Apple’s Trademarks Hint At What macOS 12 Might Be Named

Image via Nanain /

It’s no secret that Apple names its Mac operating system updates after scenic sites of California. Most recently, we had Big Sur, Catalina, and Mojave, and you’d certainly recall earlier versions like Yosemite and Sierra, as well.

While this running theme hints at what future Mac software versions could be called, it’s worth noting that these clues would likely be narrowed down to a batch of names that Apple trademarked back in 2013 and 2014. As 9to5Mac’s Parker Ortolani points out, the trademarks for would-be macOS names have been renewed over the years.

Ortolani notes that recent trademark renewals point at two possible titles for macOS 12: ‘Monterey’ and ‘Mammoth’.

The ‘Monterey’ name, renewed on December 29 last year, is a nod to the city on the rugged central coast of California. It was also referenced through the years by Apple itself; during a demonstration at WWDC 2015, Apple’s software engineering senior VP Craig Federighi described that he was visiting both Monterey and Big Sur. Apple also mentions Monterey from time to time at WWDC presentations, Ortolani adds.

However, the company also freshly renewed the ‘Mammoth’ name, a reference to Mammoth Lakes, on April 29 this year.

As for which of the two would more likely be the name of macOS 12, Ortolani says it could all boil down to how significant the update will be. If it mainly consists of software improvements, macOS 12 might be called Monterey, since the mountainous Big Sur is located within the rugged coastal area of Monterey—so the two are related. Mammoth, as its name already suggests, would be a viable moniker for a massive macOS upgrade.

As we all know, Apple typically hints at future macOS names years ahead at WWDCs in very subtle ways. Well look what I noticed while watching WWDC 2015… just so happens to be Craig planning a trip to Monterey and Big Sur… 👀

— Parker Ortolani (@ParkerOrtolani) June 1, 2021

[via 9to5Mac, cover image via Nanain /]

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