Ben Brooks has an interesting take on OS X 10.7 Lion:
I think what we should expect to see in Lion is a lot of core iOS technology making its way into the aging desktop OS, along with some of the iOS philosophy. None of these changes are going to bring forth significantly radical OS changes — meaning Apple is not going to remove Finder. What Lion stands to do is to provide a half way point for OS X and where Apple would like to take OS X in the revisions to follow Lion.
The crux of Ben’s post is that Windows Vista ended up being a stepping stone from XP to Windows 7. I don’t think Microsoft intended that though. I think it clearly ended up being that way when Vista was a huge disaster.
But I don’t know that I totally agree that Lion will be a “stepping stone.” Snow Leopard was a stepping stone. It was a behind the scenes update to re-write and add a lot of low-level non-UI changes.
From what Apple has shown of Lion so far, it’s going to be very different. Full-screen apps and the Launchpad are definitely things we have seen before in iOS, but these are not things we have seen on the desktop. Most Apple fans have suspected that Apple would make OS X more iOS-like in the future, but I don’ think that’s a small change.
Assuming Apple has even more to show at some point1 I think OS X 10.7 Lion will be a major change for most users.
- And they no doubt do since we don’t even have a release date and they have already shown off a lot [↩]