Mac users can expect even more iCloud integration on the Mac after the announcement that Apple will be putting the cloud storage service at the core of its next operating system, OS X Mountain Lion, when the new OS is released in the summer.
Although already available to desktop customers in basic form in OS X Lion, the new OS will be there from the moment you first setup up your computer and tap into a number of the Apple-issued apps, some of which will be coming to the desktop for the first time.
Designed to appeal to iPad, iPhone, or iPod users switching to the Mac for the first time, the new offering will automatically push your accounts, settings, and personal content to Mail, Contacts (the new name for Address Book), Calendars (the new name for iCal), Messages, FaceTime, Notes, Reminders, Game Center, Mac App Store, Documents and Safari bookmarks to your Mac so you’re ready to go with minimal set up.
That's certainly appealing to anyone who has had to mess around setting up a new laptop and means the flow of data between your devices will be even more flowing.
But where Apple is hoping to really let the new iCloud features shine is the systematic backup and availability of documents in its Pages app. Users will be able to instantly share, view, create and edit the same iCloud documents from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and your Mac.
"Any changes you make to a document on your Mac automatically show up when you open the document on another Mac or an iOS device and vice versa," Apple tells Pocket-lint. "With Documents in the Cloud, the latest document is available everywhere."
However, unlike Google's Chrome OS, users will still be able to access documents offline in their local folders be it on the computer or their phone or tablet. But it'd not just Pages that will get instant sharing and editing feature updates.
Apple has announced that it will be bringing Reminders, currently available only in iOS, to the desktop and breaking out Notes from its email app, Mail, to create its own separate app to link up with Notes on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod. Changes made on one will be reflected on other instances in the ecosystem you own.
The three apps look to be just the start, with Apple keen for other developers to tap into the new Documents in the Cloud feature.
"With the API, developers have an easy way to create document-based apps for OS X and iOS that give users access to the most up-to- date versions of their documents on all of their Macs or iOS devices. Third-party apps now have access to the Document Library to present and organise documents in a consistent way across the Mac, iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch."
The new feature is available in the latest version of Apple OS X Mountain Lion.
Apple has told Pocket-lint that the new features and new operating system, Apple OS X Mountain Lion, will be out in the summer. Developers who want to get started with the new features, can do so via the Apple Mac OS X Mountain Lion developer preview out on Thursday 16 February.
- For more news on the latest from Mac OS X Mountain Lion check out our dedicated Mac OS X homepage.
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