Meet OS X Mountain Lion
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is bringing some of the most popular features for iPhone and iPad to the Mac with its new Mountain Lion operating system, which could launch at this week’s Worldwide Developers Conference.
Last year’s OS X Lion, which officially launched at WWDC, was Apple’s first attempt to merge some of the features that made its iOS so popular with its computer software, for the first time creating apps for desktops.
This year’s OS X Mountain Lion adopts iOS 5 features like Messages, Notification Center, Game Center, AirPlay Mirroring, and more, while also introducing some all new feature, including priority VIP mail, a way to quickly enable and disable notification banners and alerts, and a cool new function called iCloud Tabs, which syncs a list of tabs running on Mac Safari and iOS Safari between Macs, iPads, iPhones, and iPod touches. According to 9to5Mac, these new features are likely to pop up in iOS 6 as well.
Apple has already released a sneak peek of Mountain Lion on its online store, saying it will launch this summer, though not specifying whether its impending introduction will take place at this week’s WWDC.
According to the sneak peek video, a conversation begun on an iMac can be picked up on any other Apple device running updated software using the Messages app already available for iOS devices. Reminders and Notes, also available on iOS, will debut on Mountain Lion. Lists created in the apps will automatically be pushed to all Internet-connected devices. Notification Center will also push to all devices, while AirPlay Mirroring will allow users to wirelessly share their Mac screens on their TVs using Apple TV.
Because Apple is also expected to launch a new Mac line at this week’s WWDC, the new OS may also come with Retina Display support — that is, if Apple decides to make the wildly popular high-definition displays (introduced last year on the iPhone 4S and this year on the third generation iPad) available for its updated desktops and/or notebooks.
The anticipation ahead of today’s WWDC kick-off is palpable with so many rumors swirling about potential updates and product launches. The conference’s opening keynote address is scheduled for 10 a.m. PDT (that’s 1 p.m. EDT). The keynote is the major platform for any major summer launches, though March and October also play host to many new product releases. Stay tuned to Wall St. Cheat Sheet for all the latest news out of WWDC.