The team in Cupertino, Calif., announced today the next version of its Mac operating system: Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. Released today for developers, Mountain Lion will be available to the public late this summer at the Mac App Store and on new Apple laptops and desktops.
While Apple’s current operating system Lion came out only seven months ago, Mountain Lion adds many more features, many of which were inspired by Apple’s iPhone iOS.
Here’s a peek at what Mountain Lion will bring:
Messages – Apple has long bundled its iChat messaging service on Macs, but it will replace that software with Messages, which ties in with iMessage, which hit the iPhone and iPad last year in iOS 5. Not only will you be able to message with your friends on their phones while you’re on your laptop or desktop, but you can also chat on popular instant messaging programs, such as AIM, Yahoo and Google Talk from the same program. Basically, Messages is an instant messaging and texting command center. The beta version is available today from Apple.
Game Center – This is another new feature that Apple’s bringing over from the iPhone and iPad. The gaming social network will let you play games with friends, who may be on their iPhone, iPad or Macs.
New Notifications – Apple integrated notifications in iOS last year, and now its Notification Center heads to the Mac. Alerts for new messages, calender appointments, Twitter updates and more appear on the screen, and you can swipe them away almost as easily as you do on your phone, except here you’ve got to use the trackapd.
Other additions – Of course, there’s tons of other useful additions, including a new reminder app that syncs with your iOS devices.
Apple is also addressing security head on with Gatekeeper Security, a new piece of software that gives users control over what apps can be downloaded and installed on their Macs.
Apple has not yet said what Mountain Lion will cost. The price is $29.99 to upgrade to the current Mac OS, Lion.