Although not hinting at any definitive future plans, Apple CEO Tim Cook admitted that all options are on the table for future of the Mac operating system, including merging the iOS platform and OS X together further. Other topics discussed included potentially running Macs on ARM processors like those found in the iPhone and iPad, or switching iOS to Intel instead.
The comments all came from a recent interview with The Wall Street Journal where Cook discussed the future of the Mac platform with the forthcoming Mountain Lion OS update. The CEO said he already views iOS and OS X as “one with incremental functionality,” though he expects both to continue to coexist alongside one another. When questioned about the two merging further, which would be a move that blurs the line between the two operating systems, Cook didn’t rule any options out. He even admitted that Macs could eventually run the same chips as the iPad and iPhone but didn’t specify whether ARM would come to the Mac or whether the iOS devices would transition to Intel processors.
Mountain Lion, the new operating system update, is set to release later this summer and represents a closer unification of many features found on the iOS platform onto the Mac platform. This includes features such as Notification Center, iCloud, Messages, Reminders, and Game Center. Furthermore, existing OS X applications will also be reamed to match their iOS counterparts such as Address Book becoming Contacts and iCal turning to Calendar.
Another thing the report discussed was the rumor about Apple’s upcoming television set, which came up when discussing the AirPlay Mirroring feature which will be included in Mountain Lion. This feature is set to allow users to wirelessly broadcast their Mac screens to an Apple TV on the same network. It noted that the addition of AirPlay is one that is “highly strategic for Apple, as it contemplates new technologies for the living room.”
Cook even noted how the Mac seems to be gaining traction in China where the iPhone has been largely successful and consumers seek to purchase Apple’s other products. Enhanced support in Mountain Lion for the Chinese language was an addition highlighted by Thursday’s announcement. OS X 10.8 will be including Baidu search in Safari and also improves compatibility with email service such as QQ, 126 and 163, and Share Sheets connectivity with Youku and Toudou, all of which are popular amongst Chinese users.
Last but not least, Cook declined to hint at any future plans for Mac hardware, although he did take the time to praise the MacBook Air noting that the PC industry is desperately trying to imitate its success. Apple is rumored to be taking cues from their sales b redesigning the MacBook Pro lineup this year with offerings that will look similar to that of the MacBook Air as well.
Source: The Wall Street Journal