Developer conferences have taken a turn in recent years, becoming as much an opportunity for companies to interact with the dev community as a platform for launching hardware outside larger all-industry shows. This year's WWDC, however, has been all about the software thus far. Apple has, as anticipated, given the world its first glimpse of its latest desktop operating system. The Mountain Lion followup shifts away from the big cat naming, to a California-themed release: Mavericks, paying homage to the giant wave surfing spot.
The first new feature is finder tabs: a browser-like system based in windows. Just add a tab by clicking plus in a window. You can also finally take the Finder full-screen. Also new, tagging. You can tag files based on location and other details, making them much searchable. There's a tagging sidebar that'll let you view them all in one handy place. Multiple Displays got a big cheer as well, letting you view menus across screens, viewing different apps in full screen mode on each display. You can independently pan on displays as well, and AirPlay connected HDTVs work a full, connected display. Apple showed off the new functionality to big cheers in the developer-packed room.
WWDC 2013: OS X Mavericks
OS X Mavericks Press Photos
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Also cool is the ability to respond to Notifications. You can also get your Notifications pushed to your lock screen and get updates pushed directly while your system is sleeping. Calendar finally dropped that leather scheme and added weather and Facebook updates. It will also add the travel time to your appointments, so you don't overbook and will let you know exactly when you need to leave, in order to get there on time. Maps has come to Mac as well, bringing flyover data, turn by turn directions and the ability to send routes directly to your iPhone. Turn on your phone and there it is. Flyover data really does look impressive on the desktop -- we got a quick demo of a scan around the Eiffel Tower. You can add different locations to your bookmarks, which will sync across your devices.
Apple also announced the addition of iBooks for the desktop, giving you a bigger screen for all of those pretty pictures, letting you really drill down into images for iBooks text books. Adding notes is easier, too, giving you a sidebar, where you can view them all at the same time. New Study Cards, meanwhile. make it easy to cram for that big test. Xcode 5, meanwhile, brings a slew of new tools for app developers, giving them the ability to measure performance, energy use and to test out heir products.
Apple's promising better battery life through things like Compressed Memory and App Nap, which redirects power to different programs as you need it. The whole system can reduce CPU activity up to 72-percent, according to the company. The company also used the opportunity to show off the latest version of its Safari Browsing app. There's a new homepage with a cleaner layout and a sidebar with a reading list. Shared Links lets you check out links from your Twitter and LinkedIn friends. Power-savings is also on the list for the browser, along with bumped up performance benchmarks.
Apple didn't give too much away with the latest operating system -- heck, we didn't even hear a number -- but the company's sure to show off more in the coming months. For now, the details, not surprisingly, seem to be primarily focused at developers (this is, keep in mind, the World Wide Developers Conference). It has yet to be seen how the company plans to further set itself apart from the competition in 2013. In the meantime, the company's offering up a developer preview today. The rest of us will have to wait until the fall, when you can download it from the Mac App Store.
Follow our liveblog for all of the latest news from WWDC 2013.
Apple Releases Developer Preview of OS X Mavericks With More Than 200 New Features
SAN FRANCISCO-June 10, 2013-Apple today released a developer preview of OS X Mavericks the 10th major release of the world's most advanced operating system. With more than 200 new features, OS X Mavericks brings Maps and iBooks to the Mac, introduces Finder Tags and Tabs, enhances multi-display support for power users, delivers new core technologies for breakthrough power efficiency and performance, and includes an all new version of Safari. The preview release of OS X Mavericks is available to Mac Developer Program members starting today. Mac users will be able to download Mavericks from the Mac App Store this fall.
"The Mac has consistently outpaced the PC industry and OS X continues to be the most innovative and easy to use operating system in the world," said Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering. "OS X Mavericks is our best version yet and features new Maps and iBooks apps, Finder Tags and Tabs, enhanced multi-display support, performance and energy saving features, and an all new Safari."
Maps brings advanced mapping technologies from iOS to the Mac, including crisp vector graphics, stunning 3D view and interactive Flyover. With Maps you can plan a trip from your Mac, then send it to your iPhone for voice navigation on the road. Maps integration throughout Mavericks gives users helpful maps from within Mail, Contacts and Calendar, and developers can integrate the same powerful mapping features into their apps through the Map Kit API. With iBooks you have instant access to your existing iBooks library, as well as the more than 1.8 million titles in the iBooks Store from textbooks and classics to the latest best sellers. iBooks also works seamlessly across your devices, so you can read a book on your Mac, make notes or highlights, and then pick up exactly where you left off on your iPad.
OS X Mavericks introduces new power user features for the ultimate Mac experience. Tags are a powerful new way to organise and find your files anywhere on your Mac or in iCloud. You can easily tag any file in the Finder, in iCloud, or when saving a new document. Tags appear in the Finder Sidebar to enable you to view files by project or category. Finder Tabs reduce the clutter on your desktop by consolidating multiple Finder windows into one window with multiple tabs. You can customise the view for each tab, move files between tabs, and even run the Finder with multiple tabs open in full-screen. Mavericks also makes using multiple displays even easier and more powerful. The menu bar and dock are available on any display, and users can now easily run windowed or full-screen apps on whichever display they choose, with no configuration required. With Mavericks you can also use your HDTV as a second display using Apple TV and AirPlay.
New core technologies in OS X Mavericks improve the energy efficiency and responsiveness of your Mac. Timer Coalescing intelligently groups together low-level operations so that the CPU can spend more time in a low-power state, saving energy without affecting performance or responsiveness. App Nap reduces the power consumed by apps that you're not using. Compressed Memory technology keeps your Mac fast and responsive. When your system's memory begins to fill up, Compressed Memory automatically compresses inactive data. When these items are needed again, Mavericks instantly uncompresses them.
Additional features in OS X Mavericks include:
• iCloud Keychain, which safely stores your website login information, credit card numbers and Wi-Fi passwords, and pushes them to all of your devices so you don't need to remember them. Information is always protected with AES-256 encryption when it's stored on your Mac and when it's pushed to your devices;
• an updated Calendar, which adds integration with Maps, continuous scrolling so you can zip through weeks or months, and a new Inspector to simplify event creation and editing;
• interactive Notifications, allowing you to reply to a message, respond to a FaceTime call or even delete an email without leaving the app you're using. Websites can now use notifications to keep you up to date on the latest news, scores and other information. While You Were Away Notifications make sure you see what happened while your Mac was asleep; and
• Xcode 5, with powerful, intuitive new tools for developers that measure every aspect of app performance and energy use, as well as app testing.
Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices with iPad.