updated 09:35 am EST, Wed November 19, 2008
Snow Leopard in Q1 2009
The next major release of Mac OS X is scheduled to arrive before many were anticipating, according to a recent Apple presentation. When Mac OS X Snow Leopard was announced at WWDC '08, it was stated that it would take "about a year" to bring the update to market. At last week's Large Installation System Administration (LISA) conference however, Apple's Director of Engineering of Unix Technologies, Jordan Hubbard, is said to have announced that Snow Leopard (Mac OS X 10.6) will ship in the first quarter of 2009, several months ahead of public expectation.
The short turnaround may be possible due to the focus of the OS, which is on performance and security upgrades rather than any significant feature additions. A number of changes have been confirmed though, such as a rewritten Cocoa-based finder, HFS+ file compression, and improved support for Microsoft Exchange in Mail, iCal and Address Book. If released in January, Snow Leopard could also coincide with the 2009 Macworld Expo, and possibly quad-core iMacs.