First Sony and Microsoft, then Apple. Seems the big guns have a lot dates for our diaries today. The latest: Mac OS X version 10.4 (codenamed “Tiger”) goes on sale 29 April.
Tiger is much more than just a rehash of current the current OS X, known as Panther. The feline obsessed white fetishist has bundled more than 200 new features and innovations into this update. Foremost among them is Spotlight, a built in desktop search technology similar to software we covered in our article about the impending Desktop Search Revolution. It lets users quickly find anything on their Macs including documents, music, emails, contacts and images.
Another notable add-on is Dashboard. This clever little piece of trickery offers a “dashboard” (clever) of accessory applications it calls widgets (I thought they were the devices that frothed beer in cans?) which give immediate access to information like stock quotes, weather forecasts, airline flight tracking, units of measure, currency conversions, a phone book and the like. With a single click a user’s favourite Dashboard widgets are displayed with up to the second information, another click makes them disappear. Expect hundreds of these things through third party developers over the coming months.
If you are a fan of iChat, you’ll be pleased to know Tiger supports the new H.264 codec for improved picture quality. A new Automator workflow application lets users automate repetitive tasks (like going to work maybe?), and there is a fully featured integrated RSS reader built into Safari.
Naturally, 64bit application support comes as standard and there is QuickTime 7, Mail 2, iCal 2, Font Book 2 and a new synchronisation engine.
Suggested RRP for Tiger is £89 for a single user licence. A “Family Pack” (single residence, five user licence) goes for £139. Tiger Server editions begin at £349 for a 10 client edition and £699 for an unlimited client edition. All prices include VAT.
We look forward to the name of the next edition of OS X. Perhaps it can include Apple’s twin obsessions of colour and cat? We suggest Snow Leopard.