seems rather harder to justify.

        1. It doesnt have to be the 28 core machine. The 8 core MacBook Pro CURRENTLY can easily handle on chip continuous dictation (with dragon speaking, which is the software licensed by apple for dictation). And apple does it for 60 second blocks CURRENTLY. These machines are MORE than capable in doing the same continuous dictation.

          The feature is being withheld either out of sloth, spite (or perhaps both).

          This is pathetic instance where apple lives up to accusations of it being evil (which are normally bogus, but here, on point).

          1. My uneducated guess is that that capability relies on the built-in parts of the M1 chip for the dedicated neural network hardware (AI processing) and Image signal processing (ISP). For intel you’d have to find an alternate and external solution which wouldn’t be as fast. (since no shared memory architecture) I’d also guess it is using the same software as in the iphone/ipad. No point in spending time supporting alternates for those, or writing temporary code for something which is on the way out.

            1. You’re ignoring that CURRENTLY intel Macs do 60 seconds of dictation. And full blown version of dragon run on intel processors that do continuous on chip dictation. CURRENTLY.

              The knee jerk to constantly apologize for apple’s bad behavior is in part why there is more bad apple behavior.

    2. Actually, the fact that Apple Silicon is significantly better does mean that those Macs stuck with outmoded Intel chips are HANDICAPPED, by the very definition of the word. Look it up.

        1. Witty.

          Here are some “handicapped” synonyms:

          • impediment
          • hindrance
          • obstacle
          • barrier
          • encumbrance
          • disadvantage
          • drawback
          • stumbling block
          • shortcoming
          • obstruction
          • limitation
          • constraint
          • restriction

          All of which describe Intel-handicapped Macs, especially those with reduced features under macOS Monterey. very aptly.

    3. Okay, so you spent what you consider to be a lot of money on an Intel-handicapped Mac and now you realize that there’s no future beyond a constant reduction in features going forward as you march into obsolescence.

      Tough shit.

      Sell it and get a real Apple Silicon-powered Mac like someone with a brain.

      1. And what Apple Silicon based Mac Pro shall I buy that is equivalent to a 28 core, Intel based Mac Pro with 768 GB RAM and two Pro Vega II Duo video card and 20 TB of SSDss so the I can run very compute and graphics intensive simulations (and not have to run them on the DOE big machines)?

        Your answer is?

        Running a bare bones OS under BootCamp so that it can run as close to “bare metal” as possible works today. What Apple Silicon based machine are you suggesting I get as a replacement today?

        I’m waiting for your suggestion.

        1. It’s a two-year transition. You’ll have to stick with your Intel-handicapped Mac for a while longer until the vastly superior Apple Silicon Mac Pro is released.

          BTW: You won’t need 768GB RAM with Apple Silicon and third-party video cards. That’s the old, outmoded, antiquated way of computing.

    4. Funny how PL Ranger lambastes MDN regarding their choice of words, such as, “Intel handicapped” tech writing and opinion and yet PL chooses to use ‘Fox News’ balls in your mouth as opposed to CNN’s or MSNBC’s. Very interesting PL. Would that be because CNN & MSNBC lack balls? I can only surmise based on the hard hitting journalistic reporting on Hunter’s email to lawyer with Hunter using the “N” word or USAToday reporting on how Trump wore his pants correctly. However, everyone knows CNN and MSNBC are the ones gagging on Joe Biden’s dribble, er, drivel.

      Anyway, why wouldn’t the word handicapped be proper with the possibility of even more M1 or M2 only features coming down the MacOS line and will not be available for Intel Macs? It’s just a fact of the state of things. My iPhone is handicapped, in that, software upgrades have reached their end because the phone lacks the technology found in later iPhones. It doesn’t make the iPhone I use bad. It just makes the more recent iPhones the future, with 5G capability and upgradable iOS to enhance them with future capabilities. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with looking at it that way or using the word ‘handicapped’.

    1. By definition, all Intel-based Macs are HANDICAPPED and will be even more HANDICAPPED was time goes by, until they’re finally landfilled, forgotten, or recycled.

      MDN’s description of non-Apple SIlicon Macs as “Intel-handicapped” is perfectly correct.

  2. And why would any of the features NOT work? as it’s Programmed in? is there any magic the m1 chip can do that the intel cannot? doubtful. Apple is Limiting things on purpose AGAIN. They have a habit of Protecting their current and future models with new features while shit canning the old stuff continuously. Every OS iteration has “features” that is actually BLOATWARE that slow the computer down, I don’t need all these processes running if I don’t use the damn “Features”!

    1. It is very possible that these new features are written to take advantage of the machine learning aspects of the M1 chip (and likely follow on Apple Silicon chips too). From a company and programmatic stand point it probably does not make sense to write code that takes advantage of specific aspects of the Mx series and not write a whole new software code set that attempts to do the same thing using the native capabilities of the Intel chips.

      I doubt it is malicious on Apple’s part. It’s a matter of taking advantage of a specific set of capabilities and not spending the moneytime to make implement the same functionality to make the software “backward compatible”.

    2. Yes.. there is magic in the M1 chip, it’s an entirely different architecture than Intel.. most notably the shared memory architecture and the fact it has neural network, and image processing built in which access the same memory pool. No need to swap over a BUS. They really don’t have a habit of limiting things on purpose.. just when things won’t function as expected. As an example, look at the fact they are still supporting the 6 year old iPhone 6S with the announced iOS update. I don’t think anyone would have given it a second thought if they had cut that from the list.

  3. In other words, that ‘amazing compatibility’ is a bunch of hooey. Again. At this point the vast majority of Macs, including those new-car-expensive Mac Pros, are all still running on Intel. I doubt anyone is replacing those this year or next, or the one after that. I’d love to know who exactly the folks at Apple think ran and out and replaced their entire workflows with M1 Macs the day they were announced are.

    The actual TRANSITION to Intel was smoother, and actually at the time added a great deal more value with the simple addition of BootCamp, whereas we seem to be regressing to the Power PC days wherein I still have not upgraded to Big Sur, as much as I genuinely like it, because many developers could care less about Apple parity again, and the fact remains as well that major software is not fully functional on M1 Macs (80% ore less of functions is just not good enough)! All Apple’s own demos featuring games and so forth running on M1 tell us is that it’s perfectly possible, just that no one cares enough to bother doing it, as before.

    I swear the next time the children that have taken over the company showcase their brilliant ‘innovation’ with their new emoji selection, I am selling my stock. 😛 Apple has always had hiccups, but the past number of years have been cringeworthy. Given that some of the tech is legitimately impressive, that this is the case is downright sad.

    1. If you think that the PowerPC to Intel transition or the 68000 to PowerPC transition were seamless, you had a very different experience than the rest of us. The key reason that MacOS is superior to Windows is that Apple has never been obsessed with backwards compatibility.

        1. I did not find the transition from PowerPC to Intel to be smoother than the current one. I will admit that it was better than the transition from 68000 to PowerPC. It took several years before some pro software like all the Adobe products made that transition and the emulation did not run very fast. However, it also took years for Microsoft to release Mac versions of the Office apps that ran natively under MacOS on Intel with feature parity.

          The first Apple Silicon Macs were only released to the public about seven months ago. I think the transition has been comparable to the previous two transitions at that point in time. During those transitions, new software released by Apple and upgrades that provided substantial new features tended to be exclusive to the new architecture. The same is true this time. Apple has a lot of money, but it does not have enough to afford to develop new features for obsolescent hardware.

  4. This is bull shit from Apple. In my view, its a way to move us to their processors.

    Tell you what Apple, you offer me a fair price for my 16″ MBP and maybe I’ll bite.

    You have close to a quarter of a trillion dollars in cash, you can afford to by back some of these handicapped now pieces of shit macs and can sell them to other countries like you do with used iPhones.

  5. “MacDailyNews Take: Intel-handicapped Macs are the past. Apple Silicon Macs are the future.”
    The problem with this take is that Apple is still currently marketing and selling “Intel-handicapped” hardware — ALL of their pro-level line in fact — and probably will for at least another year. To release a new OS that doesn’t fully function on hardware that is still being sold and supported (for probably four or five years into the future) seems like a bad decision. Apple just told customers NOT to buy any of their high-end Macs.

  6. Having spent some $11-12,000 only last year for a new Mac Pro with “yesterday’s technology” and apparently in the time since a speeded up process of obsolescence as Apple assured us it would support the Intel Macs for “many years to come” without caveats, I can’t help but feel betrayed. Especially since only a little over a year later Apple informs us a new operating system would not have all the features of the new OS possible under Apple Silicon.

    Why did they put out a new Mac Pro at all? Too little too late and a dollar short. I don’t know why they bothered except they had screwed up the 2013 Mac Pro so badly.

    1. Supporting a product does not imply providing new features for it. Everything that runs on your Mac Pro on the day before Monterey comes out will still run for many years to come, exactly as promised. So will many new features included in Monterey that are not being implemented in ways that are hardware dependent. You cannot expect Apple to go back and write Intel-dependent code for the cases where Apple Silicon requires a different approach. This is exactly what happened during the last two hardware transitions–existing code continued to work on the old hardware but new code increasingly took advantage of optimizations that required the new hardware.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.