Like we have reported before, registered developers have been able to get their hands on Mac OS X Lion a few weeks ago. Starting today, all users will be able to download the new operating system from the Mac App Store. If you’re not yet aware of what Lion will include, read on, we’ll fill you in.
Lion includes features that are meant to bring the user experience found on the Mac closer to the one that’s been core to iOS devices for years. It was first announced at the special Mac-related “Back to the Mac” event and shown off in greater detail just over one month ago at this year’s WWDC, Apple’s annual developer-oriented event. Since then, it has generated excitement among consumers, developers and bloggers alike.
For starters, Lion includes possibly the greatest change in usability since Mac OS X’s original release in 2001. The Dock, which has been OS X’s easiest way to launch apps remains, although applications can now be launched just as easily from Launchpad, the Mac version of the iOS Home Screen that displays all installed apps. Furthermore, applications can now be organized into folders inside Launchpad, and uninstalled easily, much like they can on iOS devices today.
Aside from bringing features from iOS, Lion also brings many of its own to the table, including Resume, which allows the computer’s open apps to be memorized once the system is shutdown and immediately re-launched when the computer is booted back up. There’s also AutoSave, which automatically saves the state of files as they’re edited without requiring the user to voluntarily save said file, a feature that can come particularly handy when writing long essays at 4 in the morning.
There’s no time to go over all the features, but you can read about them yourself on Apple’s official site. In all, there are 250 of them, although one should take Apple’s feature counts with a grain of salt. What we can say with certainty is that Lion is the most relevant Mac OS X release in years. If you have $29 to spare, you can grab Lion from the Mac App Store today, after making sure you’re running Mac OS X 10.6.8, which you’re able to download from Software update. Unfortunately, boxed DVD copies won’t be available.
Before you install OS X Lion, you’ll need to update your Mac to OS X 10.6.8 from Software Update. You can read our thorough write-up here on what you should do in order to prepare your Mac for the OS X Lion upgrade.
Download OS X Lion From Mac App Store