Apple to Unveil OS X 10.7 on 20th October

Apple today announced a new media event, due to be held in six days on the 20th October. Called “Back to the Mac”, it signals the focus of the presentation will be upon OS X, and Apple’s Mac hardware lineup. If you’ve become a little tired of the successive stream of iPhone, iPad and iOS announcements over the past 12 months, now’s a good time to start getting excited!

The invitation states “Come see what’s new for the Mac on October 20, including a sneak peek of the next major version of Mac OS X.” I’ll be taking a look at what the announcement is likely to cover after the break!

Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion”

It’s clear to see from the invitation that Apple is planning to usher in the age of the lion (that’s a lion behind the door, right?), with aspects of the presentation dedicated to talking about the next major release of the OS X operating system.

Specifics of what OS X 10.7 will include – or when it will be released – are few and far between, so there’s plenty of scope to surprise us all next Wednesday.

The latest incarnation of OS X – Snow Leopard – was more of an incremental improvement over Leopard than a major overhaul. It slimmed the operating system down, making things leaner, faster, and generally a little bit smarter all round. But we didn’t see many major additions or changes.

The general consensus seems to be that, this time around, Apple will be going for something considerably bigger. We’re likely to see a few flagship features touted heavily, and plenty of further enhancements under the hood.

Many people are expecting a unified overhaul of the OS X interface – something that I’m excited about, and fearful of, in equal measure. It’ll be fascinating to see whether this materialises and, if so, what Apple has up their sleeve to make the media gasp.

10.7 Is Already Out There…

The very first visitor to AppStorm running OS X 10.7 hit the site in January 2010 – almost ten months ago. In line with what TechCrunch reported earlier today, we’ve started to see visitor numbers from this OS gradually increase in recent months.

…But Be Prepared to Wait

Last time Apple offered a preview of an operating system before it’s release, we had to wait a full year before it actually hit the shelves. Whether we’ll see the same wait this time remains to be seen, but it’s certainly likely to be at least six months before you can actually get your hands on 10.7.

Updated Hardware?

Along with a preview of the next version of OS X, there’s a chance we’ll see some updated hardware announced. This would be good timing for the holiday season, helping to spur sales for Apple in the run-up to Christmas and Thanksgiving.

There’s no doubt that the spotlight has been on iOS for the past few months. The latest Mac hardware updates came on the 27th July in the form of updated iMac, Mac Pro and Cinema Display lineups. That’s quite a while ago!

We haven’t seen any major revisions to the MacBook lineup for a while, so there’s a good chance we’ll see an updated MacBook Air, or tweaks to MacBook/MacBook Pro models.

Speculate Away!

So what do you think we’ll be seeing announced next week? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments on new OS X 10.7 features and potential hardware changes. Let’s see whether we can guess a few of the surprises correctly!

Personally, I won’t be satisfied unless Steve’s “one more thing” turns out to be an actual, real-life lion…


Add Yours
  • Sounds cool. question: *If* ilife 11, iwork 11, and mac 10.7 is introduced, how would the software package work. Right now its about 200 Can. … Would the 3 pack wait until the new os is out, or will they included updated iLife and iWorks with snow leopard?

    • I would think it’d be compatible with 10.6 & 10.7 if they were to release it.

  • Another rumor I heard was that the 13″ MacBooks (both Pro & regular) would get updated processors, likely i5 or i3. Both 13″ models still sport Core 2 Duos.

  • All of the hardware that Apple has put out recently has been to do with multitouch especially with the Magic Mouse and Trackpad, I would be shocked if 10.7 didn’t include something big to do with that, be that making better use of those within the OS, or something new and exciting.

    Also I would expect to see a greater connection with the cloud in someway, I’m not 100% sure what exactly that would look like, however Apple were hiring along those lines back in June (

    • Maybe the OS will be fully touch compatible along with an SDK for touch?

      • that’ll fit well with those rumors about touch-enabled iMacs

    • keep the hardware keyboard, please.

  • Would love to see addition of BD drives in all the macs, but doubt that will happen.

  • loved the “Steve’s “one more thing” turns out to be an actual, real-life lion…”
    rofl!! good one!

    • …and lets it loose upon the unsuspecting bloggers who are “ruining” the experience by live blogging it to their not so beautiful streams?

  • I’m guessing touch-screen iMacs and MacBooks. Although I don’t think I’d use one, personally.

    • I’ve got enough paw prints on my MacBook screen, I really don’t need to add any extra with a touch screen! If they do I would hope they have added some fantastic fingerprint resistant technology.

  • No 10.7 guys, just iWork and iLife 11. Mark my words.

    • I doubt that we will get 10.7 to buy next week, however we’ll get a preview, I agree that iLife and iWorks will be there, however why on earth would they put the image of the Lion behind the logo if not to hint at 10.7

    • I hope you are right… I bought my Macbook Pro 2 weeks ago.

    • Did you just decide to not read this “The invitation states “Come see what’s new for the Mac on October 20, including a sneak peek of the next major version of Mac OS X.” I’ll be taking a look at what the announcement is likely to cover after the break!” ?

      You will see 10.7 and you can’t argue that. It won’t be released on the 20th but you’ll see a preview of it.

  • I bet one thing is going to be new displays for Macbook / iMac lines. Could someone imagine how amazing would be to have the retina display on a Macbook? I’d love to. But the hardware will have a hard work then.. If that happens, I’ll try to sell my Mbook Pro the other day!

    • Hardware problem is one part, the other part is that no web sites are optimized for that resolution, all websites will be small as fuck.

  • I’m thinking face-time through ichat… allows you to connect with iphone + ipod touch… and later on even the ipad. Also iWork needs an update soon, to stay relevant, as Microsoft office is scheduled for an update within the next month.
    Touch screen iMac would be a shock… i doubt it.

  • It might sound a little off topic, but I hope they improve the current i5 performance. At least, in my shiny new 2010 MBP, things run terribly slow. Memory ‘vanishes’ in a snap as soon as you opened a few pages and programs.

    I don’t know if anybody suffers the same issue, but my i5 machine is SLOW, slower than my previous MBP c2d. I’m not liking it at all.

    I hope this get fixed with this new version of OS or at least a new update for Snow Leopard.

  • How do you get notifications from apple about new conferences? I’d love to get them too!

  • Hi feel that they will release something around iWorks, iLife with the great reviews about the new Office for mac.

  • Looking forward to the day, when Apple acquires dropbox and you get the same amount of space in the cloud as the size of the hard drive in your new mac. You’d never have to worry about any files again.

    …or maybe even the day when all the memory you have in your computer is RAM (We’re talking serious bandwith on your internet connection, i know), but that would be cool!

    Maybe I got a little carried away here :)

  • I heard there will sharks with friggin’ laser beams attached to their heads included with all new Mac laptop .

  • i hope they just make it so my bluetooth doesn’t crash every time my magic mouse doesn’t wake up. really. that’s enough for me. a snow leopard 2 would be great. oh, and search to actually finds stuff. at the end of the day, the os just manages files. just make that incrementally better, and remove bugs, and i will be happy. oh… i guess that doesn’t make for much of an exciting press conference – it just makes for happy users.

  • I can’t imagine any really big hardware changes to be announced, probably just some more incremental processor upgrades or video card upgrades/options. I think I will upgrade my 24″ imac to the 27″ when standard ram memory gets boosted to 8 gigs, which probably won’t be until a year from now. That being said, I am quite happy with my hardware, and that any of my “needs” to upgrade are more likely “wants” ;)

  • Not sure how feasible this is but I heard a rumor about a year ago that Apple was working on creating solar powered hardware. How freakin crazy would that be to have a solar powered MacbookPro, haha. Nuts! Don’t see that happening anytime soon, but introducing retina displays is pretty likely, and of course upgraded processors which is a given.