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Mac OS X 10.7 delayed by iPhone 4.0 work?

updated 01:05 pm EDT, Mon April 12, 2010

Google Android may be in crosshairs

Work on Mac OS X 10.7 has been delayed, says Daring Fireball's John Gruber. The tech writer notes that some months ago, he received word that Apple had "tentative plans" to ship a developer beta of the OS at this year's WWDC, likely to be scheduled for early June. Coding of v10.7 is indeed still in progress, claims Gruber, but now with a smaller team and an "unknown" timetable.

There may be no v10.7 news at WWDC this year, the writer argues, and perhaps none until WWDC 2011. The reason is said to be an emphasis on iPhone 4.0, one of Apple's main weapons in the fight against Google's Android platform. Apple is intensely focused on growing iPhone marketshare faster than Android, Gruber suggests, to the extent that it is now making everything not in competition with Android a secondary priority. iAd and multitasking may be examples of this, since Android has always supported multitasking, and the platform is closely linked with Google's main revenue source, search-based advertising. iAd detours search to situate itself in apps.

by MacNN Staff



  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969


    That's what I figured

    This close to WWDC, there should be rumors about the next Mac OS X release, if there is going to be one this year. There haven't been any rumors, so I figured iPhone OS and iPhone/iPad development would be the main focus of WWDC 2010.
    That's fine, but despite Apple dominance in portable entertainment and increasing success in smart phones (and potentially breaking open the entire handheld computing market with iPad) there is still one glaring omission in Apple's strategy. The cloud.
    Cloud computing is just the new name for "client-server heterogeneous interoperability over the internet." It's not new technology. It's just new mindshare. But Apple needs to make MobileMe free, to increase its use by Mac, iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad users. By asking $100 per year, they are losing a huge number of potential users. So yes, MobileMe is probably profitable for Apple.
    But that's not the point. MobileMe doesn't need to be a profit center for Apple. They make most of their money selling hardware. Making MobileMe free will increase its use by Apple hardware owners and will help to "lock them in." Once they've uploaded all their iPod nano videos, all their iPhone backups, all their email and documents to MobileMe, it'll be hard to move to another service.
    Mac OS X 10.7 and iPhone 4.0 can't count on MobileMe being there right now. The only way to ensure that MobileMe is available to all of Apple's hardware and software platforms is to make it free. Apple can't afford to fall behind the cloud computing curve.
    So maybe Apple was just testing the waters, limiting MobileMe usage by charging for it, and experimenting with server technology initially. Maybe Apple is just waiting for the time to be right (as they have done so expertly in other markets) before opening the floodgates to a free MobileMe. I wonder how that $1 billion North Carolina data center is shaping up...

  1. Geobunny

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: SockRolid

    The thing is, MobileMe was borne of DotMac which was originally iTools and which was originally a free service. Unfortunately, too many people were using it (if I remember correctly) for Apple to be able to maintain it as a freebie.

    You're absolutely right though, I haven't paid for MobileMe because I've already paid Apple more than enough money for my Macs and my iPhone. If it were free, I'd definitely use it, and then as you rightly say, it would eventually become hard for me to move to another service. It should either be free or at the very least come free with iLife (and hence be on a new Mac). iPhone owners should also get it free - or maybe just free for the duration of their contract.

  1. JeffHarris

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Spread Thin

    This makes sense. Personally, I think Apple needs to focus on fixing bugs in Snow Leopard, too.

    Their programming teams may be spread a little thin at this point with basically 4 OSes in development; Mac OS X, Mac OS X Server, iPhone and iPad. yeah, iPad is closely linked to the iPhone, as is Mac OS X and Server, but there are enough differences at this point that the iPad may represent a significant chunk outside iOS development.

  1. rok

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Okay, throwing around Gruber's name without saying *where* this statement came from is risky business. Gruber's got one of (if not THE) best sense's of Apple's business and technology strategies outside of Infinite Loop, and tacking his name onto an article is serious stuff. Was this a direct interview? If not, how do we know you're not misinterpreting the statement without a link to the original statement so we can judge the comments in context?

  1. Kees

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I for one thinks this is bad. I just don't think the iPhone warrants this kind of priority. I depend on OS X for my business. iPhone OS, including the iPad, is not something we are ever going to be productive on, their just assistive sidekicks. I may sound like on old f*** (for the record, I'm 36), but it seems to me people are spending time doing stuff on the thing because they can, not because it is absolutelly essential to the job they are doing. So now time is spent (wasted?) doing stuff on an iPhone, because "it is so easy to do now". Fact is though, that at least some of this time used to be spent more productively.

    The iPhone is a nice little toy, and pretty damn good at some of the stuff it does.
    I'd rather see Apple focus on the real tool though, which for us, as an architecture firm, is still a full-fledged, bug free as possible, OS X.

  1. _Rick_V_

    Joined: Dec 1969


    at: Kees

    I don't know if it's all bad. I'm a Mac-junkie just as much as the next guy, and I loves me the new features.

    However, Snow Leopard represents a pretty fundamental upgrade, and there's a lot of "in-between" that needs updating/improved. For example Quicktime X isn't really useful yet in the sense that it doesn't replace Quicktime Classic for Final Cut, iMovie, etc. Right now it's not much more than a player. There are still a few 32-bit apps that probably should be updated to 64-bit, for consistency if nothing else (like iTunes). And there's still quite a few major 3rd-party apps that need to be updated.

    So, frankly, it's simply way too soon to be introducing major new features when most aren't caught up to (taking advantage of) even the current features.

  1. godrifle

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What to do with Apple's Cash Horde?

    Buy more talented programmers and get Snow Leopard's ruffles smoothed out.

  1. pt123

    Joined: Dec 1969


    no big deal

    Apple can delay it all they want. I am pretty happy with OS 10.5.

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