As expected, Apple released the latest version of its operating system, OS X Mavericks, at its event in San Francisco Tuesday. What wasn’t expected was Apple’s new Mavericks pricing model – for the first time, Apple is offering a major software update for free.
AirWatch will offer same-day support for both the new iPad Air and for devices running Mavericks, which Mac users can download today. The software update is compatible on devices ranging back to Apple’s 2007 iMac and MacBook Pro devices.
Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Craig Federighi showed of the capabilities of Mavericks on Apple’s new desktop, the Mac Pro, which includes substantial memory and processing updates and a significantly smaller, cylindrical chassis. Federighi demonstrated how iBooks works on a Mavericks device, noting how it can enhance productivity in the classroom. With iBooks, students can read interactive textbooks while simultaneously jotting down their thoughts in iNotes.
iWork, Apple’s response to Microsoft Office, has also seen a complete overhaul – logos and all. Mac OS X has already gained traction in the enterprise market, and Mavericks’ new enterprise-ready features will likely strengthen its position. iWork’s most significant change is that it now supports collaboration with iCloud. iWork for iCloud allows users to share and collaborate on content over the air, across devices, with support for URLs. Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, explained: “Now you can create a document on an iPad, edit it on a Mac, and even share it with a friend who’s stuck on a PC.” The iWork suite, which consists of Keynote, Numbers and Pages, is free with new Mac and iOS devices.
Following the iWork announcement, Tim Cook took the stage to discuss the iPad’s success. Since its introduction, Apple has sold 170 million iPads, and developers have created 475,000 iPad-specific apps. The latest iteration, the iPad Air, is 43 percent thinner than the traditional iPad, weighs in at just one pound and runs on the same 64-bit architecture as the iPhone 5S. The second-generation iPad mini now includes retina display. With its release, Apple introduced a new, lower price tag for the original iPad mini, which now sells for $299.