Weekly Wrap: Lion, Lion, some other stuff, and Lion

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There’s never a good time to take a break from reading Macworld.com for a week, of course. But this past week was perhaps the worst week to avoid the site in recent memory, as Apple let a rather enormous cat out of the bag. Join us as we run down the biggest stories from the week gone by.

The Mane Event

Apple released Lion. More than one million people downloaded it, perhaps inspired by Jason Snell’s epic review, or perhaps because they were desperate to try out the tips presented in Dan Frakes’s even more epic six-part series on installing Lion.

But we weren’t sure those combined 74,000 pages of Lion content were enough, so we also dived into some deeper analysis of what’s new in QuickTime and Preview, Mail, Safari, Address Book, the Finder, the user interface, Versions, Auto Save, and Resume, AirDrop and screen sharing, Mission Control and Laucnhpad, iCal, fonts and text, FileValut 2, iChat, and probably a few other features that I’ve missed—but I’m guessing you never even finished reading this sentence, so enraptured by our wealth of Lion coverage did you become.

Our Lion lovefest continued as we bade farewell to Front Row, configured Lion in five minutes, podcasted about the OS, and even sent Glenn Fleishman out in public (against our better judgment) so that he could try downloading Lion while at an Apple Store.

But even though we churned out dozens of articles and many thousands of words about Lion, we couldn’t devote all our time and attention to the big cat, since there were major…

Apple Hardware Announcements

… to drool over. Sure, there was Apple’s brutal murder of the $999 MacBook, but it was hard to shed tears for our fallen comrade since the new sexy heroine showed up right away to take its place: the new MacBook Air line, with its Thunderbolt port and Intel Core i5 processors and whatnot. And if you’re like the rest of the Thunderbolt-ready Mac-owning crowd—namely, wondering just what the heck you’re supposed to do with that Thunderbolt port, Apple’s come up with at least one answer: Plug in the new 27-inch Apple Thunderbolt Display. Just try not think about the fact that the Thunderbolt logo is a, you know, lightning bolt.

Instead, think about Apple’s new Mac minis. They too support Thunderbolt, but their DVD drive has gone the way of the SCSI port. If you think Apple's ditching DVD drives fast, our lab tests show that the new minis themselves are even faster.

iOS News

The week went notably better for iOS than for Android. An ITC ruling threatens Android’s future; Android is losing developers to iOS; and iOS is still in demand, despite the lack of a new iPhone.

There is some good news for Google, though. Its just-launched Google+ app for iPhone is one of the most popular free apps in the App Store at this writing—even ranking ahead of the Facebook app. “Stick that in your pipe and poke it, Zuckerberg,” Google CEO Larry Page wasn’t quoted as saying.

Other apps we reported on include:

Coverjam Pro and SoundHound, which help even non-hippies see their music;
Fanhattan, which helps ensure you never cross your video streams;
Julius Styles, a game from Wesley Snipes that you might find taxing;
Sid Meier’s Pirates, which is rated Aaaarrrrrr!; and
Foosball HD, a game to help you get your kicks.

We also showed you how to set iPhone alarms silently, and warned you that some Birds you know well may soon move from Angry to Absolutely Livid, since Lodsys is now suing their developer.

Other Stuff

Our experts debated whether you should get an Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 subscription or go the ownership route instead.

Jason Snell wrote a love letter to the space shuttle, which was approximately as Apple-related as any recent news story about Steve Wozniak, but space exploration is awesome, and the article thus worth reading.

Speaking of space exploration, “Captain” Kirk McElhearn wrote up a pair of useful tutorials this past week: How to archive your tweets and Ten Safari shortcuts you should know.

Apple’s Third Quarter Earnings

During its third quarter earnings call, Apple reported record sales and profits—including net profit of $7.31 billion. We also posted a transcript of Tim Cook’s statements from the earnings call. Here’s the CliffsNotes version: “We’re rich! We’re really stinking rich!”

Be cool

Finally, you’re caught up on what was unquestionably a busy and exciting week for Apple. We’d suggest you go outside and get some fresh air, but with much of the country under heat warnings instead, maybe you should just stay right where you are, go back to the top, and read this Weekly Wrap all over again.

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