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Apple Gives Mac OS X a Dose of iOS with Mountain Lion

By - Source: Apple | B 27 comments
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Despite the fact that Apple just released OS X Lion less than a year ago (seven months, if you were looking for a more precise period of time), the company has been hard at work on the next build of Mac OS X and today released a preview of OS X Mountain Lion for developers. This version of OS X drops the 'Mac' from the title, which is the first big hint at where Apple is headed with its desktop OS. Mountain Lion further bridges the gap between Cupertino's mobile and desktop computers with more than a hint of iOS appearing in this latest version.

Apple started mixing iOS with Mac OS X with Lion and that's continuing through with Mountain Lion. The most notable example of this is the presence of iOS features such as Game Center, Notifications, and iMessage (which arrives in the form of an iChat revamp called Messages). Notifications is something that Growl-lovers will recognize, and provides users with alerts from every corner of their Mac, from system updates to Messages to third party applications. Messages is the newest version of Apple's iChat app and supports iMessage. It also pools IM, text messaging, and message history into a brand new interface, though, so while it is technically an updated iChat, it looks completely different.

AirPlay Mirroring is another major feature of OS X Mountain Lion, and, again, it should be very familiar to iOS users already making use of AirPlay. This feature will allow you to mirror what’s on your Mac's display and send it over to your HDTV via Apple TV. Supporting up to 720p, AirPlay Mirroring means you can watch movies or TV shows and play games without that cramped feeling that comes with performing such activities on a computer. It's worth noting that Apple has said AirPlay Mirroring will only work for Macs with second-generation Intel Core processors.

Apple is also taking OS X to the iCloud with this build. Mountain Lion will use your Apple ID to automatically set up Contacts, Mail, Calendar, Messages, FaceTime and Find My Mac. These will continuously sync across all of your Apple devices and is the reason Messages, for example, will be able to show you a combined history of IM, SMS, and message history for each of your contacts. There's also a new API for developers to make document-based apps work with iCloud.

Lastly, there's Gatekeeper, which is a security setting that allows you to set your computer so that it will only accept software downloaded from the Mac App Store, or from the Mac App Store and identified developers. This setting can also be switched off completely, allowing you to download applications from anywhere. In case you were wondering, an identified developer is a developer that has signed their apps prior to distribution. Apple says Gatekeeper's default setting will be for Mac App Store apps and apps by identified developers only. This security setting will probably be the most useful for people sharing a computer with (or setting up a new computer for) less tech savvy people.

Mountain Lion has over 100 new features, and these are just a handful of them. If you're eager to know more, the OS has been released as a developer preview, so you can check it out for yourself. If that doesn't interest you, Engadget has a great in-depth preview of Mountain Lion. OS X Mountain Lion is scheduled for release this summer.

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  • -2 Hide
    EDVINASM , February 17, 2012 8:15 AM
    Lion, Mountain Lion, Magic Mouse, Time Capsule.. Have to love Apple for these :D 
  • -4 Hide
    Anonymous , February 17, 2012 8:42 AM
    wow. so the bigger's feature of this new release OS" it has a notable name" Mountain Lion" I bet the next release if they aiming the market at china. they probably would name it. the Mountain Lion and the crouching leopard"
  • 4 Hide
    Anonymous , February 17, 2012 8:48 AM
    As long as the upgrade doesn't cause crashes on my Mac like it did on my iPad.
  • Display all 27 comments.
  • 3 Hide
    molo9000 , February 17, 2012 8:54 AM
    Dropping the Mac name is weird.... Many people already call it "OS ten" or "OS X" (and some people get into fervent debates wether calling it "X" instead of "ten" is acceptable), but I don't see the point of dropping the Mac name.
  • -1 Hide
    memadmax , February 17, 2012 9:09 AM
    Call it "Brand X"..... or the "OS for dummies"...... oooh I know.... It's kinda long but: "The OS for un-serious computing...... for dummies".... Yea, there we go....
  • 3 Hide
    memadmax , February 17, 2012 9:12 AM
    Ooooh, more: "The hippy OS".... or "They were high when they built this thing", or "Don't bother doing anything with it OS"... Hey I know: "It tracks ur every move and you have absolutely no privacy because you sold ur soul to the devil..... OS".... Hey, I like THAT one....
  • 0 Hide
    g4114rd0 , February 17, 2012 9:45 AM

    Coming down the Mountain, the first Hackintosh on 10.8 beta is 0n the way.
  • 0 Hide
    annymmo , February 17, 2012 10:07 AM
    I like the unification of the desktop and iOS.
    Once the OS is the same for Mac laptops and pads, techies can finally get some ammo against the stupid 'pads are different, not computers' crowd.
  • 2 Hide
    d-isdumb , February 17, 2012 11:01 AM
    Don't like it and especially don't trust or like the cloud.
    "Apple is also taking OS X to the iCloud with this build. Mountain Lion will use your Apple ID to automatically set up Contacts, Mail, Calendar, Messages, FaceTime and Find My Mac. These will continuously sync across all of your Apple devices and is the reason Messages"
    As far as Facebook goes, not ever going to happen on my Mac or any other computer I have.
  • 1 Hide
    coreym72 , February 17, 2012 11:01 AM
    I find it ironic that Tim Cook is on the board of directors for Nike. Apple seems to be Heaven's Gate. Just ask Marshall Applewhite while viewing OSX wallaper.
  • 0 Hide
    d-isdumb , February 17, 2012 11:02 AM
    My Bad, it says Facetime, not Facebook. Still don't like it.
  • 3 Hide
    silentbobdc , February 17, 2012 11:19 AM
    I wonder if they remembered to mention one of those "over 100 new features" is that
    Quote:
    ...support for a wide range of Apple's products from 2007 and 2008 are being dropped regardless of whether they include a Core 2 Duo processor.
    . Hmmm, you get to pay for a service pack (which are free on windows) that could help drive your home computer into obsolescence. At least it will help apple sell more new overpriced computers with that wonderful planned obsolescence feature built right in.

    For the record you can run windows 7 on any pc with a 1ghz or higher processor and 1-2GB (for 32 and 64 bit respectively) of ram.
  • 0 Hide
    t_wilson , February 17, 2012 11:33 AM
    I'm glad I don't use /like OS X, although I'm not liking where Windows 8 is headed either.
  • 1 Hide
    freggo , February 17, 2012 12:21 PM
    memadmaxCall it "Brand X"..... or the "OS for dummies"...... oooh I know.... It's kinda long but: "The OS for un-serious computing...... for dummies".... Yea, there we go....


    Would not go there !
    After all, the Apple OS is closely related to Linux !

  • -2 Hide
    Anonymous , February 17, 2012 12:40 PM
    Whats next, Mountain Leopard?
  • 0 Hide
    gwwerner , February 17, 2012 1:33 PM
    Reading about Gatekeeper has me wondering if Apple will eventually take away the ability to turn it off. Then you would have to jailbreak your mac!
  • 1 Hide
    ap3x , February 17, 2012 1:45 PM
    memadmaxCall it "Brand X"..... or the "OS for dummies"...... oooh I know.... It's kinda long but: "The OS for un-serious computing...... for dummies".... Yea, there we go....

    freggoWould not go there !After all, the Apple OS is closely related to Linux !


    Yep, it is a combination of FreeBSD and NetBSD with the Mac kernel. NextStep just developed a really nice interface for it. If you open up the terminal, it is all Unix all the time from that point on. I compiled Linux source code code for some applications with gcc on my Mac because I needed some of the tools for my job. Now there is a recompiled Linux app repository for OSX. Just another troll talking about something he has never really used.
  • 0 Hide
    molo9000 , February 17, 2012 1:47 PM
    silentbobdcI wonder if they remembered to mention one of those "over 100 new features" is that . Hmmm, you get to pay for a service pack (which are free on windows) that could help drive your home computer into obsolescence. At least it will help apple sell more new overpriced computers with that wonderful planned obsolescence feature built right in. For the record you can run windows 7 on any pc with a 1ghz or higher processor and 1-2GB (for 32 and 64 bit respectively) of ram.

    I want to see a Windows service pack that comes with a bunch of features like that.

    The no longer supported Macs are all machines with really crummy graphics cards. Either old Intel integrated graphics (GMA950, X3100) or ATI mobile cards from 2006.
    I bet you can still install 10.8 on those machines if you really want to.

    freggoWould not go there !After all, the Apple OS is closely related to Linux !

    OS X is not related to Linux. OS X is related to BSD. Both Linux and OS X are unix-like systems, but that's the only relationship.
    (OS X is actually "real" UNIX, because it is UNIX-certified)

    But you are sort of right. It's unix-like nature makes it a good choice for "serious computing"... whatever that means.
  • 1 Hide
    ap3x , February 17, 2012 1:48 PM
    memadmaxOoooh, more: "The hippy OS".... or "They were high when they built this thing", or "Don't bother doing anything with it OS"... Hey I know: "It tracks ur every move and you have absolutely no privacy because you sold ur soul to the devil..... OS".... Hey, I like THAT one....


    Lol, in today's Wall Street Journal

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204880404577225380456599176.html

    An you guys talk about Apple. Google is actually using coding tricks to track phones that they did not event make.
  • 1 Hide
    ap3x , February 17, 2012 2:23 PM
    silentbobdcI wonder if they remembered to mention one of those "over 100 new features" is that . Hmmm, you get to pay for a service pack (which are free on windows) that could help drive your home computer into obsolescence. At least it will help apple sell more new overpriced computers with that wonderful planned obsolescence feature built right in. For the record you can run windows 7 on any pc with a 1ghz or higher processor and 1-2GB (for 32 and 64 bit respectively) of ram.



    First of all, Windows service packs include a bunch of fixes, not new applications, not UI improvements, not back end features. Secondly, Apple only charges $29 dollars for their updates for 1 machine and 79.99 for a Family 5 pack. Windows 7 Ultimate (which is comparable) retails for over $250.00 and over $175 for 1 machine OEM version.
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