Roundup of OS X Mountain Lion Reviews: 'Faster and Smoother', 'Incremental', 'Bargain at Twice the Price'

mountainlionWith Apple having launched OS X Mountain Lion to the public today, reviews of the company's latest Mac operating system have begun pouring in. Many of the reviews are quite extensive, but we've selected a few choice excerpts to highlight general reaction to the release.

- John Siracusa, Ars Technica

The Mac is a platform in transition. In Lion, OS X began shedding the well-worn trappings of traditional desktop computing at an accelerated rate. This trend continues in Mountain Lion. Where Lion stumbled, Mountain Lion regroups and tries again—while still forging bravely ahead in other areas.

As the second major refinement-focused release, it's easy to view OS X 10.8 as "what 10.7 should have been." The flip side of this argument is that the real-world mileage we’ve all put on Lion has helped Apple make the right kinds of adjustments in Mountain Lion. If we'd had to wait for two years after 10.6 for the next major release of OS X, chances are good that the worst of the missteps in Lion would just be landing on our doorsteps today. I'll take 10.8, thanks.

- Jason Snell, Macworld

All told, I found Mountain Lion to be a stable, solid release. Even prerelease builds were far more stable than I’ve come to expect from OS X betas, leading me to wonder if Apple’s new annual schedule is leading to more careful incremental updates (with fewer bugs) rather than great leaps (with more, nastier bugs).

- Nilay Patel, The Verge

Ultimately, this is pretty easy: you should spend the $20 and upgrade to Mountain Lion, especially if you have a newer Mac. You’ll gain a handful of must-have features, and everything will get faster and smoother. I haven’t really missed Snow Leopard at all since upgrading, which is remarkable considering how much I disliked Lion.

os x mountain lion macbook air imac
- Brian Heater, Engadget

Taken as a whole, the features mark a fairly aggressive bid to fold the best of OS X and iOS into one product -- a strategy we first saw with the introduction of the Mac App Store on Snow Leopard, and with the arrival of Launchpad last year in Lion. [...]

That said, it seems time for Apple to make a bold new pronouncement on the desktop front. The company appears to have most of its resources invested in the mobile side -- and there's no question as to why: the iPhone and iPad have reinvigorated the company, making it a computing player on a scale that no one (save, perhaps, for Jobs himself) could have predicted a decade ago. Still, it might be hard for OS X users not to feel neglected -- many of the latest new features feel a bit like iOS hand-me-downs. When and if Apple rolls out a new operating system this time next year, hopefully we'll be seeing a very different side of Mac OS.

- Jim Dalrymple, The Loop

There will be tens of thousands of words published on Wednesday when Mountain Lion hits the Mac App Store, but let’s face it, what you really want to know is whether Mountain Lion is worth the upgrade. Let’s get that out of the way now — yes, it is definitely worth it.

Mountain Lion costs $19.99 and comes with more than 200 new features — that’s a bargain at twice the price.

os x mountain lion banner
- Jesus Diaz, Gizmodo

If Apple doesn't want Microsoft to steal their innovation crown with Windows 8 Metro, they urgently need a new vision that breaks with this unholy mix of obsolete 1980s user interface heritage and iOS full screen skeumorphism.

It feels like Apple has run out of ideas. Or worse, that Apple is too afraid to implement new concepts, fearing it will kill the company's golden goose. Too afraid to change the world once again, as Steve Jobs used to say, one desktop at a time.

- MG Siegler, TechCrunch

It must be said that Mountain Lion isn’t really all that different from Lion — hence, the variation of the name (even though mountain lions are technically cougars — insert joke here). But unlike the jump from Leopard to Snow Leopard, which focused on performance and tightening code rather than features, the jump from Lion to Mountain Lion does pack some new goodies. [..]

In a time when Microsoft is just about to upend their entire OS with their biggest change (and bet) yet in Windows 8, Apple has taken a much more refined approach. Perhaps they take some criticism for this, or perhaps they’re just being savvy. OS X remains a great OS, and sprinkled with some of the best elements of iOS, it still feels pretty fresh. Not bad for an eleven year old big cat.

Top Rated Comments

KPOM Avatar
124 months ago
Disagree with Gizmodo. Windows 8 is a nice idea, but man it's going to confuse the living heck out of lots of casual Windows users. (Like the secretaries in my office. I feel bad for our IT department.)

Gizmodo has been anti-Apple ever since the company sued them and banned them from media events (after Gizmodo refused to return a stolen iPhone 4 prototype). Apple could create a fountain of youth and Gizmodo would complain that it only adds 10 years to your life instead of 20.
Score: 127 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mac21ND Avatar
124 months ago
Disagree with Gizmodo. Windows 8 is a nice idea, but man it's going to confuse the living heck out of lots of casual Windows users. (Like the secretaries in my office. I feel bad for our IT department.)
Score: 78 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pmz Avatar
124 months ago
I mean the Gizmodo people are right. Apple is out of ideas. Take a look at any real fundamental differences between Leopard and Mountain Lion. The only difference is black/white UI, speed improvements, and an attempt to synergize Mac OSX and iOS. With mountian lion, they have added all the possible iOS things in Mac OSX. Besides more security and speed improvements, they are out of ideas.

Furthermore, the difference in iOS 5 to iOS 6 further show this. They have no ideas that they are forced to make the UI (especially in phone) look bad. Also, besides Passbook, there is nothing groundbreaking.

Same with Microsoft as well. There was nothing they could do to improve Windows 7 so they had to start from scratch. I personally like Windows 7 type of productivity better. But if they stuck that route, like Apple they would have no ideas. No point of fixing something that aint broke.

The fact is it just seems there is a technological road block.
Gizmodo is a pathetic joke, and is so your attempt to look like you understand and agree with their fake sentiment.
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pmz Avatar
124 months ago
No interest in reading reviews from a bunch of know-it-all hacks that think Snow Leopard is the great thing since Atari and thought that Lion was, in a word, flawed.

I despise anyone who believes Lion is in anyway meaningful way, "flawed"

Lion is nearly OS perfection, and Mountain Lion is the sequel. It's not "incremental" in anyway, it nearly doubles the feature set of Lion while improving every addition that came with Lion.

Out of ideas? Get a life people.
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SpiderDude Avatar
124 months ago
Let's use flashy words

"Uh uh, skeumorphism this and skeumorphic that."
They finally came up with a fancy word to throw back at Apple.

Also, please bring back the downvoting. I'm pretty sure lot's of people wouldn't agree with what I said...

Mac'on
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jasonxneo Avatar
124 months ago
best os to date

I beg to differ :o
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

AirPods Pro Gen 3 Mock Feature Red

AirPods Pro 2 Could Start a New Accessory Ecosystem

Friday January 14, 2022 2:34 am PST by
Apple's second-generation AirPods Pro could arrive alongside a new series of accessories, recent leaked images suggest. Alleged leaked photos of the next-generation AirPods Pro obtained by MacRumors showed a charging case with a metal loop on the side for attaching a strap. Apple has not used this design for any of its other AirPod models and it is unclear why it would be added in this...
netflix2

Netflix Again Raises Prices for All Plans, 4K Streaming Now $20 Per Month

Friday January 14, 2022 12:46 pm PST by
Netflix today updated the prices for its streaming plans, and all of its offerings are now more expensive. The Basic plan is now priced at $9.99 per month, the Standard plan is priced at $15.49 per month, and the Premium plan is priced at $19.99 per month. The Basic plan is $1 more expensive, up from $8.99 per month. This plan allows users to watch on just one screen at a time, and it limits ...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole 16x9 120hz

Analyst: All iPhone 14 Models to Feature 120Hz Displays, 6GB of RAM, and More

Friday January 14, 2022 7:02 am PST by
Apple is rumored to announce four new iPhone 14 models in September, and ahead of time, analyst Jeff Pu has outlined his expectations for the devices. In a research note with Haitong International Securities, obtained by MacRumors, Pu claimed that all iPhone 14 models will feature ProMotion displays, compared to only Pro models currently. ProMotion enables a variable refresh rate up to 120Hz ...
Unlikely Products 2022 Feature

Six Rumored Apple Products You're Unlikely to See This Year

Saturday January 15, 2022 2:06 pm PST by
Much has been said about what consumers could see from Apple in 2022, but the company is also working on a handful of rumored products that aren't expected to be unveiled for at least another 12 months, and in some cases a lot longer. Of course, that's assuming they get released at all. Apple works on many potential products some of which ultimately never see the light of day. With that in...
top stories 20220115

Top Stories: iPhone 14 Pro Rumors, iCloud Private Relay Controversy, iOS 15.2.1 Released, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 6:00 am PST by
Hole-punch? Pill? Hole-punch and pill? Rumors about what the front camera system on the iPhone 14 Pro will look like are evolving rapidly, and it now appears we might be getting a novel but potentially controversial design later this year. Other major stories this week included some confusion and controversy about iCloud Private Relay being disabled for some T-Mobile customers, increasing...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
iPad Pro Big Ol Logo Orange

Next iPad Pro Might Feature Large Glass Apple Logo to Allow Wireless Charging

Friday January 14, 2022 10:44 am PST by
Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu last year reported that Apple had tested a new iPad Pro with a glass back for wireless charging capabilities. In a recent edition of his newsletter, Gurman said he expects the new iPad Pro to be released in 2022. While the new iPad Pro is still on track to feature wireless charging, 9to5Mac's Filipe Espósito today reported that Apple may have ultimately...
ipad air 4 video

New iPad Air Rumored to Launch This Spring With A15 Chip, 5G, Center Stage Camera, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 8:05 pm PST by
Apple is planning to release a fifth-generation iPad Air with similar features as the sixth-generation iPad mini, including an A15 Bionic chip, 12-megapixel Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage support, 5G for cellular models, and Quad-LED True Tone flash, according to Japanese blog Mac Otakara. Citing reliables sources in China, the report claims that the new iPad Air could be...