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Putting Leopard In The Broadband

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The Steve Jobs Show at WWDC’06 is finally over. All the name calling, new gear and fancy stuff aside, the big takeaway is that Mac OS X’s next version, Leopard is going to be one of the most complete OSes to leverage broadband connections, and even higher speed pipes available inside our home.

Stepping back, the new oomph Apple is putting into its computing hardware allows the users to run multiple applications. Almost all these apps (with the exception of older apps such as Microsoft Word and Excel, feed off the broadband pipe.

Each one incrementally demands more bandwidth. As many Mac users will get used to the new OS, they will also suddenly realize that the bandwidth allocated to them by the ISPs is not enough, and would opt for speed upgrades. (Just to clarify I am suggesting upgrades from sub- 1 Mbps budget offerings that cost below $20 a month, to the 3-to-10 Mbps packages that cost around $45 a month.)

While it might not be available for atleast six months, here are some initial thoughts:

Spotlight: Apple is giving Spotlight even more oomph. Has too – we are seeing the digital clutter in our lives just increase by the day. The drives are just getting better and of course we need better home network search technology.

“Spotlight was one of the great features of Tiger. We’re going to make Spotlight even better in Leopard. First thing we’re going to do is enable you to use Spotlight to search other machines.” This means that if you’re at home and you have several Macs in the house, you can search any of them. We’re also adding the ability to search servers and find exactly what you’re looking for.”

Enhanced Mail 3: “You send the most beautiful email messages you can ever imagine. You can keep track of them in a separate notes inbox.”

Bigger emails like the ones Steve is talking about need more bandwidth… a lot of it, in both directions, upstream and downstream.

Dashcode and Webclips: They turn everything into a little widget for the desktop.

From webcams to webpages now sit on the desktop, sipping from the broadband pipe, offering you the latest in real time. Again a bandwidth-using application.

The New iChat: The demoed iChat does streaming video, background sharing, photo and file sharing in realtime over the iChat connection. Again the increased use of this app is going to add to the need for more bandwidth.

Front Row: There are sketchy details on this, but their website says, you could watch videos and listen to music over your LAN/Wireless LAN. Needs further investigation. I have heard some interesting stuff around Front Row and some of it This ties in with our ongoing thesis that bandwidth inside the four walls of our homes is increasing faster than the connections to the Internet. You can read about it here and here.

Photos courtesy of : Apple
Show notes via Engadget/Live reporting by Ryan Block.

18 Responses to “Putting Leopard In The Broadband”

  1. I am not going to waste $129.00 on this Leopard crap. I am not even sure my Emac supports it. Here are my specs:
    Machine Name: eMac
    Machine Model: PowerMac4,4
    CPU Type: PowerPC G4 (2.1)
    Number Of CPUs: 1
    CPU Speed: 700 MHz
    L2 Cache (per CPU): 256 KB
    Memory: 512 MB
    Bus Speed: 100 MHz
    Boot ROM Version: 4.4.2f1
    Serial Number: G8224B7KLRX

  2. Unlike some of the comments, I think Om does some great work and deserves the funding.
    However this article is not one of his best! The points, if there are any (it’s not exactly clear to me), are not really related to Leopard.
    Basically, as we use more applications (on any OS) that access the internet, then our bandwidth requirements will increase – why does that relate specifically to Leopard?
    But does Leopard somehow handle multiple internet connections? or routing of traffic? Certainly the article didn’t mention it and even states that we will need a bigger pipe rather than more pipes. I don’t disagree or agree, but routing support for multiple interfaces might actually constitute ‘Broadband friendly’ – nothing that I saw in the article could be counted in that category.

    Perhaps Om has other things on his mind…

  3. JanSolo

    I predict with the release of Leopard, we will see a major comeback of the one protocol to unite them all – the amazing Appletalk and it’s dark lackey, the Chooser. I can forsee the market in NBP name squatting and I for one am going to jump on that before anyone else does.

    You read it here first.

  4. Yea where is that feature in the new OS – “Lower kiln-like temperatures on my laptop”? It was so painful to save up all that money for my first Mac laptop and then I just stare at it all day wondering when it is going to melt.

  5. I'm Special Like Om

    This is possibly the most hard-hitting faux journalism you’ve ever undertaken. You’re approaching Stone Phillips Lite territory.

    Sooner or later, Redmond is going to start their copier and rip off all these BROADBAND FEATURES.

    How is Leopard one iota more broadband friendly than Tiger? Because it has web clips and effing html mail with NEW AMAZINGLY INVENTED TEMPLATES?!

    Seriously, this is ridiculous. How did your fat dumb ass get funded? You’re spouting Krakow-level stupidity here, go write for a news daily you effing hack.

    I love OS X. Like every other OS I use, it uses broadband it has a fricking TCP/IP stack. Woaah! Write a column on that!

    Scoop the world Om, Leopard HAS TCP/IP BAKED RIGHT THE FUCK IN.

    What a tool.

  6. JanSolo

    There are two Om’s on this site. One has a foul mouth and spreads Apple hatred, while the other posts up pseudo news and somehow, magically got funding for his blog.

  7. Anonymous

    It’s funny to have a pole after a post entirely on OS X Leopard.

    (I actually didn’t quite get what you meant by “Broadband Friendly” so I just picked OS X to see the results).

  8. have faith

    I found it ironic that they made it seem like Vista copies Mac OS and then trot out a ton of features already available in XP. It was a particularly pathetic keynote. Someone bring back my beloved Steve Jobs.

  9. the new vs enhancement is a matter of semantics. if there are ample incremental improvements, then it is worth considering.

    i would buy this if say, they somehow manage to lower the heat generated by the lame ass macbook pros. i am quite frustrated right now about their shitty hardware.

  10. Apple is definitely leaning on broadband. It’s where the fun is at. Having photos and video on your computer is no longer good enough, it should be anywhere.

    Re: a new OS? I think the optimization for 64-bit is a big enough step to call it a new OS. It’s a point upgrade, not exactly a huge new fanfare like Vista (which had most of its cool stuff stripped out to meet the ship deadlines). The backup tech looks pretty slick too.

  11. i agree with you on keeping your wallet closed. i am done with spending any more money on apple shit as well. my macbook pro is the biggest lemon. it gets so hot, that is makes me smack someone on the head with it.

    still, it has some nice and seemingly nifty features – which would be nice to have. if the damn thing came for free. also – the finder thing, well i have given up on that and have been recommended a brand new app which is fantastic and makes finding easier.

  12. heyisforhorses

    I just don’t understand they consider this a new OS? This is an utter let down. New iChat? More widgets? Beautiful emails? What is Apple smoking? Hello! Finder? Is that team run by retards. Fix it you morons. Are we going to scrap the inconsistent UI any time soon? Is this some kind of joke. Ugh. My wallet is officially close to Apple until they get their mojo back.

  13. i think there are new enhancements coming in front row and the presentation might have glossed over the details on that. i think it is going to be using more of the home networking environment. just trying to pin down more details.

    i think the argument here is that they will improve it further to make it even more central to the digital home experience. so for now one way pulling might work, i bet you in the future it will need more bandwidth.

    on the new apps – take a look at ichat. when you have video transfers happening, and more and more web clips sitting on your desktop that are updating, it is all going to add up to the bandwidth needs. so the lame 512 or 768 megabit connection sold by DSL providers is not going to be enough. Instead of $15 a month, people are going to up their plans to bigger pipes. that is what i am trying to say.

  14. OM, a little confused here on a few points. The Mac OS has always been able to run multiple apps. OS X was built with great multi-tasking support. Right now I have Safari, Mail, TextMate, TextEdit, Photoshop, Transmit, Preview and Terminal open and running on my PowerBook.

    Secondly about Front Row… It has always been able to stream content over the network. I have a Mac Mini hoooked into my TV and it’s able to play music from any other computers on the network that have iTunes Sharing turned on. I use it to get music off my laptop, but when I have friends over all they have to do is open their computers up to be able to play on the big screen. Same with video, it is able to stream right off my PowerBook. I am using an 802.11g network and it works flawlessly.