Lion is here. Our own Kahney/Brownlee dynamic duo have written up their own review, but let’s take a moment to find out what other reviewers are saying.
Let’s start, as we should, with the man whose in-depth OS X reviews have been the benchmark for the rest of us for years, Ars Technica’s John Siracusa.
His epic Lion review (19 pages, count ‘em) is well worth a chunk of your time. My favorite quote:
“Apple appears tired of dragging people kicking and screaming into the future; with Lion, it has simply decided to leave without us.”
Lion is, Siracusa concludes simply, “better technology.”
Meanwhile, Darrell Etherington at GigaOm likes the full screen mode in Lion apps, but thinks Apple should have done something more drastic with Finder:
“I’m still not crazy about the Finder redesign for example, and I think Apple missed the opportunity to make some changes to that component of OS X that would’ve really resonated with longtime users.”
Independent blogger Shawn Blanc has a lot to say about the refinements and details he’s encountered in weeks of using the Lion previews, but overall:
“There are many things like this sprinkled all throughout the OS. There are many subtle refinements which, when experienced, you don’t just think ‘I’m glad they added this, because this is cool.’ Instead, you think ‘how is it that OS X never had this before? This is the way it should be.'”
Over at Macworld, the highly respected Jason Snell spelled out some pros and cons:
“After a long period of relative stability on the Mac, Lion is a shock to the system. It’s a radical revision, motivated in part by the vast influx of new Mac users coming to the platform from iOS, that makes the Mac a friendlier computer … On the downside, Launchpad owes a bit too much to the iOS, limiting its utility, and it’s too hard to organize apps. Full-screen apps have potential, but only if developers embrace the format and truly re-invent their interfaces.”
Brian Chen at Wired had a lot of praise, but said Lion was “trying too hard to be iOS”:
“Apple’s visions of a future awash in gesture-based input devices, and the language we’ll use when we get there, are being mapped out in plain view. The price is right.”
So, you’ve heard what the Mac bloggers think, and you’ve heard what we think. Over to you, now: having had a few hours to download, install and play around with Lion, what are your first impressions?