Now that the Mac M1 are available and the developers are updating their apps for official M1 support, you might be trying to figure out which of your apps (as well as the ones you want) are optimized for Apple Silicon. Check out five free ways to check universal macOS apps.
What are Universal macOS Apps?
You will often hear developers talk about M1 support when launching new versions of their apps. But if you are looking for M1 support, Apple uses the term “Universal” for Apple Silicon / M1 optimized applications (which also work with Intel Macs) and qualifies Intel’s x86 applications (these applications require Rosetta translation on Macs M1). You can see this information in Finder and System Report (under About This Mac) along with other options that we’ll cover below.
This can be a bit confusing as there are two types of universal apps, one refers to M1 / Intel support and the other if the same app can be downloaded on iOS and macOS on iPhone, iPad and Mac.
Intel macOS apps on Mac M1
Keep in mind that even if your Mac M1 is running Intel applications, it can often do so with better performance thanks to Rosetta 2 translation (happens automatically) than when running native on an Intel Mac. It’s just that developers can unlock even better performance when apps are optimized for the Apple Silicon M1 chip.
Alright, here are the easiest ways to find universal macOS apps for your existing software as well as apps and games you might want to get.
Five ways to check universal macOS apps
- From Finder, in your Mac’s Applications folder, right-click an app> Get Info (or Command + I shortcut), now search for Intel or Universal at the top under “General> Type:”
- You can also go to in the top left corner> About This Mac> System Report> Software> Apps (you’ll see a list of all your apps and if they’re universal macOS apps)
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