Mac OS X Lion sneak peek: Mac App Store, Launchpad, Mission Control, and more

Apple took their best ideas from Mac OS X and brought it to the iPhone. Then they took their best ideas from the iPhone and brought it to iPad. And now they plan to bring their best applicable ideas back to the Mac with their eighth major release of the world’s most advanced operating system.

Mac OS X Lion is slated to arrive in summer 2011.

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Here’s a sneak peek at just a few of Mac OS X Lion’s new features:

The Mac App Store:
    – Just like the App Store for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. So it’s as easy to find and download Mac apps as it is to add your favorite magazine to iPad or a new game to iPod touch. You can browse Mac apps by category, such as games, productivity, music, and more. Or do a quick search for something specific. Read developer descriptions and user reviews. Flip through screenshots. When you find an app you like, click to buy it.
    – The Mac App Store revolutionizes the way applications are installed on a computer — it happens in one step. Enter the same iTunes password you use to buy apps on iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch. And within seconds, your new app flies to your Dock, ready to go.
    – You can install Mac apps on every Mac you use and even download them again. This is especially convenient when you buy a new Mac and want to load it with apps you already own.
    – Developers are always improving their apps. That’s why the Mac App Store keeps track of your apps and tells you when updates are available. Update one app at a time or all of them at once, and you’ll always have the latest versions.
    – You don’t have to wait until next summer, the Mac App Store is coming soon for Mac OS X Snow Leopard.

Launchpad: A home for your apps that gives you instant access — iPad style. Just click the Launchpad icon in your Dock. Your open windows fade away, replaced by a full-screen display of all the apps on your Mac. It takes just a swipe to see multiple pages of apps, and you can arrange apps any way you like by dragging an app icon to a new location or by grouping apps in folders. Downloaded an app from the App Store? Your new app automatically appears on the Launchpad, ready to blast off.

• Full-screen apps: On Apple’s revolutionary iPad, every app is displayed full screen, with no distractions, and there’s one easy way to get back to all your other apps. Mac OS X Lion does the same for your desktop. You can bring an app to full screen with one click, switch to another full-screen app with a swipe of your MacBook trackpad, Magic Mouse, or Magic Trackpad and swipe back to the desktop to access your multi-window apps. And systemwide support for full-screen apps makes them bigger and more immersive so you can concentrate on every detail of your work.

Mission Control: A powerful feature that provides you with a comprehensive view of what’s running on your Mac. It gives you a bird’s-eye view of everything — including Exposé, Spaces, Dashboard, and full-screen apps— all in one place. With a simple swipe gesture, your desktop zooms out to Mission Control. There you can see your open windows grouped by app, thumbnails of your full-screen apps, Dashboard, and even other Spaces, arranged in a unified view. And you can get to anything you see on Mission Control with just one click. Making you the master of all you survey.

See screenshots of the features above here and watch Apple CEO Steve Jobs Mac OS X Lion presentation (starts at 54:15) here.

56 Comments

  1. OK, but underwhelming. Hopefully, Apple is holding back some cool enhancemenets until closer to the release. Notably, NO under-the-hood improvement were revealed.

  2. I don’t launch apps much, I launch documents more. It’s getting harder to launch documents with the intended apps though. Thankfully I can still drag them to an icon on the doc or an alias.

    Apps that don’t fit on the dock are categorized by functionality and live as aliases on category subfolders of an app folder that lies on my dock. Dragging docs to them has become more difficult too.

    Apps that don’t reside on the Applications folder don’t work as well as before when documents are assigned to be opened by those apps. Always Open With… fails to stick on this dumber OS. Furthermore, aliases of documents that have been resaved tend to lose their app bindings too. All in all, hassles have increased.

    But if you have only a dozen apps and like to swipe then I suppose it’s good. If not, take it in the neck like a good fan boy. As far as I’m concerned it’s long ago ceased to be about making things easier for users and more about making it easier for Apple to get control and generate revenue.

    At this rate Apple might eventually find itself on the wrong end of another 1984 commercial. Only problem is, the competition is too stupid.

  3. I don’t launch apps much, I launch documents more. It’s getting harder to launch documents with the intended apps though. Thankfully I can still drag them to an icon on the doc or an alias.

    Apps that don’t fit on the dock are categorized by functionality and live as aliases on category subfolders of an app folder that lies on my dock. Dragging docs to them has become more difficult too.

    Apps that don’t reside on the Applications folder don’t work as well as before when documents are assigned to be opened by those apps. Always Open With… fails to stick on this dumber OS. Furthermore, aliases of documents that have been resaved tend to lose their app bindings too. All in all, hassles have increased.

    But if you have only a dozen apps and like to swipe then I suppose it’s good. If not, take it in the neck like a good fan boy. As far as I’m concerned it’s long ago ceased to be about making things easier for users and more about making it easier for Apple to get control and generate revenue.

    At this rate Apple might eventually find itself on the wrong end of another 1984 commercial. Only problem is, the competition is too stupid.

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