A Week With OS X Mavericks

by Ben Bajarin   |   June 28th, 2013

As I watched Apple announce and demonstrate many of the key new features in OS X Mavericks, I was continually struck with the same thought about the many features being shown. To me, they all seemed very useful.

In fact, the last few years it seems I have had the same feeling with each and every release. Each time its gets better and each time OS X gets even more useful features for desktop and notebook computer users. I’ve been using Mavericks for a week now and here are a few of my stand out experiences.

Surfing On Mavericks

Perhaps it is fitting that with this version of OS X named Mavericks, which is named after the epic big wave surf spot near Half Moon Bay, CA, Apple has released hands down the best web surfing experience on a Mac yet. The new Safari is noticeably faster. Which is saying something in an age of micro-second performance increases. Browsing the web simply feels snappy and quick.

Scrolling however, something we all do many times a day, is now super smooth and more like scrolling on an iPad or iPhone. Scrolling in this new version of Safari simply needs to be seen to be fully appreciated. I compared it to my other Mac running Lion and found that scrolling in Mavericks is noticeably smoother and more fluid. Making reading while scrolling feel like an entirely new experience.

Shared links is also a feature on the new Safari I found myself using more than I thought. I spend a lot of time on Twitter but not everything in my timeline is a link. I found myself using the shared links features to just filter what people I follow on Twitter are linking to.

Multiple Display Features

When I’m stationary at my home or work office, I use several monitors. I have a theory, the more monitors your use, the more productive you can be. It’s true for me at least. So it was no surprise to me, given my workflow, that I appreciate the new multiple display features.

In particular, the menu bars and docks are now available on all monitors, which is extremely handy. It may seem like a little feature but it’s actually a big deal in increasing efficiency of workflow when using multiple monitors. You kind of feel like you are using three actual Macs when in this multi-screen mode.

Another aspect of the new multiple display features I found quite useful was AirPlay display. This new feature lets you turn any TV connected with Apple TV into a secondary display. This has been extremely useful for me because I often work with others on presentations or data gathering in a collaborative environment. We do this through Apple TV connected to a TV in our conference room. Usually I just Airplay my display which will mirror my Mac’s screen to the TV. Now we can use the TV as a separate display to keep specific data on screen while we work collaborate on the other.

Interactive Notifications

When Apple added notifications to OS X, it was one of the features I was looking forward to the most. Yet once I started using them, I immediately felt it would be nice if I could delete an email or respond to one right from the notification.

After having and using interactive notifications on my developer preview of Mavericks, it is hard to imagine living without it. Chalk this up as a feature I hope comes to iOS notifications on iPad.

Overall Performance Increases

Apple lists several new features to Mavericks which they call “advanced features.” These advanced features, like app nap, timer coalescing, compressed memory, and more, are all designed to optimize the performance of your Mac. These optimizations lead to speedy and more responsive experiences with things like apps, the web, etc., but will also lead to better battery life gains.

I’ve been testing OS X Mavericks on a 13″ rMBP which is not my every day machine. I’d have liked to compare exact machines to quantify some battery life gains but I don’t have a second of the exact same machine. Some of these points are hard to quantify but I am including them to make an observation and propose a theory.

I’ve bought and moved to the new MacBook Air 13″ running Intel’s latest low power but high performance 4th generation core processor code named “Haswell” as my everyday machine and I’m running OS X Mountain Lion. Even without running OS X Mavericks the battery life I am getting on this Mac is profound and transformative. It is more than double what I was getting with my MacBook Air of two years ago. I’m planning a full article on my experience with this product but the bottom line is I can work all day in meetings, take notes, browse the web, etc., and I no longer need to worry about plugging in my notebook.

My theory is that OS X Mavericks is going to increase the battery life even more on this new MacBook Air–and all Apple notebooks for that matter–when it launches. The 2013 MacBook Air already has industry leading battery life and my guess is that OS X Mavericks will make it even better.

Overall, Apple is continuing their trend of adding new and useful features on an annual basis. But more importantly, in the grand scheme of things, OS X Mavericks represents Apple’s commitment to innovate uniquely for different form factors. Apple has drawn a line in the sand and stated with their actions that they believe software for the PC is different and should be treated different than software for tablets and smartphones. This does not mean all our screens are islands- quite the contrary. They share experiences and get more tightly integrated relationships in the multi-screen reality we live in. But it does mean that Apple is committed to delivering the best desktop and notebook computing experience possible. Mavericks represents this for Apple. Evolving computing is all about making computing accessible and enabling solutions that makes computing easy, effective, and convenient. Mavericks delivers on this promise.

When Mavericks comes out the experience scrolling with Safari and the advanced features leading to better system optimization and battery life alone will be worth it for me.

Ben Bajarin

Ben Bajarin is a Principal Analyst at Creative Strategies, Inc - An industry analysis, market intelligence and research firm located in Silicon Valley. His primary focus is consumer technology and market trend research. He is a husband, father, gadget enthusiast, trend spotter, early adopter and hobby farmer. Full Bio
  • FalKirk

    “OS X Mavericks represents Apple’s commitment to innovate uniquely for different form factors. Apple has drawn a line in the sand and stated with their actions that they believe software for the PC is different and should be treated different than software for tablets and smartphones…”

    Heartily agree. Touch input and pixel input are inherently incompatible. Microsoft, with Window 8, is paying the price for getting this wrong – but they don’t seem to be learning the lesson they have paid so dearly for.

    • dr.no

      but there are plenty of bloggers who keep
      using “but I want to touch the screen” when
      reviewing the MBA.
      At least Microsoft is training them with something.

      • benbajarin

        My thoughts on touch notebooks are such..

        I’ve tested a gamut of these devices and embedded them into my normal workflow using each compelling design as my main machine for a set time. I’m yet to find touching my notebook as a superior interface that increases efficiency or speed or convenience in my work flow.

        What it boils down to, in my opinion, is that a solid track pad experience is still superior to using touch as an interface replacement. Problem is many Windows notebooks have really crappy track pads. So it would seem like touching is a better experience when it really isn’t if all things were equal.

      • Defendor

        I don’t think there is any real value added in a touch screen laptop. It is a novelty and little more.

        A convertible that can actually have some actual tablet functionality can be some valued added functionality. But if usable as a laptop it will be quite heavy for many tablet scenarios.

        • JohnDoey

          Touch goes in the keyboard, not the display. iPad is a keyboard with a display in it, not a display with a keyboard on it. Touch goes under the hands, it belongs where the hands are. On a notebook, your hands are on the keyboard and trackpad. A touch Mac would need a new form factor. An iMac that lays flat, or a MacBook with screens in both sides and the lower one has touch. Also, the keyboard shortcuts and menus of the Mac would need to be redesigned. The V key in Photoshop does not type a V, it selects the pointer tool. If you have a touch Mac you just tap the pointer tool. The entire Mac keyboard stuff all breaks down. And on a touch Mac you want Final Cut to have a jog wheel. The hardware and OS and apps all need to be dramatically evolved for touch Macs.

    • Timmy

      I see two things happening: the race to the bottom, and an identity crisis.

      First, like with the Netbook before, we witness the run to the bottom. Cheap Windows 8 tablets are coming out, and it’s not about creating the best experience on each platform, like Microsoft perhaps wanted. The best experience is that interplay between software and hardware. But like with Netbooks, you get slow processors on cheap Windows 8 tablets, creating a not optimal hybrid “desktop” experience. Also you get thick tablets because of the heat dissipation of the X86 processor. But at least you can run you X86 apps, the crowd will say; yes, but how well?

      And then there’s the hybrid thing; you create devices that does one environment well for touch, the other sub par. You create a double identity. I believe people abandonned Netbook because they saw that the tablet created a better experience in that category. Do people want that sub-par hybrid experience? And Windows RT? Where does that sit when Windows 8 tablet will go below $300? Where’s the differentiation between Windows 8 and RT? That’s again confusion, which is so old PC.

      In the end, though, it’s up to companies to set the standard; it’s Apple’s and Microsoft’s task to spread the best computer experience to the people. And with Microsoft entering the computer hardware market, there’s something ambivalent about their position. On the one hand I see that they do want to spread the best experience possible with their Surface hardware — if only they forgo the old desktop. On the other hand, they still license Windows 8 and RT, so there’s still that race to the bottom that creates that bad user experience.

      • James King

        “I believe people abandonned Netbook because they saw that the tablet created a better experience in that category.” – Timmy

        It’s WAY more complicated than that. The reason netbooks went out of vogue is because the economics for them at the time didn’t work. As I’ve stated before, there was nothing wrong with netbooks that Moore’s Law wouldn’t fix. Bottom line, tablets had much better profit potential for companies. It also helped that most people really don’t need a great keyboard to have a satisfying computing experience.

        I have three computers in my home. One of them could definitely qualify as a modern “netbook,” my ASUS Vivobook X202e. It’s small, relatively light, has a great keyboard and has excellent performance for its value. I just put a Samsung 840 Pro SSD in it and it FLIES. I removed Windows 8 and placed Ubuntu on it and I couldn’t be happier. The original vision for the netbook has come full circle for me. I love having a real keyboard and I love actually being able to place a device on my lap without having to stare straight down at it or hold it up with two hands. The ergonomics of a laptop are more superior for me than a tablet. Netbooks just needed to grow up. Considering that the X202e is one of the best selling PCs on Amazon, I’d say that the death of netbooks is grossly exagerated.

        • JohnDoey

          Netbooks died because they sucked. Users expected them to be real PC’s and they were not. Manufacturers said just use then for Web and video. Users said in that case Inwill get an iPad. Then iPad grew up to where it can do much more — video editing, music, office work — and iPad is now replacing full-size notebooks, not just net books.

          • James King

            Netbooks were killed because they were cannibalizing sales from Intel’s more expensve processors and Microsoft had to severely discount Windows. Moore’s Law guaranteed that netbooks would become just as powerful as regular laptops within a couple of years.

            The iPad was a happy accident. It allowed Intel to choke sales of its Atom processor until it could figure out a way to reposition the part. Atom is now Intel’s small form factor, mobile part for mobile phones and tablets.

            As for iPads “outselling” laptops, hundreds of millions of laptops are sold every year. Rumors of its death are also greatly exagerated.

            It’s great that you can regurgitate the talking points of the tech media but I was actually having these debates when the actual events were ocurring in real-time. I predicted that netbooks would be killed off long before they were by Intel and Microsoft and it played out exactly as I stated.

          • benbajarin

            I’m all too familiar with this story. My firm was very close to this situation, as like you we predicted and told the story to the industry that Netbooks were not a sustainable form factor and eventually we saw that they would just simply turn into cheap thin and lights. Which we still think is happening but is yet to fully manifest.

            Keep in mind that Netbooks were an accident. Intel never intended this to happen and the Netbook category simply became damage control. Asus took their low end chip and created a small cheap PC and Intel never thought that would happen. So once it did they and MSFT had to adjust. But as history will show, both Intel and MSFT made specific decisions to cripple these devices and make sure the market saw them as differentiated from a real PC.

            There is a lot more to this story that I hope to be able to tell someday.

          • steve_wildstrom

            As Ben says, there’s a lot to this story. I don’t know all of it, but has the advantage of not being under any confidentiality agreements. Suffice it to say that between Intel and Microsoft, there were a lot of restrictions on what chips could be used with what versions of Windows and with what display sizes. Plus there was tremendous cost pressure on the whole netbook segment because it was a race to the bottom. No wonder the products were dogs.

            Intel’s Atom family was never intended for notebook form factors. Both Microsoft and even more so Intel bet heavily on what Intel called Mobile Internet Devices and Microsoft called Ultra-Mobile PCs (Project Origami) a tablet-ish mobile device that failed to get the form factor, the battery life, or the software right. Both Windows and Linux versions sank without a trace.

            Intel was left with Atom chips that were too big and power-hungry to put in phones and too lame for real PCs. Netbooks, at least temporarily, solved a problem for Intel once Asus put the Atom into a small clamshell form factor.

            Intel back then had a roadmap for Atom that carried it pretty much to where it is today, with radical shrinkage of the die size, dramatically lower power consumption, and much better multicore performance,

          • James King

            By the time netbooks started to be supplanted by tablets, there were pretty good ones with decent screens, keyboards and performance, particularly the ones with the NVIDIA discrete graphics. Performance-wise at least, netbooks had started to turn the corner.

            I was aware of Intel’s plans with Atom (not officially) but use of Atom for tablets and phones was years away at that time. Project Origami was another example of Microsoft’s ham-fisted efforts to put Windows on everything, regardless of how ill-suited. Once again, some OS innovation would have gone a long way.

          • Defendor

            Netbooks weren’t so much in a race to the bottom, they started out as the new bottom. They sucked pretty much right from the start, but they sold, because regular laptop prices at netbook introduction were so high, that netbooks were significantly more affordable.

            What killed netbooks wasn’t tablets, but affordable laptops. Once you could buy a decent laptop with a decent screen and non-cramped keyboard, why bother with the crappy netbook?

          • James King

            For all the crap netbooks take, the only reason you can find a decent computer in the sub-14″ range right now is because of netbooks. Right when the supply of netbooks started to dry up, I was looking for a small laptop with a screen size less than 14″ at a decent price. I found exactly ONE, a Samsung. Don’t get me wrong it’s an awesome machine, it has a 12″ matte screen and an i5 and I put a Samsung 840 Pro SSD in it. Needless to say, it is awesome. But it was literally the ONLY machine of its type at that time.

            I still have an ASUS Seashell series netbook with an AMD APU that runs acceptably well with an SSD and its well over a year old. People didn’t stop buying netbooks because they “sucked,” they stopped buying them because they literally stopped making them. Once tablets came out, NO ONE carried netbooks anymore. The tech media always claimed that it was a causal effect but it wasn’t. People were still buying netbooks like crazy until they literally couldn’t find them anymore.

            Even right now, the only really small computer I’ve found that is decently constructed and has pretty good performance for the price is the ASUS Vivobook X202e. It, for all intents and purposes, is a modern netbook. As I’ve stated before, “ultrabooks” are just netbooks with the economics more in line with Intel and Microsoft’s ideal. The X202e is a product that likely wouldn’t exist if netbooks had never been popular. I’ve always considered netbooks a distinct form-factor, pretty much a tablet with a keyboard that ran a more sophisticated OS. As someone who prefers laptops in the sub-12″ range, netbooks had a lot of potential. With the newer AMD APUs and discrete graphics from NVIDIA, their performance was definitely on the upswing. To me, it wasn’t about buying a cheap laptop because you could find any number of 14″ and 15″ monstrosities for a good price. What made netbooks great for many was not just their price but their size and dimensions. The industry is JUST NOW starting to provide acceptable replacements.

          • Defendor

            Sometimes you need to recognize when you are niche buyer and not a representative of the market. The netbook market always comprised a niche of tiny machine buyers, and a broader value buyer component.

            Netbooks for most of their successful life were MUCH cheaper than real laptops, and had screens around 8″-10″, which gave them essentially unusable keyboards for touch typing. Near the end they grew up to 12″ size and at the same time, real laptop price had fallen to the point that the value buyers gravitated back to laptops turning netbooks back into a niche market for small machine fans. At that point the netbook niche was pretty much unsustainable.

            For most of us, netbooks were always just cheap and crappy small laptops.

          • James King

            If by “niche” you mean the fastest growing and largest selling segment of the PC market until the Atom architecture was artificially crippled by Intel to prevent it from competing with its more expensive parts, you are absolutely correct.

            It wasn’t market dynamics that doomed netbooks but a concerted industry effort spearheaded by Intel and Microsoft. History has been rewritten to suit the victors.

          • Mad Eye

            ” Moore’s Law guaranteed that netbooks would become just as powerful as regular laptops within a couple of years.”

            Well, by the time netbooks caught up, it will still be behind a regular laptop because of Moore’s law. By the time it caught up the OS and software will become more power-consuming and graphics-rich.
            iPad is not outselling laptops at the moment, but if you look at the numbers, PC sales are declining for the last couple of years.

        • Mad Eye

          the ASUS Vivobook X202e is what people call a ‘ultrabook’ not a netbook. BTW Acer and Asus ceased netbook production this January(Google it), effectively killing the category.

    • Rich

      About Microsoft not learning the lesson they’ve paid for: I have my own explanation for that, but I’m interested in what your explanation is.

      • FalKirk

        Strategy tax. Microsoft doesn’t want to believe that touch and pixel specific input are inherently different because, if they are, then they have to compete with iOS and Android from ground zero. Instead, they want to leverage their desktop monopoly and the only way they see to do that is to claim that all devices – tablets, hybrids, notebooks and desktops – are PCs and Microsoft Windows 8 runs on them all.

        • Rich

          Microsoft is actually showing truth in advertising when they call everything Windows, since it’s based in 1990s technology and the name goes back even further. Probably everything will still be Windows in 2020 when they have no consumer business anymore.

          • FalKirk

            “Microsoft is actually showing truth in advertising when they call everything Windows…” – Rich

            Well, not really. Windows 8 is now actually three separate operating systems: Windows Phone 8, Windows RT and Windows 8.

          • Mad Eye

            But still Windows…. lol

    • JohnDoey

      Lucky for Microsoft, Apple is releasing iOS 7 Vista.

      Mac and Windows don’t compete much anymore. All Macs are $999-and-up, and Apple has over 90% of that market. Average Windows PC sells for $400 and competes with iPad today. So it is Windows 8.1 (subway signage) versus iOS 7 (bathroom signage) going forward. Whatever bad things you can say about Windows 8 also apply to iOS 7, so there is no superiority to Apple’s position anymore in the under-$900 PC market. Apple has also let a bunch of designers fart into a bottle and now is going to force it on users who don’t want it.

      • Rich

        Come on, JohnDoey. You say “Whatever bad things you can say about Windows 8 also apply to iOS 7.” Not true at all. The two OS’s are much too different – starting with Windows 8 trying to work for the desktop PC as well as touch, which iOS 7 doesn’t do – for your statement to be true. You say Apple “is going to force iOS 7 on users who don’t want it.” That’s absurd. You can’t force anything on customers, you can only win them. And anyone who says “Apple has also let a bunch of designers fart into a bottle” is being too childish to participate in an adult discussion.

        • TheEternalEmperor

          +1 The toughest talk come from those with the least experience in such matters.

      • Mad Eye

        Please don’t comment as you obviously don’t know what you are talking about.

  • Andit

    Something I don’t understand. You are using Mavericks, and you are using a new Macbook Air 2013, and you theorize that together they will have insane battery life. Its not clear what you are currently running Mavericks on and why you aren’t running it on your Macbook Air 2013?

    • benbajarin

      Ah, yes sorry I’ll update to clarify. I’m running it on a 13″ retina MacBook pro. Don’t have an exact double of that machine to test battery life on.

      • Nate

        Why don’t you partition it then? Or just back up and upgrade.

        I agree with Andit, once I saw you are just *speculating* that once you finally do install Mavericks on the MBA the battery life will increase I realized I was misled.

        • benbajarin

          I can but I’m still doing normal testing for my article on the 13″ Air. The battery life I pointed out I’m getting on the 13″ air is real world Lion results. So i’m getting amazing battery life and its not running Mavericks. My point, and theory, is that Mavericks will get even better battery life on the 13″ air then I’m getting now running Lion. So perhaps rather than 12-13 hours I can achieve now easily doing all day work on the 13″ Air, I can get 15 or perhaps even better.. That is my theory and I’ll wait until the final version is out and running on my 13″ Air to quantify my theory.

          • Scooteristi

            When testing battery life please note for us whether battery sucks like full brightness, WiFi, Bluetooth, etc are on and in use.

          • benbajarin

            Yes, I have done this and am including it in my article specifically on the 2013 MBA 13″ I am doing for Monday.

      • Trippie

        Also, I’m pretty sure your new 13″ Haswell MacBook Air is running Mountain Lion and not Lion. Apple usually requires the most recent OS update at time of release as the minimum OS for every new model. These new ones come pre-installed with 10.8.4 and can’t be downgraded as far as I know.

        • benbajarin

          Yes MT Lion your right. Total brain fart on my part.

      • hellome

        hey i too have the same mac book pro retina it just crashed (white screen of death :P thanks to windos 8) can i ask the service center to put the beta or i need to get os x mt and OS X Mavericks ?? I do have the developer account

        can i also update my mac book air 11″ its 2 years old will it support :)

  • TheEternalEmperor

    I have a PC and I use three monitors. For me, I prefer the start button and taskbar on one monitor, in my case, the center monitor. I have my IDE in the center, browser email on right and remaining stuff on the left.

    I don’t think I would like having menu bars and docs on all three.

    • benbajarin

      I have different workflows going on separate monitors, which is why the menu in particular appeals to me. It is annoying working on the monitor on my right and then having to go to the middle monitor for the menu.

      To each his own of course, its just how I prefer to be efficient.

      • TheEternalEmperor

        Absolutely. What I’ve found is that I want those extra top pixels on those outer monitors. Go figure! I’m still using 4×3 ratio 21″ monitors. I was getting them refurb.

        I’m actually debating moving to only two widescreen 24″ or 27″ jobs. The height of those are close enough my 4x3s that it would “feel” the same.

        • Scooteristi

          But, unlike Windows, in Mac OS X fullscreen mode the menus and docks auto hide until you actually need ‘em so they don’t waste pixels.

          • TheEternalEmperor

            You can auto that stuff in Windows.

  • Bill

    On multiple monitor support: is there any way to configure them separately? Could one, for example, have a menu bar but no dock on a second monitor? Or (further out there), have the dock on left or right side on one monitor, but at the bottom on another?

    I currently keep Mail and OmniFocus open all the time on my second monitor, tilted sideways in portrait mode. I don’t have room for the dock over there, but hate having to move the cursor all the way across to get to the menu (current workaround: MenuPop, which I use extensively on the second monitor). So I’d love to have the menu on the second monitor, but not the dock—though I might consider putting it at the bottom, as long as I could keep it on the right side on my primary monitor. Any way to do this in Mavericks?

  • Scooteristi

    Ben have you tested scrolling in Mavericks Safari in Facebook? Because Facebook is an utter pain to scroll in Mountain Lion Safari (work great in Snow Leopard or Firefox or Chrome).

    • benbajarin

      It is much better in this version, but oddly very different than many other sites because of all the code happening.

      • WishIknew

        Hi Ben, my biggest issue is GUI lag. Is mavericks snappier and more responsive? Snow leopard was so awesome when it came to this. (Mac pro 8-core mid2010)

  • Angus Dike

    I get slightly worried when I see an analyst get blown away and not state any negatives or even desires for more x, y or z.

    To be clear, there are people that I don’t mind a gushing commentary. That’s what they do, and they are entertaining. But when I want an analytical view, a critique, I come to the critics to give perspective. Anything too one sided is incomplete.

    More file management? Less file management? Better gestures? Smarter I/O? Did you not want AI or something? A mood area on the desktop?

    • benbajarin

      Two points. First, I’m testing a developer preview so I’d rather not critique any things not addressed until we see the final version when things could be added. I can address a wish list at that time.

      Second, I see quite a lot of amazing technology in the labs of major hardware companies. There are of course many things I want but I’m realistic in my desires as to when certain technology is possible. We have presentations we give at a high level to execs on what we think the world of technology will look like in 2018. We have a pretty sound vision but also realize it will take time to get there.

    • JohnDoey

      Mavericks is a better Mountain Lion. What is there to be disappointed by? They fixed about 100 major things that were universally seen as flaws. For example, multiple display full-screen apps. The complaining will come over the next year and hopefully be answered in OS X 11.0. On a yearly release schedule, all you want to see is consistent evolution.

    • Guest

      Angus Dike

      Okay, here’s a more analytical view:

      The tabbed Finder is a godsend for file management. Going back to the non-tabbed Finder in ML is actually painful.

      Tags are very good, but they’re limited by the fact that tagged groups can currently only be accessed from the Finder’s sidebar. If you could drag tagged groups into the Dock and access them like pinned folders, oh man…

      SMBX is still a broken sack of failure.

      The UI seems to be faster and more responsive. Also, I believe Apple finally enabled OpenCL support for the Intel HD 4000. They also allocate more RAM to it.

      The Dock is now frosted when it’s position at the left or right side of the screen. I am fine with this. I am not fine with the new vertical drop shadow.

      There are probably more changes but I haven’t really noticed them.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1131685622 Peter Buckton

    Spiral development, is comparable to Intel’s Tick/Tock.
    Done right, over time it can absolutely crush any competition.

  • neutrino23

    More than any recent OS X release I’m really looking forward to Mavericks.

  • Mark Garnett

    Apple TV outputs HDMI, my Dell monitors can run off HDMI (indeed that’s how I run 2 screens from my ThinkPad without a dock). So I am interested how responsive Airplay output is as. Monitor screen for work, not just as a keynotes presentation display (or whatever). I use them both in portrate mode (to maximise the amount if code I can see/read, by the way), does OSXM support that? Could it support TWO Air displays and a normal one (3 in total)?

    • benbajarin

      You have hit on something of interest to me at a technical level. There are conditions into which AirPlay is responsive and times when it is not due to network congestion. You are correct that showing a presentation is fine but when you use it as a second monitor there is some delay. Given this is the dev preview I’ll wait to further test this delay is it may get more optimized.

      However, I do not believe WiFi is the best solution for this. I’ve been tracking whats happening in the 60 ghz front for a while and I think the time is near for Apple to start supporting 60ghz which will deliver a true wireless HDMI solution. Demo’s I’ve seen are significant with near zero latency in high intense graphical games for example.

      I’ll check on portrait mode also but if the monitor supports it I believe any output will as well, meaning AirPlay.

    • CorradoCoppola

      I’m also interested in using an Apple TV as a display (main). I would like to place my MacBook somewhere (closed) and use bluetooth keyboard and mouse. I fear that any delay in the movement of the cursor could become very annoying.
      Does anyone have answers?

      • benbajarin

        Yes. From my tests there is still lag. This has everything to do with the state of wifi and the need for better frequency. Wifi that can use 60gig spectrum may help.

        This use case is more about screen sharing for collaboration more than anything else in its current form.

        • CorradoCoppola

          Thanks!!!!
          In my opinion the problem is using wi-fi on both. Maybe using gigabit net on Apple TV and wi-fi on Mac should be better.

  • JohnDoey

    OS X Mavericks looks great. Me and everyone I know are excited to get it on day one.

    Now all I want is iOS Mavericks — a new iOS that improves and evolves iOS 6 in the same way that OS X is evolving. Because me and everyone I know are mortified by iOS 7 and are not going to use it.

    • SuperMatt

      Why are you mortified by iOS 7? You didn’t create it. You don’t have to use it. What’s so mortifying about that? By the way, in my opinion, you and everybody you know don’t have very good taste. iOS 7 is great.

      • Dark Templar

        So, SuperMatt, if I do not have your tastes, I have bad taste ?

    • TheEternalEmperor

      Great! I think it looks good and everyone I know is excited. Don’t upgrade, move to Android and have a good life.
      Your reaction is EXACTLY the reaction people had when OS X was first released. Looks like people like you came around.

  • Peter

    I don’t think the engineers at Apple are any smarter than those elsewhere. The big difference is that the PC manufacturers are starved for profits (assembling PCs is a barely profitable business at the best of times), because of the combined Microsoft and Intel ‘taxes’. The net result is that no money is available for any real research and proper development, and that manufacturers are constantly trying to cut corners with component quality. Also, the core strengths of companies like Dell (in its heyday) is not technology, but logistics and on-demand manufacturing.

    Apple on the other hand (and thanks to the Apple ‘tax’) is profitable and is simply out-innovating the sclerotic PC industry. It is clear to me that the must have feature for 2013 is going to be MacBookAir battery life. Unfortunately for the PC guys, this is quite hard to replicate if you are on a small development budget, cannot use all the needed high quality components (too expensive) and have no control over the software side (Microsoft big-footprint software is not that energy friendly).

    • Rich

      Okay I propose a different approach for a PC manufacturer who is starting up their business. They decide they’re going for the upper end of the market. Then they could sell at a higher price point and they would have money for research and development and quality components. On the energy side, Intel has developed energy saving processors so they could use those.

      They won’t follow that track if they decide to be like Dell and not put the emphasis on technology but something else instead, but that’s a choice they make. I think most manufacturers choose not to go for the high end of the market because they say there are many more customers for midrange products (which is true).

      • Nevermark

        Companies like Dell and Sony have often put out PCs and laptops that aim for the high end of the market. But they are still design constrained vs. Apple by not being able to to control both hardware and OS software. It is a rare innovation that does not require changes in both to succeed well, even if at first glance it seems to be a pure hardware or software improvement.

        Only if Microsoft and a single particular hardware manufacturer partnered up for the long term could they match Apple’s design advantage. But Microsoft is not interested in doing that for many reasons (it would change their business model completely, alienate the majority of customers who preferred other hardware partners, hand over enormous market power to their new partner, etc.)

        So for the foreseeable future, only Apple will be able to design hardware and OS software advances in sync.

        • Bob

          >Only if Microsoft and a single particular hardware manufacturer partnered up for the long term could they match Apple’s design advantage.

          You could say that they are doing this is a sense with MS’s recent acquisition of Nokia. Have you seen the new Nokia tablet running 8.1? Looks kinda nice.

  • unixandthings

    > In fact, the last few years it seems I have
    > had the same feeling with each and every release.

    I hated automatic file saving and no Save As… in 10.7.

    • Mad Eye

      You can turn it off in preferences you know.

    • Jay Emm

      YESSSSSSS!!!!!!!!! My biggest gripe and a LOUSY “feature”.

  • albertkinng

    Why I have this intense feeling that Mac OS X will be a standalone OS PC/Mac Compatible as Windows in a near future?

  • WishIKnew

    Does anyone know if mavericks will run faster than mountain lion did on my Mac Pro mid 2010 8-core? I’m not really interested in battery life. Thx.

  • Davey

    I used to hate Apple with a passion, but year after year they’ve chipped away those feelings. I’m literally stunned at OSX Mavericks. Using Windows 7 to post this I feel, well, left in the dust now. Wow.. Windows is so re-digested and un-thought out, an OS with no innovation that’s just ugly to look at and unfriendly to use anymore. Credit where credits due – good job apple, good job.

  • Jay Emm

    I don’t care WHAT awesome, usable, new neat-o features are available. Just please PLEASE PLEASE give us the option to 86 “Versions” and “Auto Save”. A lousy ‘feature’ which is nothing more than a massive speed bump in your work flow.

  • Kc

    What’re you people TALKING ABOUT??!?!?!?! Mavericks is AWFUL!!!

    • Molly

      Yes, a lot of “droid” talk on here, when the point is to provide an opinion on Os-X-Mavericks. It does suck. Dreadfully slow and awkward. Apple was supposed to be about being user friendly. Not supposed to be a geek to use it properly. Someone bragged about being an Apple user for 15 years, and how that entitles them to an informed opinion. Well, I feel cheated because I have been a Apple user for just as long and I now have a Mac Book Pro that is essentially a paperweight, since I downloaded Mavericks onto it. I went back to my old iMac to get e-mails in the short term. What a lot of nonsense about touch screen capabilities, Microsoft hardware/software.

  • Kc

    Can no longer swipe to go back and forth through the web browsers (any of them). The maps app is lame because you can’t zoom in without moving your mouse TO the zoom button on the lower right-hand side. Why not be like everyone else and make this easier by setting zoom to the scroller? Anyways, the scroller itself is less responsive. And seriously? Can’t swipe to go back and forth through the web anymore? That’s bogus.

  • Leafy Putney

    It’s rubbish. I have tried installing this twice now on my (very new) 27″ iMac. It kills almost everything that works. I mean, every time you open Mail you get ‘upgrading’ and have to hit ‘continue? And it keeps telling me that my old email address is linked to my Apple ID, when I changed it three months ago. Weirdly, it works fine on my MacBook Pro. Reverting now to 10.8 on the iMac for the second time. I’ll wait for an update. No wonder it’s free of charge – Apple should pay US for this! They released it too soon to ‘compete’ with the crappy Windoze 8, it’s not finished and not ready. What a hassle, this has cost me a lot of hours.

    • steve_wildstrom

      You seem top have come to rather sweeping conclusions about the OS itself based on one upgrade that didn’t go smoothly, even though you concede that another upgrade went fine.

      Upgrades go wrong for a large number of idiosyncratic reasons. Absent evidence of widespread problems, which have not been reported, it’s a bit extreme to declare it “rubbish” and “released too soon” on the basis of one anecdote.

  • k9gardner

    I generally like and agree with the Mac-think. But I have to chuckle that the reason I found your article was because I did a search on my badly-phrased “scrolling through window lists much slower on Mavericks,” to find your article extolling the virtues of Mavericks’ scrolling. I’m talking about Finder’s column view, where I am trying to scroll through various nested folders and it sometimes hesitates and pauses as I try to go to the next nested level, something which in the past was (i.e. last week) was not happening. In fact I seem to see some hesitations as I launch programs; things are a little odd.

    We’ll work with it, and see what happens!

  • OptionalLemon

    This article is contradicting each and every of my Maverickjs experiences. Ben Bajarin was either paid off to say these things or very very drunk.