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5 Things to Know About the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 Update

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Apple’s pushed a macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update and the software brings new bug fixes and security patches to Mac users.

macOS Monterey 12.3.1 is a point release and it’s much smaller than the previous version of macOS Monterey (macOS Monterey 12.3). That being said, it’s still a very important upgrade.

With that in mind, we want to take you through everything there you need to know about the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update and its release for Mac.

In this guide we’ll take you through the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update’s performance, the current list of macOS Monterey 12.3.1 problems, the best places to find feedback about macOS Monterey 12.3.1, and more.

We’ll start out with our impressions of macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update’s performance.

macOS Monterey 12.3.1 Review

Even if your Mac is currently running macOS Monterey 12.3, you’ll still see a fairly large download. The exact size of the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 download varies based on Mac model and the version of macOS it’s currently running.

If your Mac is running macOS Monterey 12.3, the installation should take less than 15 minutes to complete. It took around 10 minutes on a MacBook Pro (2017).

For more on the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 download and installation, take a look at our guide.

We’ve been using the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update on a MacBook Pro (2017) for several days now and here’s what we’ve learned about its performance thus far:

Connectivity

  • Battery life is stable.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity is fast and reliable.
  • Bluetooth is working normally.

App Performance

  • Third-party apps including Twitter, Slack, Asana, Gmail, Chrome, and Spotify are working fine at the moment.
  • First party apps like Safari and Podcasts are also stable.

Speed

  • macOS Monterey 12.3.1 feels as fast as macOS Monterey 12.3 did.

If your Mac is struggling on macOS Monterey 12.3 or an older version of macOS, you may want to install macOS Monterey 12.3.1 on your Mac right now.

If you need help making a decision, check out our reasons to, and not to, install the macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update. It’ll help you to one side of the fence or the other.

macOS Monterey 12.3.1 Problems

Like its predecessors, macOS Monterey 12.3.1 update is causing problems for Mac users.

We’re hearing about installation issues, UI lag, issues with first and third-party apps, abnormal battery drain, Wi-Fi problems, Bluetooth issues, and a number of other issues.

If you download macOS Monterey 12.3.1 onto your Mac and run into bugs or performance issues, here are a few resources that could help.

Before you get in touch with Apple customer support, take a look at our list of fixes for the most common macOS Monterey problems. We’ve also released walkthrough that guides you through how to fix macOS Monterey battery life problems.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for in our guides, head over to Apple’s discussion forums. If they can’t help you, you might want to get in contact with Apple Support via Twitter or with customer support via Apple’s website.

If you still can’t fix your issue(s), you might want to schedule an appointment to see a Genius at your local Apple Store.

macOS Monterey 12.3.1 Update: What’s New

Apple’s point upgrades (x.x.x) typically bring important under-the-hood improvements with them and that’s what macOS Monterey 12.3.1 has on board. Here’s the full macOS Monterey 12.3.1 change log:

Bug Fixes

  • Fix for an issue where USB-C or Thunderbolt external display does not turn on when connected to Mac mini (2018) as a second display.
  • Fix for an issue where Bluetooth devices, such as game controllers, may disconnect from your Mac after playing audio through some Beats headphones.

macOS Monterey 12.3.1 also brings two security patches to Mac devices. You can learn more about those over on Apple’s security site.

You Can Downgrade from macOS Monterey 12.3.1

If you run into problems on macOS Monterey 12.3.1 you can downgrade your Mac’s software back to an older version if you think it might help.

There is no time frame for this to expire so if you decide you need to move your Mac back to older software, it’s fairly easy to do if you are prepared. Here’s our guide to downgrade and it will help you understand the process and make the move.

What’s Next

Apple’s confirmed a new version of macOS Monterey and macOS Monterey 12.4 is currently in beta testing ahead of its public release later this year.

The company hasn’t confirmed a specific macOS Monterey 12.4 release date and we expect the software to stay in beta for a little bit longer. As of right now we expect a release alongside iOS 15.5 for iPhone and iPadOS 15.5 for iPad in May.

macOS Monterey 12.4 is a milestone upgrade which means it should bring a mix of new features, security patches, and bug fixes for lingering issues.

If your problems are really bad, or you just want to try new software, you might try downloading the macOS Monterey 12.4 beta onto your Mac right now.

For more on macOS Monterey 12.4 and the beta, have a peek at our walkthrough. For more about the upcoming macOS Monterey 12.4 release date, check out our guide.

4 Reasons Not to Install macOS Monterey 12.4 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install macOS Monterey 12.4 for Better Security

Install macOS Monterey 12.4 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing the macOS Monterey 12.4 update right away.

macOS Monterey 12.4 delivers a whopping 50+ new security patches. These will help protect you and your device from harm.

If you're interested in exactly what Apple's patched up, you'll want to head on over to the company's security site.

As for older macOS updates, macOS Monterey 12.3.1 brought two security patches to Mac users. You can read more about them over on Apple's website

Apple's macOS Monterey 12.3 update had 40+ security patches on board. If you want to learn more about these upgrades, you can check the particulars over on Apple's security site.

The macOS Monterey 12.2.1 update brought an important patch to Mac users. You can learn more about the patch over at Apple's security site

Apple's macOS Monterey 12.2 update had 13 security patches on board. If you're interested in the details, head on over to Apple's website to learn more.

macOS Monterey 12.1 included 40+ new security patches to Macs. You can read all about them over on the company's security site

Microsoft says it discovered a new 'Powerdir' vulnerability lurking in macOS. Powerdir allows "an attacker to bypass the operating system’s Transparency, Consent, and Control (TCC) technology, thereby gaining unauthorized access to a user’s protected data." Fortunately, Apple patched up the issue in macOS Monterey 12.1. 

macOS Monterey 12.1 also included some important upgrades to privacy. The software delivered Apple's communication safety features for kids. You'll find these features in the Messages app, in Siri, in Spotlight, and in Search. 

If you're moving up from macOS Big Sur, you'll also get macOS Monterey 12.0.1's 30+ security patches when you update. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

In addition to those patches, the macOS Monterey update comes with additional security and privacy upgrades.

If you're an Apple Card user, you'll now get a security code that changes regularly to use when you make online transactions. 

Apple's also included a built-in authenticator that's similar to Google Authenticator. This will let you generate verification codes for enhanced sign-in security under your Passwords.

New Mail Privacy Protection helps prevent senders from tracking your Mail activity and there's a new recording indicator in Control Center for apps that are accessing your mic.

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