Let’s face it! The latest release from Apple’s stable of OSs is not an enticer. When Apple tried to squeeze the phone and tablet functionality into a Mac OS, it also had to sacrifice a few other well-loved features. Spaces and Expose. Also with the introduction of mobile-like apps into its laptop OS, Apple has tried to make the apps work like they work on a phone or a tablet – which explains the fullscreen concept. That’s perfectly fine but they forgot one crucial thing – users are OK with full screen apps on a tablet or phone because they open the app for one reason and they are bound to be focussed on that app. But laptop users like to multitask- a LOT. Which is why fullscreen apps might not be the best idea for a laptop.
Why? Some writers in the media world are even dubbing the Lion as the Vista of Apple. But Apple is still looking set a getting away with a few gaffes and will most likely become a Smash-hit. Here’s why:
1) Stability & Interoperability
One of the reasons why Vista was a huge flop was the fact that interoperability was a huge issue. While Microsoft should have fixed the dll issues with its hardware parts manufacturers, it didn’t. Also the fact that Microsoft boldly positioned Vista as a plug and play OS while half of the peripherals were struggling to either work or triggered BSODs which had us pulling our hair out. Apple has never had that issue because it has a tightly controlled hardware ecosystem and they squarely place the interoperability issues on the shoulders of the peripheral makers than take it on themselves. Also as a bottom-line improvement technique, they manufacture a small range of accessories themselves which work seamlessly with their hardware – and encourage their customers to buy these accessories. Even if the accessories cost an arm and a leg.
2) Integration with the iPhone and iPad
While the Lion might have tried to bring a number of successful features on the iPhone and the iPad to the Macbook… and failed, the the Lion OS definitely does a decent job integrating all the three devices. Each of the devices serve different purposes and Apple is the only tech company in the current situation who have found reasonable success in all three forms of hardware. You can’t blame them for trying to integrate and they are taking the right path by doing so. Just because it currently has some flaws doesn’t mean that it is a complete failure. The company is well known for its Delta Updates and they’ll try to mend whats not working well. Also I am aware of a number of users who want to buy a Macbook just because their iPhones/iPads integrate better.
Apple in their WWDC demonstrated how seamlessly their iCloud worked. To give you a simple example, take a picture on your iPhone and immediately see it on your connected devices without having to run a back-up. And its all FREE till you reach a 5 GB limit. This is a neat little feature and once users get used to this luxury, there is no way they’ll feel comfortable in another OS. Worse, they’ll expect Windows and Linux to also come up with similar features. It is even more crucial for a business user – With the advent of the cloud, they can start work on a notes document on their iPad, pick up where they left off on a laptop and finish this document on an iPhone all with no extra cost of buying the Apple Office Suite between multiple devices. Cloud will form a major part of the reason why consumers will want to buy a Lion OS enabled device or upgrade.
4) Is there a choice?
Frankly, is there? A lot of consumers went back to a Windows XP when their Vista did not work and Microsoft’s clear separation between the OS and the hardware made sure that there were a gazillion different pirated versions of the Windows 98, 98SE, XP etc., floating around and users found it extremely easy to grab their favourite version of the OS and re-install it.
All MacBooks will sport the Lion OS the day it launches and even as of today, Snow Leopard stocks are dwindling in numbers on the retail shelves and a couple of weeks from the release date of the Lion OS, you can bet your ass that you won’t find a single copy of the Snow Leopard to buy. Yes, people who’ve already bought the Snow Leopard can roll back but Apple’s Lion issues are not THAT annoying for someone to perform a roll back.
5) Price & Version
I’ve reserved the best reason for the last – THE PRICE and VERSION. Windows even today confuses their consumers with an ENTERPRISE version, a BUSINESS version, a PREMIUM version, HOME & STUDENT version and a barebones version which is just not worth it. Apple on the other hand, have had only ONE single version and that had everything they wanted to put out on the market.
Consumers bought their business edition Vistas for a total cost price of $462.00 and needlessly to say they went mad with rage when they saw what was under the hood. In comparison, Apple sold their last OS – Snow Leopard for 129.00 and with the Lion they’re dropping it at a jaw-dropping $29.00 available to download straight from their app store. Those who do not have a fast download facility can just drop into their Apple stores to download it free of bandwidth cost. This is the lowest price any OS has been released in the market and there is no way Apple/non-Apple users will be able to ignore this price. After all users can buy this OS if they save up on a couple of days of lunch money.
Now where is that darned release date already?