updated 10:30 am EST, Tue January 12, 2010
Support finds its way into dev builds
The next Snow Leopard update will support OpenGL 3.0, reports suggest. References to the graphics technology are said to lay within the latest developer builds of Mac OS X 10.6.3, although the OS is not yet fully compatible. An ATI utility indicates that 95 percent of v3.0 libraries are supported, missing only Shader Language 1.3.
OpenGL is a cross-platform rendering API, primarily directed at 3D graphics tasks such as gaming, CAD and visual effects. While the v3.0 standard has been present on Windows systems for some time, Mac owners have been limited to v2.1, an artificial ceiling given compatibility on modern Mac video cards. The lack of OpenGL 3.0 support in Snow Leopard may in fact be harming the Mac gaming industry, as it makes it harder to compete with Windows titles, or even port over some modern Windows games.