Parallels 15 lets you turn an iPad into a Surface tablet

Credit: Parallels

Launching this week, the latest version of Parallels brings with it improved gaming performance and integration with all the new features that Mac OS Catalina has to offer.

Parallels usually talk gaming when it comes to showing off how much better each iteration of their trademark software is - and this year's Parallels 15 proved no exception. After all, if you're looking to play games on a Mac, Parallels is close to a must-have. And the new version of Parallels is the first to support both DirectX 9, 10 and 11 via Apple's Metal API.

“Parallels made significant investments to support Apple Metal API, so today our customers can enjoy the fastest and most efficient version of Parallels Desktop to date,” said Nick Dobrovolskiy, Senior Vice President, Engineering and Support at Parallels.

Credit: Parallels

As a result, Parallels say the new version of their dual-booting software is able to run many applications and games that didn't work on previous versions. The company also claim that the new version of Parallels offers a more responsive UI, up to 15% faster 3D graphics performance and up to 80% faster Microsoft Office startup times.

Parallels also now supports Bluetooth LE connectivity, making it easier to pair up an Xbox controller and play games using the new Xbox App.

Of course, with Mac OS Catalina on the horizon, Parallels 15 comes ready to emulate the latest beta of Apple's new desktop operating system. When Catalina does arrive, it'll be supported by Parallels both as a host machine and a virtual one. At the moment though, you're just limited to the latter.

Still, if you're keen on making use of some of the newer functions that Catalina offers, such as Sidecar - which lets you use an iPad as a secondary display for your laptop - Parallels will absolutely play along. You can even boot up a VM of Windows 10, drag the window over to your Apple tablet and then enable Windows 10's tablet mode to use your iPad as if it was a Surface tablet - even with the Apple Pen!

Credit: Parallels

For business users, there's also the promise of greater security. The new version of Parallels Desktop for Mac Pro Edition and Business Edition feature a Virtual Platform Trusted module, enabling for additional security feature that previously weren't supported.

Last but not least, Parallels Desktop 15 is also the first version of Parallels that won't be available on a perpetual license. In Australia, the software (in all its variations) is now only available on a 1-year subscription. 

In Australia, Parallels Desktop 15 for Mac is available as an upgrade for AU$71.45/year. New subscribers can nab it for AU$109/year. Parallels Desktop 15 for Mac Pro Edition is slightly pricier at AU$137.45/year for new subscribers.  The Business Pro package is also AU$137.45/year. You can find out more info and sign up for the latest version of Parallels here.

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Fergus Halliday
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