Monday, 18 June 2012

WWDC 2012: Apple OS X Mountain Lion

The WWDC keynote revealed over 200+ features of OS X Mountain Lion and demonstrated a few of them. Mountain Lion is basically a mash up of OS X and iOS, taking the major features of iOS and bringing them to Mac to make OS X a better experience and so that the OS X and iOS platforms come close together. This is the idea Apple has been using since the recent product lineups.

Here are a eleven awesome features of OS X Mountain Lion announced this WWDC:

1. iCloud Integration

iCloud is now deeply integrated into OS X Mountain Lion. When you buy new Mac and configure it during initial boot, it will ask for your Apple ID so that it can configure iCloud, iTunes and the Mac App Store. When iCloud is set up, the Reminders, Notes, Calendar, Messages and other apps linked to your Apple ID will constantly sync across your Apple devices with iCloud set up. So if you make a change on any one device, it will instantly sync the change to all other devices so you are always updated. 

2. Power Nap
Power Nap is a new feature in Mountain Lion which is similar to normal hibernate and sleep, but has some additional benefits. When you put your Mac to sleep, it constantly keeps updating all your applications like Mail, Calendar, Messages and others and downloads software updates and makes backup with Time Capsule when on a power source with the help of Power Nap and when you wake it up, all your apps will be updated and ready to go. During this operation, the Mac remains silent without using any fans and saves energy. 

3. Notifications Center

Mountain Lion now brings with itself Notifications Center, the same feature currently available on iOS. It gives a list of updates from all your apps and use banners to show new notifications, dumping the old fashioned way of pop up notifications. There is also an option to Tweet or do a Facebook update right from the Notifications Center.

4. Reminders and Notes App

OS X Mountain Lion includes Reminders and Notes app which work exactly like on iOS and sync with all your devices through iCloud and helps you to create reminders and notes as the names suggest.

5. Messages

Messages app is derived from and is the same as iMessage on iOS. It just adds Macs to the service enabling you to send messages between your Mac and iOS devices. There is also an option to FaceTime directly from the Messages app. Like Reminders and Notes apps, Messages sync across all your Macs and iOS devices. 

6. Dictation

Dictation, currently available only on the iPhone 4S and soon on the new iPad with iOS 6 has reserved its place in the new OS X. This enables you to dictate text by your voice as the name suggests and the Mac will convert it into text which is really helpful when you are not in the mood of typing. 

7. Airplay Mirroring
OS X Mountain Lion enables you to stream your Mac screen to your HDTV through an Apple TV over WiFi.

8. Game Center

Game Center is now includes with OS X Mountain Lion which enables you to play games with iOS devices and other Macs. It shows leaderboards of your friends and games your friends have and you can challenge each other. In multiplayer games, Game Center chooses random players for you to play with. 

9. Sharing Options, Twitter and Facebook Integration

OS X Mountain Lion has integrated sharing options on most of the pre-installed apps. All you have to do is sign in once and you are ready to go and you can share almost anything with your friends. It enables you to share photos, videos, and other files with Mail, Messages, and AirDrop and send links from Safari. It also enables you to post straight to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, or Vimeo when you want.

Facebook and Twitter integration enables you to post on Facebook and Tweet with the click of a button once you have set up both of your accounts.

10. Gatekeeper

Gatekeeper allows you to set from which sources - Only Mac App Store, Only Mac App Store and identified developer or anywhere should apps be allowed to be installed from. 

11. Safari Updates

Safari now includes a tab view that provides a live view of all your tabs and includes a text field that like Google Chrome's Omnibox, can also be used to search via a search engine like Google and to go to web pages.

I would say that Apple OS X Mountain Lion is a solid update that provides new features that make daily life more easy. OS X Mountain Lion will be available for download for $19.99 this July electronically like OS X Lion from the Mac App Store.