Mac OS X Lion: Mac's Latest Beast, What to Expect

 @ibtimes on July 17 2011 5:46 PM

Apple will release OS X Lion (10.7) this month. From looking at past release dates for other versions of their operating systems, it seems likely that the release will fall in the last week of July, with the possibility of next week. OS 10.3 through 10.6 were all released in the last week of the month, and so it seems this version will be no different.

Last week's expected July 14 release date has left Mac users wondering when Lion will appear. As if a magic trick, consumers are patiently awaiting for [the] Lion to jump through the hoop and show itself.

Apple's Web site states that the new desktop operating system will be here in July, but no date is mentioned. It simply states that Lion will be available by download from the Mac App Store for $29.99.

On June 6, Apple announced that OS X Lion will include more than 250 new features.

Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing stated, The Mac has outpaced the PC industry every quarter for five years running and with OS X Lion we plan to keep extending our lead.

Lion will have some new features such as picture-in-picture zoom, international braille tables in a wide range of languages, iPhoto faces, FaceTime calling from the address book, and social networking incorporated into the address book.

Lion will also showcase the move towards blending mobile and desktop operating systems.

AirDrop will also be featured, which allows for quick and easy wireless file transfers to those around you; the way Bluetooth works. AirDrop will allow peer-to-peer Wi-Fi between participating users without a needed wireless network. No infrastructure is required. It's as simple as 'drag and drop.'

But what makes Lion unique is it centralizes all your content in one place using Expose and the new feature of Mission Control. With a swipe, the computer desktop will zoom out to display opened windows grouped together within an app, thumbnails of the full screen apps and the Dashboard. With just a tap, it will allow you to instantly navigate anywhere.

OS X Lion will also integrate Multi-Touch gestures, some of which are already in effect on earlier OS X operating systems. The Multi-Touch gestures will let users interact with content on the screen.

Also, Lion will feature a Launchpad, similar to the applications folder, but it will be in full-screen view, displaying apps.

Other features will include:

Resume, which brings apps back as they were left when the computer was restarted or quit.

Auto Save, which regularly saves work so you don't have to.

Versions, which records history of documents as you create them, providing an easier way to browse, copy, and paste.

For those who purchase an Apple between the past date of June 6, 2011, and Lion's pending release, will be eligible to receive a Mac OS X Lion upgrade, at no additional charge. And those who are waiting for the new phantom Macbook Air models to arrive can expect to see Lion on the latest model.

Apple has been in the hot seat recently for not being more direct with its product release dates, and in regards to the new Air, the arrival date has yet to become public.

The highly anticipated next gen Macbook Air is rumored to feature Intel Sandy Bridge chips, which fit in the i3, i5 and i7 processors. The presumed ultra-thin MacBook Air has been rumored to coincide with the release of OS X Lion, but the release date is lingering and Apple has remained tight lipped.

Sandy Bridge chips not only create a faster computer, but a more power-efficient computer as well. The latest Intel Sandy Bridge chips are said to be faster than the current Sandy Bridge chips used in the Samsung Series 9. Currently, the Air is built with the Intel Core 2 Duo chips.

The latest Mac Operating System (10.6), Snow Leopard, was released in August of 2009, and two years before that saw the release of OS 10.5, Leopard (2007), and in 2005 the OS 10.4 Tiger was released.

Apple is scheduled to make an announcement on July 19 5 p.m. ET regarding its financial results for the third fiscal quarter.

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