Apple to Ship Mac OS X ‘Tiger’ on April 29

From the press release:

Tiger has more than 200 new features and innovations including Spotlightâ„¢, a revolutionary desktop search technology that lets users instantly find anything stored on their Mac, including documents, emails, contacts and images; and Dashboard, a new way to instantly access important information like weather forecasts and stock quotes, using a dazzling new class of applications called widgets.

Spotlight is Apple’s new lightning fast way for users to find virtually anything stored on their Mac. Much like users can instantly find songs in iTunes® by name, artist or album, Spotlight searches the contents inside documents and information about those documents, or metadata, to find just about anything—emails, contacts, appointments, images, PDFs, and almost any type of document, including Microsoft Office documents—then automatically organizes and instantly displays the results. Because Spotlight technology is built right into the core of the operating system, it automatically updates results instantly whenever files change and enables developers to incorporate Spotlight technology into their applications.  Apple has incorporated Spotlight search technology into several Tiger applications including Mail, Address Book, Finder and System Preferences, and several third party developers are expected to introduce applications with Spotlight search technology in the coming months. 

Dashboard is a new world of beautiful accessory applications called widgets that appear instantly to give users immediate access to information like stock quotes, weather forecasts, airline flight tracking, unit of measure, currency conversions and a phone book. With a single click a user’s favorite Dashboard widgets instantly appear with up to the second information; with another click they’re instantly gone and the user is right back to where they left off.  Tiger ships with 14 widgets, and because Dashboard is based on standard web technologies such as HTML and JavaScript, it’s easy for third party developers to create new widgets that users can easily add to their Dashboards.

iChat in Tiger supports the stunning new H.264 video codec for dramatically better picture quality over the same Internet bandwidth. Users can now create audio conferences with up to 10 people and video conferences with up to four people in a 3D virtual conference room, just as if they were all seated together at a table*. In addition, contacts on a Buddy List can now see which iTunes song a user is playing and view it in the iTunes Music Store with just one click.

The new Automator workflow application lets users easily automate repetitive tasks without complex programming. Users simply select from a library of more than a hundred customizable actions and drag and drop them to create an automated workflow, specifically tailored to suit their requirements. Once created, workflows can be saved and even shared with friends and colleagues.

A full featured RSS reader is built into Safariâ„¢ to provide instant access to the most current information from leading news organizations, community web sites and even personal weblogs (blogs) directly from the browser. Multiple RSS feeds can be merged into one easy-to-read interface to create a user’s own personal news clipping service.

Other new features in Tiger include:

  • QuickTime 7, the latest version of Apple’s standards-based media player, with H.264 support, live video resizing, zero-configuration streaming and extensive surround sound;
  • Mail 2, a dramatically enhanced new version of the Mac OS X built-in Mail application with a new user interface, Spotlight searching, .Mac syncing and full screen slideshow;
  • iCal 2, with support for birthday calendars, calendar groups, improved printing and Spotlight and Automator functions;
  • Font Book 2, the updated font management utility included in Mac OS X that now supports libraries for installing fonts anywhere on the system or network; and
  • a completely new .Mac sync preference using Xsync, a new sync engine built into Mac OS X that enables .Mac subscribers to automatically synchronize their Safari bookmarks, iCal appointments, Address Book contacts, Keychain passwords and Mail settings across multiple computers.