26 Cool New Features You’ll Find in Lion



Mac OS X Lion has more than 250 new features, and Apple has thoughtfully put together a list of all of them.

Here are some interesting nuggets plucked from that list…


  • Has Search Tokens like the ones we saw in the Mail demo at WWDC
  • Will finally offer to merge two folders of the same name when you try to combine them
  • Has a new All My Files feature, which “gathers all your files no matter where they’re located”. Will it work a bit like Launchpad?


  • Shows new Day and Year views
  • Has a “Heat map” which shows your availability at a glance


  • Can now cope with rich text
  • Can convert workflows from one type to another (i.e., convert a system Service to a print plug-in)
  • Comes with a bunch of new actions

System stuff

  • Lion includes “a built-in restore partition”
  • Recovery mode lets you use Safari to look stuff up online
  • Every virtual desktop can have its own wallpaper image
  • New “Low-power wake” mode allows the computer to wake up for stuff like file sharing and backups, without activating the monitor or USB devices
  • New Privacy pane in System Preferences
  • “Clean start” avoids Resume, so you can start from a fresh desktop
  • When using Screen Sharing, you can log in with your Apple ID. You don’t need to have a user account on the target computer
  • You can drag items out of the Spotlight results list
  • Auto Saved documents can be manually locked to prevent further changes; all documents are automatically locked two weeks after they were last edited
  • Use gestures inside Quick Look
  • You can copy-and-paste between different Versions of the same document
  • Resize windows from any edge, not just the bottom-right corner

QuickTime Player

  • Lets you merge clips together
  • And rotate clips
  • Shows clicks while recording a screencast

Text stuff

  • iOS-style auto-correction comes to the Mac
  • Hold down a letter on your keyboard for quick access to accented characters
  • New formatting bar and inline search in TextEdit

Spotted anything else in the list you like the look of? Let us know in the comments.

  • guest

    I want that wallpaper. help

  • Support 18inc

    NEW SPACE DESK TOP BACKGROUND! Whoa! Insert insane whistling and freaking out…sorry, the pink was getting to me.

  • Michael

    It’s a picture of Andromeda (and a very nicely edited one at that). Try Google maybe?

  • cleversoap

    I know it’s a minor addition but I use spotlight for damn near everything (I was raised on an amalgamation of ls, find, and grep) and the ability to drag from the results is probably going to be my favourite part of the update.

  • Stuart Otterson

    Often, it’s the little changes and features that get overlooked in a new OS update that makes the biggest improvements over time.

  • guest

    Thanks, made one myself…

  • Adam Schneider

    I am using safari and using reader to read this article. Does this come with Safari 5.0.5 on Snow Leopard.

  • Tom

    With Lion taking full use of the new trackpads in macbooks, mac prod and air. How will the old macbook’s and macbook pros take use of this function.

  • Stuart Otterson

    As a person who owns said old MacBook Pro, they won’t be able to use these functions. They’ve only ever been able to do the 2 finger scrolling and 2 fingers to right click. :(

  • Wind_stopper

    Sure, Lion looks nice and is probably a decent OS. However, in order to enjoy Lion one will have to install SnowLeopard first. So, I need one OS to install another (more advanced) OS? That is pretty annoying, and there might be software for which one doesn’t need a physical method of install, but for an OS? That is a reason for me to NOT upgrade to Lion, unless Apple comes out with the option to purchase Lion on DVD – or burn the AppStore image to DVD at the least. 

  • Tom

    Thats gutting. Might just buy a magic mouse. Or possibly we will be able to set up short cut keys for some features.

  • beewhy

    nice dude