The 10 Most Important Features In Mac OS X Lion

wwdc lion presentation

Photo: Dan Frommer, Business Insider

Apple finally launched its newest operating system, Mac OS X Lion today.It’s the first time Apple is offering a new OS as a direct download. There’s no need to go out and buy a disc like you had to in the old days.

If you’re still on the fence about making the upgrade, we gathered the top new features right here as a preview. Check them out below.

Better touch gestures

Almost everything in Lion will be controllable by touch. You can use a three-finger swipe to cycle through apps, double tap to zoom, or pinch to zoom. If you're used to using iOS, this should come naturally.

Full-screen apps, just like the iPad

Here's another feature that iPad and iPhone owners will love. Apple made it easy for developers to make their apps full screen. You can swipe through multiple full-screen apps using touch gestures. It looks good.

Mission Control organizes your apps

Mission control is Exposé meets Spaces. You can control all your work spaces from one easy panel. You can also activate Mission Control by swiping down with three fingers.

Mac App Store will be built in

Lion will ship with the Mac App Store. Mac apps will allow for push notifications, in-app purchases, and sandboxing.

Launchpad will store your apps

Launchpad is an iOS-like hub for all the apps you download from the App Store. You can activate it by clicking the app's icon or using a four-finger pinch gesture.

Resume saves your progress

If you close an app, it will open where you last left off. All you have to do is log in to Lion and you're good to go.

Auto Save will keep your documents backed up

Lion will automatically save all your work. You can also revert to last opened or other versions of the same file.

Versions will let you look at old files

Versions gathers all your autosaved documents and lets you look at all the previous versions. It's just like Time Machine but for individual documents.

Air Drop lets you share files

Air Drop is a built-in peer-to-peer file-sharing service. All you have to do is connect to the same Wi-Fi network and drag and drop the file to the computer you want to share with. There's no additional setup required, and all your data is encrypted.

Mail has a fresh new look

The new mail app looks a lot like the Mail app on the iPad. There's a two-column view with your inbox on the left and message preview on the right. It also has a conversations view, which shows you e-mails in the order you received them.

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