This weekend broke news that Apple was already hard at work on OS X 10.8, so it would be natural to assume that in the next version of OS X, Cupertino will bring even more iOS functionality to their desktop operating system: stuff like Airplay and iMessages.
Nope. But don’t be too disappointed. AirPlay and iMessages are reportedly coming to OS X 10.7 Lion, instead.
Developers running iOS 5 on their Apple mobile devices have been able to fiddle with iCloud since shortly after it was announced at WWDC in June. However, without iCloud on their Mac as well, they to sync your bookmarks, calendars, photo stream, and documents. Until now!
With OS X 10.7 Lion now available on the Mac App Store, a lot of people will be upgrading their Macs today. Even though the install process makes Lion the easiest upgrade yet, though, there’s a right way to install Lion to your machine, and a wrong way.
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OS X Lion is the eighth major release of Mac OS X, and it brings to the table several ideas from iOS, like Launchpad (a matrix display of installed applications, similar to the iOS Home Screen — and the Mac App Store) which is being used to deliver the new OS.
Despite the iOS inspiration, Lion’s not a huge shift from previous versions, and it won’t turn your Mac into a faux iOS device. Rather, it borrows some of iOS’s best ideas and uses them to polish the core Mac experience, making Lion the most attractive, cohesive, user-friendly and idiot-proof OS X yet.
It’s a big accomplishment overall. Lion not only looks cleaner and nicer, it fixes a surprising number of long-time niggles. But it also adds some nice new features, and while there are some changes that will cause consternation, like reverse scrolling, almost everything added is for the better.
The question isn’t whether you should spend $29 on Lion, because that’s just a no-brainer. No, the real question is: now that we’re in the post-PC age, how will Lion change the way you use your Mac, and how does it set the stage for the Mac of the future?