Mac OS Surpasses Linux in Popularity Amongst Developers

  • Apple’s Mac operating system has reportedly edged past Linux in popularity amongst developers in North America.
  • Windows OS remains the clear frontrunner for development with 80 percent of developers. However, while 5.6 percent of developers said they prefer Linux, Mac OS has taken second place with 7.9 percent.
  • “Apple has made tremendous strides in the last few years with innovative products and technologies. [As such], it’s quite reasonable to see developers adopting the Mac and its OS as a development environment,” explains Evans Data CEO Janel Garvin. “Linux has lost some of its luster after years of only single digit adoption.”
  • Mac OS X is based on the Unix operating system. The latest iteration — Mac OS X Lion version 10.7 — features a redesigned UI to help bridge Apple’s iOS for mobile devices and Mac OS for desktop computers.

Review: Apple Lion Operating System by Walt Mossberg

  • Walt Mossberg offers his take on the new Lion OS, what he coins as Apple’s “most radical new Macintosh operating system version in years.”
  • The $30 operating system, released this week, allows installation on as many Macs as an individual owns.
  • Mossberg describes the OS as “a giant step in the merger of the personal computer and post-PC devices like tablets and smartphones,” while retaining traditional computer features.
  • The thorough review provides details related to upgrading, migrating, new features and more.
  • Although he questions the changes made to scrolling (which work the opposite of previous versions by pushing the page up), Mossberg provides a positive bottom line: “The past two major computer operating system releases, Windows 7 and Snow Leopard, were incremental. Lion is very different. It’s a big leap, and gives the Mac a much more modern look and feel for a world of tablets and smartphones. If you are willing to adjust, it’s the best computer operating system out there.”

Lenovo to Launch Three New Tablet Devices

  • Chinese manufacturer Lenovo is entering the tablet fray with three new devices set for release in the coming months.
  • The 10.1-inch devices will be priced comparably to the popular iPad and will target specific users (the IdeaPad Tablet K1 for general consumers, ThinkPad Tablet for business users, and IdeaPad Tablet P1 for home and office use).
  • The IdeaPad K1 and ThinkPad (available in August) will run Android 3.1, while the IdeaPad P1 will run Windows 7.
  • All three devices will initially be Wi-Fi only, with 3G versions expected at a later date.
  • The Digital Trends post includes images and technical specs on all three models.

Android OS Could Prove Big Business for Microsoft

  • Android is the global leader in smartphone platforms with over 500,000 daily activations, serving as an obvious advantage for Google.
  • However, Android’s success is also becoming a boon for Microsoft, which has negotiated agreements with several Android licensees to settle patent infringement claims, providing $5-10 for each device shipped.
  • With the potential of 500,000 activations per day, this could amount to $1 billion in value to Microsoft.
  • This amount would exceed the value of their Windows 7 and Bing businesses currently.

HP CEO Leo Apotheker Discusses New Online Strategy

In his first public appearance since joining Hewlett-Packard in November, CEO Leo Apotheker delivered a speech in San Francisco that outlined the company’s new online strategy that he explained will target both consumers and businesses. Apotheker emphasized cloud computing and an online app store as part of his vision to bring HP to the forefront as “the platform for the cloud and connectivity.” He suggested that the app store would include programs from HP as well as from other companies.

Apotheker dismissed speculation that HP would be acquiring software maker SAP AG or any other provider of transactional business programs. The Wall Street Journal reports that his goal is to address the “increasing amount of unstructured data — information that isn’t easily categorized”; HP will “focus on products and services that will help businesses better make sense of them.”

Apotheker explained that the company’s webOS operating system (newly acquired along with Palm last year) is designed for smartphones and tablets, but will also ship on HP PCs, providing the company with a greater scale. HP plans to produce laptops and desktops with webOS working alongside Windows, enabling computers to interact with HP’s smartphones and tablets.

The Battle Heats Up over Alpha Android

The battle for control of Google’s phone/tablet OS continues to heat up. In this Bloomberg Businessweek article, developers complain about Google’s increasing demands for control over how its supposedly “open source” Android platform is deployed. One protester says he just cut a deal with Microsoft because he feels Windows Phone 7 offers more opportunity to innovate (he is, at this point, in the minority, as well as a former MS employee, but it pays to keep an eye on the outliers).

Bloomberg reports that Google has recently reached out to carriers and manufacturers that want to implement its mobile operating system with a message: “There will be no more willy-nilly tweaks to the software. No more partnerships formed outside of Google’s purview. From now on, companies hoping to receive early access to Google’s most up-to-date software will need approval of their plans. And they will seek that approval from Andy Rubin, the head of Google’s Android group.”

Perhaps the most telling bit of information in this story is that Android’s share of the smartphone market grew, “from 9 percent in 2009 to an industry-leading 31 percent worldwide.”

“I don’t think we’ve seen anything like Android in terms of gaining share,” explained Bill Gurley, general partner at venture capital firm Benchmark Capital.

Although there are grumblings from various tech companies, and rumors of complaints to the Justice Department, Bloomberg explains that the Android OS is still open — “it’s just getting more heavily policed.”