Apple gives sneak peeks of Mac OS X Lion and soon-to-launch Mac App Store

Apple Online StoreApple today gave a sneak peek of Mac OS X Lion, the eighth major release of the world’s most advanced operating system.

Shipping next summer, Lion is inspired by many of iPad’s software innovations. Today’s sneak peek highlighted just a few of Lion’s features, including the Mac App Store, a new way to discover, install and automatically update desktop apps; Launchpad, a new home for all of your Mac apps; system-wide support for full screen apps; and Mission Control, which unifies Exposé, Dashboard, Spaces and full screen apps into an innovative new view of everything running on your Mac, and allows you to instantly navigate anywhere.

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“Lion brings many of the best ideas from iPad back to the Mac, plus some fresh new ones like Mission Control that Mac users will really like,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO, in the press release. “Lion has a ton of new features, and we hope the few we had time to preview today will give users a good idea of where we are headed.”

The Mac App Store brings the revolutionary App Store experience to OS X, making discovering, installing and updating Mac apps easier than ever. Like on iPad, you purchase apps using your iTunes account and they download and install in just one step. App updates are delivered directly through the Mac App Store, so it’s easy to keep all of your apps up to date. The Mac App Store will be available for Snow Leopard within 90 days and will be included in Lion when it ships next summer.

Launchpad makes it easier than ever to find and launch any app. Similar to the Home screen on iPad, you can see all the apps on your Mac elegantly displayed just by clicking the Launchpad icon in the dock. Apps can be organized in any order or grouped into folders, and you can swipe through multiple pages of apps to find the one you want.

Lion includes system-wide support for full screen applications. With Lion, you can enter full screen mode with just one click, switch from one full screen app to another with just a swipe of the trackpad, and swipe back to the desktop to access your multi-window applications.

Mission Control presents you with a unified view of every app and window running on your Mac, so you can instantly navigate anywhere. Mission Control also incorporates the next generation of Exposé, presenting all the windows running on your Mac grouped by application, alongside thumbnails of full screen apps, Dashboard and other Spaces.

Source: Apple Inc.

84 Comments

  1. And as I had been saying all this time, Apple is slowly but clearly moving in the direction of iOS computing. Lion, due in June, will start training desktop Mac users for iOS (gestures, full-screen apps, App Store), so that when first multi-touch keyboardless and mouseless desktop devices start appearing, desktop users will be ready for the transition. By then, major application developers will already have ported their flagship offerings to iOS, and Apple will have matured iOS to the point where feature set will meet full requirements for a heavy-duty desktop OS.

    A few years from now (perhaps no more than two), mouse will no longer be usable with desktop Macs, and keyboard will be only sold as a BTO option.

  2. And as I had been saying all this time, Apple is slowly but clearly moving in the direction of iOS computing. Lion, due in June, will start training desktop Mac users for iOS (gestures, full-screen apps, App Store), so that when first multi-touch keyboardless and mouseless desktop devices start appearing, desktop users will be ready for the transition. By then, major application developers will already have ported their flagship offerings to iOS, and Apple will have matured iOS to the point where feature set will meet full requirements for a heavy-duty desktop OS.

    A few years from now (perhaps no more than two), mouse will no longer be usable with desktop Macs, and keyboard will be only sold as a BTO option.

  3. This sneak peek of Lion is just the tip of the Iceberg.

    Launch Pad, Mission Control, Ignition startup:

    Apple is years ahead of anyone and ALL Apple Products will be seamlessly integrated and interusable, like NOBODY ELSE can make them. Why ? Because they all borrow and lend to each other and NO ONE else has even gotten one of them right to compete, let alone the entire integration of all parts…

    Data and storage and shared access, will be the next advances.

    Mission Control – Launch us to the Moon. Steady as she goes Steve!

  4. This sneak peek of Lion is just the tip of the Iceberg.

    Launch Pad, Mission Control, Ignition startup:

    Apple is years ahead of anyone and ALL Apple Products will be seamlessly integrated and interusable, like NOBODY ELSE can make them. Why ? Because they all borrow and lend to each other and NO ONE else has even gotten one of them right to compete, let alone the entire integration of all parts…

    Data and storage and shared access, will be the next advances.

    Mission Control – Launch us to the Moon. Steady as she goes Steve!

  5. Having used my iPad for six months now (at least two hours/day), I fully understand why Apple is moving iOS features “back to the Mac.” The best way to design the use of a computer is to hide most of its “computerness” behind the curtains, in the background so that we can DO what we want to do with our Macs.

    Go Apple!

    BTW, I’m waiting for iPig.

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