Apple has announced that it will be bringing multiplayer gaming support between iPad, iPhone, and the desktop in the next version of the company's latest operating system, Apple OS X Mountain Lion, when it launches later this summer.
Demoing the new tech, which is apart of the developer preview of the new OS, to Pocket-lint at a behind-closed-doors, one-to-one briefing, Apple showed off how iPad users will in the future be able to play games such as Reckless Racing 2 against Mac desktop users - even though they are on two different operating systems and two very different devices.
The new gaming feature has been enabled by introducing Apple's Game Center service to the desktop version of its operating system.
In our demo of Game Center running on Mountain Lion we were shown two gamers playing against each other, both connected via Game Center over a standard Wi-Fi connection. Apple were keen to point out though that the two devices don't need to be on the same wireless connection or even near each other.
It works in the same way as multiplayer gaming does already with Game Center on the iPad, iPod, and iPhone and we could easily see it becoming popular with games like Words with Friends.
It's not the first cross-platform gaming initiative. Microsoft many years ago introduced PC to Xbox multiplayer gaming, but the system failed to catch on with developers shunning the idea. Apple hopes that won't be the case here and that games developers will see the new feature as a way to enhance not only the gaming experience on the iPad, iPod and iPhone, but also to bring more games to the desktop.
Game Center for Moutain Lion doesn't just bring multiplayer gaming though, the hugely popular service already available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, with more than 100 million registered users, will add the ability to alert friends that want to play a game, leaderboards, achievements, and more.
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 that want to get started with the new features, can do so via the Apple OS X Mountain Lion developer preview out on Thursday 16 February.