Coupled with the company’s netbook-inspired and Flash memory-based ultralight MacBook Airs, the newly unveiled plans suggest the company is readying a new approach to PC sales that’s modeled on its successful reinventions of the tablet and smartphone markets.
“Apple is taking some of the things that have worked well for it in the mobile space and applying it back to the Mac,” said Avi Greengart, an analyst with research firm Current Analysis. “Where that is most obvious is the software — with the app store and gestures.”
Apple previewed Mac OS X Lion, which blends elements of Apple’s mobile operating system iOS into the Mac. Lion is scheduled for release in early 2011.
Like the iOS-powered iPhone and iPad, Macs running Lion will gain access to an app store for third-party Mac software and new multitouch gestures.
That marks a significant shift in the way PC software is sold, said Forrester Research analyst Sarah Rotman Epps.
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