Features of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion highlighted by Jobs Wednesday include:
App Home screens
Full screen apps
Apps resume when launched
Apple said Lion, shipping next summer, is inspired by many of iPads software innovations. Todays sneak peek highlighted just a few of Lions features, including the Mac App Store, a new way to discover, install and automatically update desktop apps; Launchpad, a new home for all of your Mac apps; system-wide support for full screen apps; and Mission Control, which unifies Exposé, Dashboard, Spaces and full screen apps into an innovative new view of everything running on your Mac, and allows you to instantly navigate anywhere.
"Lion brings many of the best ideas from iPad back to the Mac, plus some fresh new ones like Mission Control that Mac users will really like, Jobs said in a press release. "Lion has a ton of new features, and we hope the few we had time to preview today will give users a good idea of where we are headed."
Jobs said that touchscreens don't work when in front of a user, which is why devices like the iPhone and iPad are successful. Given that, Jobs said Macs will stick with products like the trackpad and Magic Mouse for input.
"This is how we're going to use multi-touch on our Mac products," he said.
Mac App Store
Lion will bring the Mac App Store, which, like on iOS, will include one-click downloads, free and paid downloads, and revenue sharing with developers. The Mac App Store will also include automatic updates, and software will be licensed for use on all personal Macs.
Apple said the Mac App Store brings the App Store experience to OS X, making discovering, installing and updating Mac apps easier than ever. Like on iPad, you purchase apps using your iTunes account and they download and install in just one step. App updates are delivered directly through the Mac App Store, so its easy to keep all of your apps up to date. The Mac App Store will be available for Snow Leopard within 90 days and will be included in Lion when it ships next summer.
A demo showing off the Mac App Store showed off the ability to purchase and install Pages with just one click. Applications can also be added to the Launch Pad, which can be selected from the Mac OS X Dock and brings an iPad-style grid of icons and pages onto the screen as an overlay.
Jobs also announced a new feature, Mission Control, which allows users to view anything running on a Mac and instantly navigate to anywhere. He said this will combine existing features, like Expose, with new ones like full screen.
Apple said that Mission Control presents you with a unified view of every app and window running on your Mac, so you can instantly navigate anywhere. Mission Control also incorporates the next generation of Exposé, presenting all the windows running on your Mac grouped by application, alongside thumbnails of full screen apps, Dashboard and other Spaces.
Mission Control clusters alike apps, making them easy to select when in Mission Control.
Launchpad makes it easier than ever to find and launch any app. Similar to the Home screen on iPad, you can see all the apps on your Mac elegantly displayed just by clicking the Launchpad icon in the dock. Apps can be organized in any order or grouped into folders, and you can swipe through multiple pages of apps to find the one you want.
Lion includes system-wide support for full screen applications. With Lion, you can enter full screen mode with just one click, switch from one full screen app to another with just a swipe of the trackpad, and swipe back to the desktop to access your multi-window applications.
"I wish we had another hour and a half to show you more," Jobs said at the conclusion of Wednesday's presentation. "We'll unveil this over time as we get closer to releasing it."