Apple's latest version of the Mac OS 10.8, code named Mountain Lion was released about a month ago. It includes many changes and new features. Mountain Lion is available through App Store and is only $20.
While, not all users will notice or even like all the new features, there is something for everyone. At $20, it easily justifies the inexpensive price point. There is plenty to talk about when it comes to Mountain Lion. After using it for three weeks, this article will highlight the top three features that make it a worthy upgrade.
- Airplay: Airplay allows users to mirror their display on a television through an Apple TV. Users could do this previously with the right cables, but this new method is wireless, making it a much better option. Airplay will scale the Mac screen for the TV in real time so users don't have to limit their resolution on the Mac, which is another big improvement compared to the cable option. If the Mac can display it, it can send it to the TV. The only downside right now is it only works on the more recent machines.
- iCloud Applications: Apple put notes in the mail app and reminders in iCal under the previous operating system 10.7 Lion. In 10.8, Apple created new applications for them. These applications work much better than the Mail and iCal and automatically sync between any Apple device. This allows users to take notes anywhere and read them everywhere. For those with an iPad, these applications will look almost identical to the iOS counterparts. There are many note taking and todo list applications in the App Store, but these come built into every Apple device and are free. Notes and Reminders may not come with the most number of features, but if one is only looking for a good basic version, look no further.
- iCloud File Sync: Files in Mountain Lion can now be saved to iCloud in supporting applications. The main ones right now are iWorks and TextEdit. While TextEdit does not have an iOS counterpart, the iWorks suits does. With iCloud, users can view and edit iWorks files from any device with the right iWorks software. With automatic updating between devices, users can access all their files from all their Apple devices. While Apple's applications are the first out of the gate, other developers will be adding iCloud file saving to their applications. iCloud will become the standard way developers sync files between multiple computers and devices. As long as Apple can keep iCloud operational and secure, iCloud will continue to be a big part of every Apple product.
Apple has added a number of good features to its latest operating system for the Mac and it is an easy upgrade at $20. With Mountain Lion, Apple continues to bring iOS and Mac OS closer together. This time it is with data and file synchronization through iCloud. Will iCloud become the users home directory in the future? Apple is slowly moving in that direction.
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