Apple today introduced the latest version of OS X, Yosemite, at the World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC), being held June 2-6 in San Francisco, CA.
Key new features include:
- The UI has been streamlined, making it more iOS-like, but not a shocking change;
- iCloud Drive is located within the Finder and lets you store any type of file and share it across devices;
- Handoff lets you start an activity on one device and pass it to the other; and
- Instant Hotspot makes using your iPhone’s hotspot as easy as connecting to a Wi-Fi network.
In addition to an updated UI, Yosemite features several key features that may have special interest to musicians:
- Mail Drop allows you to easily send large videos, images or files up to 5 GB from the Mail app to any email address. This could be very handy for collaborating with other musicians and sending media files to vendors or clients.
- Messages – Now you can add titles to ongoing message threads so they are easy to find, add new contacts to ongoing conversations, or leave those conversations you no longer want to follow. With ‘Soundbites’ you can create, send and listen to audio clips right in Messages.
- iCloud Drive – sort of a built-in Dropbox, it’s designed for easy sharing between OS X, iOS & Windows. It works like any other folder on a Mac, so you can drag documents into it, organize them with folders and Tags and search for them using Spotlight.
- Airdrop now lets you easily share files wirelessly between iOS and OS X.
- Continuity – ‘Proximity awareness’ lets your devices sense each other. When your iPhone or iPad is near your Mac, Handoff lets you start an activity on one device and pass it to the other. Instant Hotspot makes using your iPhone’s hotspot as easy as connecting to a Wi-Fi network. Now the SMS and MMS messages that previously only appeared on your iPhone appear in Messages on all your devices. You can even send SMS or MMS messages directly from your Mac and make or receive iPhone calls, using your Mac as a speakerphone.
As with Mavericks, Yosemite will be a free release, coming in the Fall. It’s also going to be available as an open beta.