OS X (10.8) Mountain Lion: Unifying the Computing Experience

Within a year of Apple’s release of Lion (Mac OS X 10.7), they’re preparing to unleash Mountain Lion – providing even more of an integrated experience for those people who rely heavily on iOS devices (or, as I like to call ‘em: the gateway drugs). If you take the time to watch the teaser video that’s been posted to their web site already, you’ll likely be struck with anticipation, trepidation, or envy.

I’m excited. My mom is consternated. Windows users are lashing out with outmoded arguments already.

OS X (10.8) Mountain Lion - Image, Courtesy of Apple

You can’t deny it, though: for Mac owners, there will soon be an array of convenient features floating at their fingertips. Instead of making OS X more iOS-like in operation, Apple is bringing the best tools and features to the desktop without forcing a paradigm shift in usability. This is a stark contrast to what’s expected from the competition (with Windows 8 purportedly bifurcating the user experience between Aero and Metro – and doing so in a haphazard fashion).

Again, the Mac is not turning into an iPad.

If you have an iOS device today (in conjunction with Mac OS X), you can start test driving Messages (an updated version of iChat). If this doesn’t kill the idea of voicemail, nothing will. You can send a quick text, image, or video to any one of your Messages contacts, and they’ll receive it in their own Message client – whether that’s on OS X or any registered iOS device. Maybe one day we’ll see this communications system interoperating with other platforms, but not if it remains a value-added service which further separates Apple’s offerings from the competition (mobile or desktop).

So, what else is new – that we know of?

  • Deeper iCloud integration (including automatic synching processes)
  • Reminders (just like in iOS)
  • Notifications (an iOS-esque center, plus system-level “Growl” popups)
  • Notes (which can be pinned to the desktop like in days of yore)
  • Share Sheets (apparently, Apple’s excited about making things convenient)
  • Game Center, Everywhere (but I thought there were no games for “the Mac”?)
  • AirPlay Mirroring (wireless beaming of the desktop to a TV)
  • Gatekeeper (keeping users from harmful downloads, letting them decide)

The Mountain Lion OS update isn’t just for “the Mac,” though. This revision is staged to be sold to complete one’s entire Apple computing lifestyle – sewing together disparate data management experiences between mobile and desktop environments. So, if you don’t like Apple – I’m not sure why you’d bother to have read this far?

What do people in my community think?

Alex Terek:

It should be a free update, like windows updates…

Windows updates aren’t free – they’re more expensive. Windows Vista’s update (Windows 7) costs about half as much as a new Mac mini. Now, if you’re saying that Windows 7 is a completely different OS compared to Windows Vista, then so is Mountain Lion to Lion. Or, if you’re saying that Windows service packs are free, then so are OS X point revisions. Argument 110% nullified.

Nate Johnson:

looks like apple really is going down hill they are bringing ios to mac talk about lame if i wanted to play games id play my pc ps3 or xbox 360 not a mac seriously mac is lame and really uncompatible with most programs

It seems that Nate’s computer lacks as many punctuation keys as he does logic. Apple’s been a consistent performer in the marketplace, going uphill (not downhill). Seems there are a tremendous amount of shortsighted geeks who fail to see that a smartphone is every bit of a “gaming computer” as a traditional PC. Game consoles are evolving to entertainment stations, too. I’m not sure what “really uncompatible with most programs” means, but I could probably say that Windows programs don’t work well on OS X (outside of a virtual machine or Boot Camp, that is).

Ronald Boadi:

Seems all they have done is bundle a load of apps you could have just downloaded?

Yes and no. Yes, these types of apps could be cobbled together. No, a series of cobbled-together apps doesn’t create an experience Apple’s customers have come to expect from Apple.

Man M:

Personally I think they are going the wrong way. Simplifying desktops to phone level? meh… I can’t wait for a day when I can have proper IDE tools on tablets.

They’re not forcing a mobile usability model. They’re making it easier to manage the data, regardless of your platform (so long as it’s in the Apple universe). Microsoft would be nuts not to be doing the same thing. That, and “proper” appears to be an extremely relative and bigoted term.

Joshua Cloutier (a Gnomie):

Lion OS was a great starter for integrating iOs features… now with the integration of iOS 5 features it makes for a more organized platform for continuing application support.

That’s the idea. Make the actual device(s) / hardware melt into the background.

Howard Coldham (a Gnomie):

I think it is a bit of a let down for people without iOS devices as it centers heavily on mobile device integration. Ignoring that as I am sure the majority of Mac users have iOS devices, I think that it looks great but needs to be priced correctly (As cheap as a Lion upgrade would be perfect) as at face value it does not look like much of an update.

Pricing hasn’t been announced, but I’d assume it’d be a $30 comprehensive license. I agree with you, too: I’d like to see FaceTime and Messages go cross-platform (like QuickTime, iTunes, iCloud, Bonjour, and Safari). Maybe that’ll come when Apple’s finished fleshing out the issues within their own realm? If they released something before it was ready for prime time, that’d go against their ethos.

Alex Pierro (a Gnomie):

It’s okay for Apple to release new versions of their OS, but is necessary? I know there have been some fairly large changes from version to version, but I really don’t see them as “true” upgrades. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to see something new, but Apple needs to come up with something wild and crazy from me to upgrade again. If they keep with the digital download, I hope that it will stay for a long while. I like things simple and Apple has provided that, but again, do we really need to see a new update every year?

Depends on what you want and need. If you use an iOS device, this series of updates would be borderline “essential.” If you’re not on iOS, I’m not sure it’s as interesting of an update. The AirPlay Mirroring feature could drive up the sales of Apple TV devices, if only for conference rooms. It’s possible that there are several underlying changes that aren’t “shiny” (or marketing-speak friendly). Apple hasn’t shown its full hand yet.

Claudiu Ioan (a Gnomie):

I think that even though its a slow transition we can see that Apple is moving towards iOS integration which is a good thing as long as they keep a way for the power user to be able to tweak his system to as he pleases.

OS X has always been more “tweakable” than Windows. Pop open a terminal window and have at it. ;) If you need a place to start, my recommendation has always been Mac OS X Hints.

Your thoughts?

Article Written by

Chris has consistently expressed his convictions and visions outright, supplying practical information to targeted audiences: media agencies, business owners, technology consumers, software and hardware professionals, et al. He remains a passionate personality in the tech community-at-large. He's a geek.

  • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

    Great article Chris!  I really like the integration of iOS but not making OS X mobile *cough* Windows *cough*

    • http://chris.pirillo.com/ Chris Pirillo

      No comment. :)

      • Anonymous

        Windows 8 is trying hard….but still it will lack that OOHPH!  Factor….in OS X Mountain Lion.

        • jS

          it’s just that apple is putting mobile os FEATURES on the desktop,
          while microsoft is /ingeniously/ putting mobile os USER INTERFACE on the desktop. /s

  • Anonymous

    This has to be a great move on Apple’s part considering integration.  Google could also do integration with Chromium OS and Android, Windows 7/8 to Windows Phone 7 & Xbox 360.  The integration is the future, and however small or large we need the cross-platform usage.  Also Chris, I use FaceTime between iOS and my Mac, so it’s technically Cross-Platform (however I don’t know your qualifications for cross-platform as we could have separate definitions.).  Mountain Lion looks promising, and with the free download of Messages for Lion…it builds hype and could encourage sales even faster.  Smart marketing on Apple’s part.

  • Furquan101

    Well I’m annoyed. I have the original macbook air and it isn’t compatible. Now I probably won’t get an ipad and now save up for a brand new macbook air. 4 years old isn’t that old. Apple expect people to buy a brand new laptop every 4 years is annoying. My processor isn’t that bad 1.8ghz Intel core 2 duo

  • Carlton Pecot Jr.

    Nice Article!

  • Stan Zapata

    I like the idea of simplifying the experience and making better what’s already built, but I’m not sure if I really need this update anytime soon.

  • http://raphaellove.com Raphael Love

    Ok I may be approaching this from a  very simplistic perspective, but the changes are interesting and could open many other integration doors that we aren’t currently aware of. I just hope that this does not provide some of the challenges, (Though small in my case) that IOS5 (Calls that dont work unless speaker phone is turned on) and ipad/ipod touch/iphone printing natively are currently.

    I guess we all shall see!

  • Anonymous

    Lets hope its more stable than lion, still a great upgrade though!

  • Muk546

    we are only on 10.7.3 this has been the fastest release with the least features however if its $10-$30 bucks then its ok it would be very nice if they made it free like they did with iPhone os (iOS) for ipod touch (way back in the day)

  • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

    i was looking forward to this article, thank you chris :)

    • Anonymous

      Looks like you don’t even know how to comment properly…..

      • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

        atleast i don’t use 13 periods after a sentence ;)

  • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

    wow dude, what excellent writing skills i see many “new words” for which i had to pull up my dictionary app :D, i would say language skills are important no matter what lang u speak.

  • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

    woah, a lot of negative comments and i would say short sighted ness, i welcome this upgrade with   great enthusiasm.

  • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

    hey also thank you for the link to mac os x hints

  • Anonymous

    Okay here is one news I wanna share Around Summer 2013…OS 11 is coming out for those you think that its high time they leave the OS X framework..as far as mountain lion goes its just another step towards….merging MAC and iPad experience. I believe all the features of Mountain Lion could have been achieved with a single update. But instead Apple is unnecessarily showcasing it as another OS…..hmm…..I miss you Steve….these guys are starting to ruin the palace you created already and its less than a year since you left for heaven!

    • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

      lol, read n learn i would say!

    • http://www.bharatkumargupta.com/ Bharat Kumar Gupta

      one more things, its not just “steve”, its apple(as a team)

  • Jorin Cowley

    Thanks for the great article Chris!

  • http://www.mikeseth.tk/ Mike Seth

    It doesn’t have to be free. Amazing features like those = I’ll pay $29. … it’s just $29. Not a big deal. 

    Remember, there is still a long way to go before Mountain Lion is released.

  • http://www.mikeseth.ca/ Mike Seth

    Great article! Debatable but a nice read.

  • http://twitter.com/TMStreetAnalyst Main Street Analyst

    As always, great article.

  • http://twitter.com/abacnok Ernest Koncaba

    Personally, I don’t see any down sid eto any R&D in any system, be it Windows or Apple. If they stop doing R&D, that is the time to start being concerned, because that would show a decline in the company to improve on their product. So, I say, suck it up and wait for it to happen, THENM voice any complaints you may have about the new update.

  • GregoryMattJackson

    Thank for insight, Appee marketing move a good one.

  • http://www.anthonyguidetti.com/ Anthony Guidetti

    I think this is a great idea for consumers. Unifying the experience between phone to computer takes away confusion and brings familiarity. I think it’s great Microsoft is doing the same as well.

  • Spid

    I completely agree with you Chris and here are my thoughts:
    (Sorry for spelling, English is not my first language)

    1) User Experience to drive sales:

    By bringing some of the iOS features, relatively simpler than Desktop versions, they also bring some user experience to make it simpler, as well as driving sales by saying: If you know how to use your iPhone or your iPad, you’re ready to use a MacBookPro or an iMac. It’s actually very smart move.

    2) The OS X and iOS convergence:

    Now it’s perfectly clear, we can see where Apple’s going (if it wasn’t already the case with Lion for some of us :)). I have no doubt we will see a merge between OS X and iOS in the future… Seriously, what are we missing on iOS, even today?

    a- A kind of File Manager with iFinder and Airdrop to easily and seamlessly exchange files between devices. Apple already did make Finder simpler on Lion…. by removing the Library folder, almost every notion of system files/folders for the user… 
    In Apple mind, the user doesn’t care about the system, it should “just work” and the user doesn’t care to know where his/her files are, as long he/she can find them easily and quickly. So the only missing thing in iOS 6/7 would be a iFinder (and/or better Spotlight) to have access to your file without going through iTunes files system.

    b- XCode? The day you can start developing for a device directly from the device, you don’t need anything else. I wouldn’t be surprise they would release an “iCode” application for the iPad, to develop application in an even simpler way than now… Rethink about “how to build an app” and redesign the tool directly for the iPad. It will be so easier than everyone will wish to have it for OS X then… the same way we did like the Mail, Contact and iCal better on the iPad first… before to have them on Lion.

    c- Terminal? It would be the last piece from OS X you would need in iOS. And they can easily release it as an Admin/Geek tool (just like XCode). 

    Everything else would be just improvement of the current Apps/features. We already have much of the features (Mail, Safari, iTunes, Facetime, iMessage, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, Address Book, iCal, iMovie, Garage Band, Quicktime, etc…). What do we still need? A better iPhoto/Aperture App, iBook Author for iPad… but that’s pretty much it. All the rest are just improvements.

    That’s the reason why I do believe (if it’s not the last “one more thing” surprise for this summer), we might still see one more update on both side (iOS 6 and OS 10.9) before they become one OS for both iMacs, MacBooks, iPads, iPhone, etc…

    Note: If I do forget some missing, please feel free to let me know; we’ll add it to the list :)

    PS: I personally also wish I could have a Graphic Suite to design vector elements, HTML5 animation, etc… without using Adobe Creative Suite. 

    3) What’s the technical limits?

    Developing Apps for large screen and high resolution? If they do release an iPad 3 with Retina Display, most of developer will update their graphics with larger resolution and be ready for the 1080p Experience, as well on an iMac, as on a potential future Apple TV. Here’s the catch…

    4) Apple TV and Games…

    Just release an Apple TV (whatever if it’s a new box or a complete TV set) that support iOS on a 1080p screen. All the thousands of apps (and GAMES) will immediately be available for your Apple TV and run perfectly on your TV. With most of the game under 10 bucks, and hardware that will have very powerful graphics capability, they will directly compete with PS3, Xbox and Wii. But with $4.99, or even $9.99, directly accessible from the App Store, they will just kill the $60/70 games…. without even mentioning the Game Console price.

    With Game Center, you can then buy a game and play it everywhere… On your TV, on your iMac, on your iPhone or your iPad… without any extra-charge, from the same account. You can even download it from iCloud… In comparison to Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, nobody will propose THIS complete user experience, with so much choices… and even not at this price.

    They can just release a new Apple TV box, with an onboard Camera (just like Kinnect), with video and audio outs, several USB to plug a drive or your iPhone, running a kind of “FrontRow” for iOS… as well as all current iOS Apps (Netflix, Hulu, etc…). I wish it would also have an internal drive to replace the Time Capsule to become the real digital hub, but I’m sure Apple would like to better keep it simple and have a seamless integration with the Time Capsule (recognized as your storage place for your iTunes library as well your iOS updates files, your backup, as well as your recorded content.

    By running iOS Apps, you could surf the web, check your email or Facebook, review a Pages documents, mount your holiday videos in iMovie, etc… You could even use your iPhone, iPod and iPad as entry devices…. and even have some “network” games. For instance board game or card game. Every players can see their cards on their iPhone/iPod/etc… and the main game on the TV.

    With some wireless GamePads (like the Xbox), you could simply play directly on your TV like any PS3, Xbox, etc… even with some gesture with the iSight like Kinnect. $99 for the Apple TV is just ridiculous… even $199 with 1080p, iOS Apps, iCloud, iTunes Streaming, iSight, TiVo features and a gamepad will still be a good deal.

    And finally, include some TiVO features to record live stream and you’re done…. well, almost, here’s the catch:

    5) iCloud Services

    The full user experience goes even further the hardware and software, it also include services now. To gain the TV market, Apple could just propose a kind of subscription to stream content to the user. It could of course could be some TV Shows, etc… like Netflix, but also some Live Channels (Sports, Show Premiere, etc…). That could be a kind of monthly plan (between $19.99 and $29.99) to have access to live streaming… definitely redefine the way you want watch TV.

    Because the integration between the TV Channels and the TiVo-ish features, as well as iTunes would be transparent. You can watch a show for “free” since you have ads and you pay monthly subscription, or you can just buy/rent the episode from the store… Everything would be in the same place to get anyway. Once you have that on iOS devices, and since iOS and OS X devices would merge, you could also get the TV on your iMac (which already is close to the small TV size) and also your MacBook.

    Just connect to iCloud to download a TV Shows you did record on your “Tivo” Apps on your Apple TV… Again, no other TV manufacture could propose this level of perfect integration between all devices, completely sync, with the same workflow. Everybody believes Apple might release a complete TV… Personally I do think a better Apple TV would be enough (as long it does support 1080p and allow you to control everything from your main remote/wireless keyboard… just like the Boxee Box… or even without the remote with SIRI integration)

    6) It’s not a step down for Geek

    Most of people do think iOS is a step down version of OS X… it might be true as long iOS doesn’t cover all needs for 90-95% of the users. And of course, there’s still some missing today… but it’s just a matter of time between now (iOS 5), the next version (iOS 6) that could already include some such AirDrop, iPhoto/Aperture and a kind of “File Manager”… and finally iOS 7 that could be the moment to merge with OS X by bringing Terminal, XCode and all Admin/Dev features.

    A lot of Apps such Pages, Numbers, iMovie, etc… could receive in the mean time some improvement to be even closer and closer than the current Desktop versions. So in the end, it won’t be any “step down” for the Geek, because with the Admin/Dev tools such Terminal and XCode, they could hack as much as they want… at this point, the iOS devices could be even more “open”.

    7) GateKeeper stuff

    If we can see it as a way to “lock down” some open feature of OS X, we can also imagine the same thing could come in iOS 6 or 7 to remove some limits of iOS…. Allowing the iPad to run any apps from “Everywhere” if GateKeeper is unlocked… 

    That will be another reason for Geek to like it… Having the choice to have it open to anything (at your own risk to crash, virus, etc…), or close to apps from the App Store only (safer and probably better for mass market users).

    8) iOS Apps on OS X…

    Since the dev tools are apparently the same, we will have Game Center and a lot of similar stuff between iOS and OS X now, and we can even imagine pretty quickly to get Apps in HD resolution with the iPad 3 to be ready for large screen resolution… I wouldn’t be surprise to be able to run iOS apps in Moutain Lion (that could be a “one more thing”)… Then it would a HUGE deal update, allowing to access to thousand and thousand of Apps for OS X…. since we already have Launchpad for an easier transition too.

    What would be really missing is mainly hardware (the touchscreen). But it wouldn’t be a software limitation. It would also be a great way to test some apps. The transition between iOS and OS X would be even easier that way.

    9) TouchScreen…

    If we actually have a look on all current version of Apps (even in Lion), there’s a lot of “improvements” that some might dislike that could come very handy pretty soon…

    I do think about the “Large Icon”, gesture, new UI, etc… Actually if you really look closely, you can notice everything is made to be “Touchscreen Ready”. Regardless if it’s the elements in the sidebar, or the top icon, or even some gesture to go from page to page, etc… it’s all done to be ready for touchscreen.

    That’s another lead to the conclusion OS X might be use with Touchscreen and could merge with iOS for future products.

    10) Price

    Apple prices will be hard to beat… since Microsoft is a software company first. They need to sell Windows to make money. Apple doesn’t care to get way less money on OS X, because they mainly develop software to bring more value to their hardware and make you buy their hardware.

    After all, iOS update are free for the iPhone and something under $10 for the iPod, right? So, I wouldn’t be surprise to see something similar in future. $29 for a full complete version, and only $9.99 if you update from Lion or Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion. 

    That would be very difficult to compete with, it would still bring a lot of cash to cover development cost, and will drive sales. You did buy an iPhone, then you bought an iPad and you love it? Now you can just buy an iMac or MacBookPro, have the same user experience, you already know how to use it, and it will only cost your 10 bucks to upgrade if you have to (or perhaps even free, who knows?)…  

    And to kill the competition, you can get free iCloud services that will link and sync all your devices together… So you will have all interest to stay in the Apple world for the Apple experience. 

  • Spid

    I completely agree with you Chris and here are my thoughts:
    (Sorry for spelling, English is not my first language)

    1) User Experience to drive sales:

    By bringing some of the iOS features, relatively simpler than Desktop versions, they also bring some user experience to make it simpler, as well as driving sales by saying: If you know how to use your iPhone or your iPad, you’re ready to use a MacBookPro or an iMac. It’s actually very smart move.

    2) The OS X and iOS convergence:

    Now it’s perfectly clear, we can see where Apple’s going (if it wasn’t already the case with Lion for some of us :)). I have no doubt we will see a merge between OS X and iOS in the future… Seriously, what are we missing on iOS, even today?

    a- A kind of File Manager with iFinder and Airdrop to easily and seamlessly exchange files between devices. Apple already did make Finder simpler on Lion…. by removing the Library folder, almost every notion of system files/folders for the user… 
    In Apple mind, the user doesn’t care about the system, it should “just work” and the user doesn’t care to know where his/her files are, as long he/she can find them easily and quickly. So the only missing thing in iOS 6/7 would be a iFinder (and/or better Spotlight) to have access to your file without going through iTunes files system.

    b- XCode? The day you can start developing for a device directly from the device, you don’t need anything else. I wouldn’t be surprise they would release an “iCode” application for the iPad, to develop application in an even simpler way than now… Rethink about “how to build an app” and redesign the tool directly for the iPad. It will be so easier than everyone will wish to have it for OS X then… the same way we did like the Mail, Contact and iCal better on the iPad first… before to have them on Lion.

    c- Terminal? It would be the last piece from OS X you would need in iOS. And they can easily release it as an Admin/Geek tool (just like XCode). 

    Everything else would be just improvement of the current Apps/features. We already have much of the features (Mail, Safari, iTunes, Facetime, iMessage, Pages, Numbers, Keynote, Address Book, iCal, iMovie, Garage Band, Quicktime, etc…). What do we still need? A better iPhoto/Aperture App, iBook Author for iPad… but that’s pretty much it. All the rest are just improvements.

    That’s the reason why I do believe (if it’s not the last “one more thing” surprise for this summer), we might still see one more update on both side (iOS 6 and OS 10.9) before they become one OS for both iMacs, MacBooks, iPads, iPhone, etc…

    Note: If I do forget some missing, please feel free to let me know; we’ll add it to the list :)

    PS: I personally also wish I could have a Graphic Suite to design vector elements, HTML5 animation, etc… without using Adobe Creative Suite. 

    3) What’s the technical limits?

    Developing Apps for large screen and high resolution? If they do release an iPad 3 with Retina Display, most of developer will update their graphics with larger resolution and be ready for the 1080p Experience, as well on an iMac, as on a potential future Apple TV. Here’s the catch…

    4) Apple TV and Games…

    Just release an Apple TV (whatever if it’s a new box or a complete TV set) that support iOS on a 1080p screen. All the thousands of apps (and GAMES) will immediately be available for your Apple TV and run perfectly on your TV. With most of the game under 10 bucks, and hardware that will have very powerful graphics capability, they will directly compete with PS3, Xbox and Wii. But with $4.99, or even $9.99, directly accessible from the App Store, they will just kill the $60/70 games…. without even mentioning the Game Console price.

    With Game Center, you can then buy a game and play it everywhere… On your TV, on your iMac, on your iPhone or your iPad… without any extra-charge, from the same account. You can even download it from iCloud… In comparison to Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, nobody will propose THIS complete user experience, with so much choices… and even not at this price.

    They can just release a new Apple TV box, with an onboard Camera (just like Kinnect), with video and audio outs, several USB to plug a drive or your iPhone, running a kind of “FrontRow” for iOS… as well as all current iOS Apps (Netflix, Hulu, etc…). I wish it would also have an internal drive to replace the Time Capsule to become the real digital hub, but I’m sure Apple would like to better keep it simple and have a seamless integration with the Time Capsule (recognized as your storage place for your iTunes library as well your iOS updates files, your backup, as well as your recorded content.

    By running iOS Apps, you could surf the web, check your email or Facebook, review a Pages documents, mount your holiday videos in iMovie, etc… You could even use your iPhone, iPod and iPad as entry devices…. and even have some “network” games. For instance board game or card game. Every players can see their cards on their iPhone/iPod/etc… and the main game on the TV.

    With some wireless GamePads (like the Xbox), you could simply play directly on your TV like any PS3, Xbox, etc… even with some gesture with the iSight like Kinnect. $99 for the Apple TV is just ridiculous… even $199 with 1080p, iOS Apps, iCloud, iTunes Streaming, iSight, TiVo features and a gamepad will still be a good deal.

    And finally, include some TiVO features to record live stream and you’re done…. well, almost, here’s the catch:

    5) iCloud Services

    The full user experience goes even further the hardware and software, it also include services now. To gain the TV market, Apple could just propose a kind of subscription to stream content to the user. It could of course could be some TV Shows, etc… like Netflix, but also some Live Channels (Sports, Show Premiere, etc…). That could be a kind of monthly plan (between $19.99 and $29.99) to have access to live streaming… definitely redefine the way you want watch TV.

    Because the integration between the TV Channels and the TiVo-ish features, as well as iTunes would be transparent. You can watch a show for “free” since you have ads and you pay monthly subscription, or you can just buy/rent the episode from the store… Everything would be in the same place to get anyway. Once you have that on iOS devices, and since iOS and OS X devices would merge, you could also get the TV on your iMac (which already is close to the small TV size) and also your MacBook.

    Just connect to iCloud to download a TV Shows you did record on your “Tivo” Apps on your Apple TV… Again, no other TV manufacture could propose this level of perfect integration between all devices, completely sync, with the same workflow. Everybody believes Apple might release a complete TV… Personally I do think a better Apple TV would be enough (as long it does support 1080p and allow you to control everything from your main remote/wireless keyboard… just like the Boxee Box… or even without the remote with SIRI integration)

    6) It’s not a step down for Geek

    Most of people do think iOS is a step down version of OS X… it might be true as long iOS doesn’t cover all needs for 90-95% of the users. And of course, there’s still some missing today… but it’s just a matter of time between now (iOS 5), the next version (iOS 6) that could already include some such AirDrop, iPhoto/Aperture and a kind of “File Manager”… and finally iOS 7 that could be the moment to merge with OS X by bringing Terminal, XCode and all Admin/Dev features.

    A lot of Apps such Pages, Numbers, iMovie, etc… could receive in the mean time some improvement to be even closer and closer than the current Desktop versions. So in the end, it won’t be any “step down” for the Geek, because with the Admin/Dev tools such Terminal and XCode, they could hack as much as they want… at this point, the iOS devices could be even more “open”.

    7) GateKeeper stuff

    If we can see it as a way to “lock down” some open feature of OS X, we can also imagine the same thing could come in iOS 6 or 7 to remove some limits of iOS…. Allowing the iPad to run any apps from “Everywhere” if GateKeeper is unlocked… 

    That will be another reason for Geek to like it… Having the choice to have it open to anything (at your own risk to crash, virus, etc…), or close to apps from the App Store only (safer and probably better for mass market users).

    8) iOS Apps on OS X…

    Since the dev tools are apparently the same, we will have Game Center and a lot of similar stuff between iOS and OS X now, and we can even imagine pretty quickly to get Apps in HD resolution with the iPad 3 to be ready for large screen resolution… I wouldn’t be surprise to be able to run iOS apps in Moutain Lion (that could be a “one more thing”)… Then it would a HUGE deal update, allowing to access to thousand and thousand of Apps for OS X…. since we already have Launchpad for an easier transition too.

    What would be really missing is mainly hardware (the touchscreen). But it wouldn’t be a software limitation. It would also be a great way to test some apps. The transition between iOS and OS X would be even easier that way.

    9) TouchScreen…

    If we actually have a look on all current version of Apps (even in Lion), there’s a lot of “improvements” that some might dislike that could come very handy pretty soon…

    I do think about the “Large Icon”, gesture, new UI, etc… Actually if you really look closely, you can notice everything is made to be “Touchscreen Ready”. Regardless if it’s the elements in the sidebar, or the top icon, or even some gesture to go from page to page, etc… it’s all done to be ready for touchscreen.

    That’s another lead to the conclusion OS X might be use with Touchscreen and could merge with iOS for future products.

    10) Price

    Apple prices will be hard to beat… since Microsoft is a software company first. They need to sell Windows to make money. Apple doesn’t care to get way less money on OS X, because they mainly develop software to bring more value to their hardware and make you buy their hardware.

    After all, iOS update are free for the iPhone and something under $10 for the iPod, right? So, I wouldn’t be surprise to see something similar in future. $29 for a full complete version, and only $9.99 if you update from Lion or Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion. 

    That would be very difficult to compete with, it would still bring a lot of cash to cover development cost, and will drive sales. You did buy an iPhone, then you bought an iPad and you love it? Now you can just buy an iMac or MacBookPro, have the same user experience, you already know how to use it, and it will only cost your 10 bucks to upgrade if you have to (or perhaps even free, who knows?)…  

    And to kill the competition, you can get free iCloud services that will link and sync all your devices together… So you will have all interest to stay in the Apple world for the Apple experience. 

  • Bang Gowes

    Great article, using 10.5.8 now…free update please…:-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=688046780 Anonymous

    I like a lot of these features, however, I don’t think this is a major revision update like leopard was or Lion. It is more like Snow Leopard and maybe even a little less. I would pay the $29 for this,  but I hope there is more. My major fault with Lion was what they did with mission control. It was a major step backwards from expose/spaces. There are things I can’t do today with mission control that I could on Snow Leopard. It also seems like they need a little better integration of multiple monitors. Snow Leopard was better at this than Lion. Mountain Lion needs these upgrades. I hope there is more than what is listed, but even if it isn’t, I’ll pay $29 for it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=688046780 Anonymous

    I like a lot of these features, however, I don’t think this is a major revision update like leopard was or Lion. It is more like Snow Leopard and maybe even a little less. I would pay the $29 for this,  but I hope there is more. My major fault with Lion was what they did with mission control. It was a major step backwards from expose/spaces. There are things I can’t do today with mission control that I could on Snow Leopard. It also seems like they need a little better integration of multiple monitors. Snow Leopard was better at this than Lion. Mountain Lion needs these upgrades. I hope there is more than what is listed, but even if it isn’t, I’ll pay $29 for it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=688046780 Anonymous

    I like a lot of these features, however, I don’t think this is a major revision update like leopard was or Lion. It is more like Snow Leopard and maybe even a little less. I would pay the $29 for this,  but I hope there is more. My major fault with Lion was what they did with mission control. It was a major step backwards from expose/spaces. There are things I can’t do today with mission control that I could on Snow Leopard. It also seems like they need a little better integration of multiple monitors. Snow Leopard was better at this than Lion. Mountain Lion needs these upgrades. I hope there is more than what is listed, but even if it isn’t, I’ll pay $29 for it.

  • Nathaniel Peterson

    Just want to throw in my opinion (and we know what opinions are like) about this integrating IOS to OS X. I run a 2009 Mac Pro 8 Core, Dual screens, SSD Drives, eSATA Raid enclosures, High-end Audio interfaces and so on. This is my work station; a tower of power, and it must be reliable, fast and easy to use. Snow Leopard hands down was solid. But since i still need to use my Mac for email (.me address) and some web surfing. I had to move to Lion, since they’re offing MobileMe I’m forced to convert mail to iCloud. If you don’t follow the tribe, you’ll get left behind. So i did. What a mistake; sure it has a few nice features, but more bugs than need be for 24/7 frustrations. Were into 10.7.3 and there is still enough hair pulling to make you bald. Correct me if I’m wrong but if i go back to Snow i won’t be able to use my iCloud mail, Calendar, and Contacts syncing? 
    I have an iPad, I have an iPhone 4s (these are my Mobile devices). I need my desktop Mac to be exactly that, a working machine. Not game center, notification center, launch pad, and mission control (Ground Control to Major Tom). My desktop is in no way portable nor do i wish it to be. I understand your saying they aren’t trying to make our Macs into iPads, but it just feels like they’re pushing a more iPad or Mobile OS X to us. Why aren’t we given a Customizable OS X where we can pick what we do or don’t want upon installation. As simple as a checklist; Do you want Game center, Launch Pad, Mission Control, Notification Center and so on, check them off before install. Honestly I’m disappointed in the direction of OS X. And the fact that i just paid the $30 for Lion and in a few months it will cost another $30 to upgrade again is the icing on the cake. Its as though after a few version updates even Apple is abandoning Lion. Why can’t we have solid work stations and solid mobile devices as we did in the past?Like i said this was just an opinion. I know i know yours smells better…. lol

  • Garlic

    It is really nice to see that Apple brings a lot of iOS stuff to Mountain Lion without making a desktop more iPad-like.

    As a side note, I really hope Mountain Lion will be more ‘lightweight’ Lion. In Snow Leopard, I used to be able to run virtual machine with 2GB allocated to guest (on MBP with 4GB RAM), but with Lion, allocating 2GB results in heavy swapping and slowdown (because all 4GB are used up completely).

  • Anonymous

    Hi Nathaniel,

    First of all, I completely understand your situation. I kept my Mac Pro (Also 8 Core) and iMac 27″ on Snow Leopard because I use them as Workstation to work (mainly on ProTools). I’m waiting until the last moment, praying to have something more stable.

    I actually do think that Mountain Lion is to Lion what Win 7 was to Vista. That’s actually what I’m hoping for… Just a “better” Lion :)

    But I clearly don’t think and don’t believe in the “option” application. It’s an “all-in-one”, working together. I don’t mind to have a “Twitter” integration even if I don’t care about it and will never use it… it’s part of the OS. As long an OS is stable, we don’t really care of what’s in or not. For instance, I never use the Bluetooth File Exchange, but it doesn’t bother me to be there.

    Maybe some people game with their Mac Pros, iMacs and MacBookPros and they will love Game Center… So it’s better to have everything in and not have 6 versions such Windows Vista: Home Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Entreprise and Ultimate.

    Regarding the update price… let’s wait the official announcement. We might be surprise by a Free update for all Lion users. 

    I’m pretty sure we could have a rock solid OS, even with all iOS features. Actually, it might be even more rock solid. Until then… let’s be patient :)

    Phil

  • Anonymous

    Hi Nathaniel,

    First of all, I completely understand your situation. I kept my Mac Pro (Also 8 Core) and iMac 27″ on Snow Leopard because I use them as Workstation to work (mainly on ProTools). I’m waiting until the last moment, praying to have something more stable.

    I actually do think that Mountain Lion is to Lion what Win 7 was to Vista. That’s actually what I’m hoping for… Just a “better” Lion :)

    But I clearly don’t think and don’t believe in the “option” application. It’s an “all-in-one”, working together. I don’t mind to have a “Twitter” integration even if I don’t care about it and will never use it… it’s part of the OS. As long an OS is stable, we don’t really care of what’s in or not. For instance, I never use the Bluetooth File Exchange, but it doesn’t bother me to be there.

    Maybe some people game with their Mac Pros, iMacs and MacBookPros and they will love Game Center… So it’s better to have everything in and not have 6 versions such Windows Vista: Home Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Entreprise and Ultimate.

    Regarding the update price… let’s wait the official announcement. We might be surprise by a Free update for all Lion users. 

    I’m pretty sure we could have a rock solid OS, even with all iOS features. Actually, it might be even more rock solid. Until then… let’s be patient :)

    Phil

  • Anonymous

    Hi Nathaniel,

    First of all, I completely understand your situation. I kept my Mac Pro (Also 8 Core) and iMac 27″ on Snow Leopard because I use them as Workstation to work (mainly on ProTools). I’m waiting until the last moment, praying to have something more stable.

    I actually do think that Mountain Lion is to Lion what Win 7 was to Vista. That’s actually what I’m hoping for… Just a “better” Lion :)

    But I clearly don’t think and don’t believe in the “option” application. It’s an “all-in-one”, working together. I don’t mind to have a “Twitter” integration even if I don’t care about it and will never use it… it’s part of the OS. As long an OS is stable, we don’t really care of what’s in or not. For instance, I never use the Bluetooth File Exchange, but it doesn’t bother me to be there.

    Maybe some people game with their Mac Pros, iMacs and MacBookPros and they will love Game Center… So it’s better to have everything in and not have 6 versions such Windows Vista: Home Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Entreprise and Ultimate.

    Regarding the update price… let’s wait the official announcement. We might be surprise by a Free update for all Lion users. 

    I’m pretty sure we could have a rock solid OS, even with all iOS features. Actually, it might be even more rock solid. Until then… let’s be patient :)

    Phil

  • http://twitter.com/AndyUno1 AndyUno1

    Mountain Lion seems ok, but unlike many people switching from PC to Mac, I am actually going the other way. This upgrade won’t work on my Mac Pro (2006), which is an eternity in computing years, but I don’t think it’s a hardware issue, I think it is an Apple issue. Plus, with the way things have been going, who knows how long they will have the professional machines. I do worry about to convergence of the iOS and OS X, and if you notice, it is not Mac OS X now, it is just OS X. Is that something to worry about? I don’t know. 

    • Anonymous

      I believe it’s not Mac OS X now anymore, because OS X and iOS will become one in one or two years from now. 

      So iOS X (the next OS X and next iOS) could be the OS for both Macs and Mobiles devices such iPad and iPhone. 

      That would make sense to me and would explain why they drop the Mac already and brought a lot of iPad features in OS X and will continue to bring more OS X features to iOS. 

      The question is: What OS X features will be the next one to come on iOS? What you do like? Finder? Terminal? XCode? iPhoto? Aperture? Logic? iBook Author?… What else and what’s first?

      Phil

  • http://twitter.com/MarcBookPro Marc Schroeder

    I think Mountain Lion is just what I needed to get me to finally move all my machines from Snow Leopard.

  • Echob4ter

    Remember your days on TechTV, being so anti-Mac? It was the iPad that brought you over to us, wasn’t it?

  • Ben

    Chris, why do you think they took the idea of a “Developer Preview”? Didn’t Microsoft already use that? The way I see it, Microsoft needs to patent everything just to keep Apple from taking it.

  • http://twitter.com/Julzz Julius Pap 

    you are apple illiterate… they used developer preview since osx 10.0

  • jS

    so, when you preview something to your developers, what do you call it?
    you cannot patent words.