Slated for release this summer, not much was known about OS X Lion and what new features it would bring besides some scattered details on how it meant to integrate the "best ideas" from iOS. Today Apple released the first OS X Lion Developer Preview giving us some hands-on action on what's coming next for the Mac.
Apple wants to take advantage of multi-touch trackpads and peripherals, marrying that functionality with software features like LaunchPad that turns your desktop into a set of swipeable home screens, similar to what you have on the iPad and iPhone. Mission Control is another actionable feature using touch that unifies ExposÃ©, Dashboard, Spaces to give you a birdâs eye view of every app and window running on your machine.
Apple is also giving some weight to the notion of running applications in "full-screen" mode, a multi-tasking approach Windows users have grown accustomed to for a long time, though OS X's take will go in conjunction with the aforementioned features.
Other major features that have been announced and are certainly worth mentioning:
- Versions, which automatically saves successive versions of your document as you create it, and gives you an easy way to browse, edit and even revert to previous versions.
- Resume, which conveniently brings your apps back exactly how you left them when you restart your Mac or quit and relaunch an app.
- Auto Save, which automatically saves your documents as you work.
- a new version of Mail, with a widescreen layout inspired by the iPad; more powerful search; and support for Microsoft Exchange 2010;
- AirDrop, a remarkably simple way to copy files wirelessly from one Mac to another with no setup;
- an all new FileVault, that provides high performance full disk encryption for local and external drives, and the ability to wipe data from your Mac instantaneously.
- Mac OS X Lion Server, which makes setting up a server easier than ever and adds support for managing Mac OS X Lion, iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices.