30 thoughts on “The slow rise of the SoMoClo OS”

  1. I find it amazing that Google can espouse this very philosophy via Chrome OS and get nothing but odd looks. Apple integrates a few cloud features and suddenly the “Cloud OS” future is upon us. To me Apple is playing catch up in this arena. Google has been evangelizing this approach for years. Heck, even Microsoft is further ahead than Apple here…but both were largely ignored or scoffed at.

    1. Chrome OS is about point click, discrete events with files moved onto the Web. Desktop with a web backend. Apple is working on conversational dialog which requires context.

      1. Well said Ron. OSXs software suite is geared toward expression and touch is so close to an articulated language. Chrome books are also incredibly limited. An iPad is a more capable software environment. Om is always the most clear with his trend line. I don’t expect any different from his vision on Mtn Lions place because lion was baby steps interface wise.

    2. Chrome OS is everything in a browser. It’s a window into the Internet. Apple’s OS is app based. Taps letting bits of internet into your machine. You espouse the advantages of local code for speed and elegance and have hooks into the internet for the information. Google knows Apple was on the right track when Android was successful and Chrome is not.

    3. Nearly everything Apple does expands and improves on something that already exists. Nomad MP3 Player -> iPod, Blackberry -> iPhone, Windows Tablet -> iPad. This cloud/OS integration is the same thing. Google (actually Sun/Oracle) may have come up with a thin client solution, but Google’s implementation hasn’t been seen as very useful by the majority of users. What Apple has done is taken the best of both worlds, desktop applications and cloud based integration and combined them in such a way that users will probably find more comfortable to use and thus find value in it. Obviously it remains to be seen how users will respond, but because of the relatively seamless integration, I think it will be a hit.

  2. I agree with Eric’s comment, Google started this with Chrome OS, though somehow the Apple Marketing dogs bark louder. Anyhow, in the geography where I am situated, 256 KBps is the Govt. mandated broadband speed, so not sure if I should be happy or sad about these developments.

    1. “Google started this with Chrome OS”

      Right. It was really Google that brought the Personal Computer to the world, and Google that brought the graphical user interface to the world. And Desktop Publishing, with the LaserWriter. And Ouicktime. And then the iMac brought the world online. Then the Digital Hub and iTunes. The iPod. Then a way to make it all mobile with the iPhone. Then the iPad so that even your grandmother and your 2 year old could communicate with each other. Actually Apple did it all, and Microsoft, then Google, copied it all.

  3. This is definitely the consumer aspect of SoMoClo, but what happens with the enterprise aspect of SoMoClo where services and information are more highly regulated? And how do social, mobile, and cloud play off of each other? Here’s one perspective: http://www.somoclo.com

  4. I find it odd that all of the “revolutionary” work that got unveiled in Mountain Lion and more was unveiled in Windows 8 at Build last September. I don’t recall seeing any of the same breathless adulation like “the first true internet OS” and the like…

  5. While conceptually interesting, Apple has failed to make even Lion work reasonably well without some real bugs that truly piss users off. (If wonder if I’m joking take a look at the Apple community section of Lion.) As a happy Snow Leopard user, I’m really glad I didn’t switch. Now with the code barely stable in Lion, presto Apple comes up with Mountain Lion? No thank you, Apple. I actually depend on the Mac to do real work.

    Re Safari, it’s an absolute slow snail of a browser compared with Chrome.

    With these poor desktop software, Apple seems totally focused on iOS, i.e. the iPhone and iPad to the detriment and sacrifice of the Mac.

    Apple seems to be devoting all its resources to

    1. “Re Safari, it’s an absolute slow snail of a browser compared with Chrome.”
      I’m also in Snow Leopard, and I notice very little speed difference between the two. What I do see, is regular crashes in Chrome, and none in Safari. At least 2 or 3 a day.

      1. ‘At least 2 or 3 (crashes) a day’..in Chrome? I’d say there’s something wrong with your install, your Mac…or you. 🙂

        I’ve been using Chrome on my aging iMac since 2010. Although the machine’s fan occasionally moans under the heavy load of several dozen tabs plus multiple instances of Flash, I’ve seen only a handful of crashes, per year. And Google iterates like mad; noteworthy glitches tend to disappear quickly and without fuss.

        Safari — well, that’s another matter, entirely. Every time I try it, I can’t believe how slow it boots, even with no legacy tabs. On my iMac, performance is clearly sub-par — even compared to IE (!) — and patches tend to be even slower in coming. Utility is further compromised by the relative dearth of extensions vs Chrome and Fireox.

    2. >Re Safari, it’s an absolute slow snail of a browser compared with Chrome.

      I’ve got lots of Macs in my home, but only two have Intel processors. Oops, Chrome doesn’t support PPC.

      On the two that do have Intel processors, I’ve done my own, informal speed tests. Chrome is WAY slower than Safari.

      Add to that the fact that Chrome doesn’t even support RSS folders (and typing in the direct URL to an individual RSS feed does a Google search), and it’s obvious who’s got the better browser.

      Sorry, tortoro. If you like Chrome, more power to you, but I keep coming back to Safari.

  6. It’s interesting to note that Cook doesn’t think that tablets are going to lead to the demise of the PC. I think quite the contrary, except maybe in a work setting, but that is also changing a lot with the cloud explosion.

  7. gah, I wish they would fix the useability of the OS before adding in these teeny bopper features. I’d love it if they copied aero snap, they need to fix their DPI, or rather the lack of changing DPI on their high resolution displays, especially if we are getting retina laptop displays. Their taskbar is horrid, I have no idea how people accept this, file management is unintuitive at best, the list can go on and on. OSx really really needs a UI overhaul. Lion was a complete waste of money and it looks like they are continuing in this direction.

  8. @Safari lovers, if it works for you, more power to you. For me latest SL, 2.4 Ghz, Intel Core 2 Duo, 4 GB ram, Chrome is much, much faster.

    But Chrome v Safari wasn’t my primary point. My primary point is that Apple’s latest Mac OS, i.e. Lion is a piece of junk. Mountain Lion appears to be headed in the same direction, i.e. lots of cute bells and whistles but very little added benefit — and probably given Lion’s problems, built in the same crappy way. This reminds me of a lot of Windows bad releases.

  9. All of you deep-thinkers and trend-makers who live in densely populated areas and have enough disposable income to afford always-on unlimited-data plans for multiple devices are amusing sometimes. SoMoClo stands for Social+Mobile+Cloud but out in the sticks (the vast area of the US), that becomes SloMoClo — for Slow+Motion+Cloud. Also: be prepared to be laughed at in German-speaking areas. “Clo” is short for “Closett” meaning toilet (translated from the British ‘water closet’).

  10. Om, great post. But I have a simple question – how ready is the “cloud” (for example Apple’s Documents in the Cloud) when it comes to security and privacy i.e. HIPAA? Are you really prepared to save your medical records to iCloud? DropBox? Google Docs? If so, then you’re putting a lot of care and trust into these guys. After the Path “scandal” where its been revealed that the Apple Developer APIs did not think through the importance Address Book data (and hence did not preempt the Paths of the world by requiring them to force a window on the iOS device asking for explicit permission to access the Address Book’s contents), what types of things has Apple (which usually doesn’t have imagination deficit problems) not yet preemptively thought through such as with respect to iCloud’s Documents in the Cloud? Do you use iCloud to store your Calendar and Address Book data now? Medical and financial records tomorrow? Food for thought …

  11. Om, thank you for bringing attention to the hot topic of SoMoClo. It’s both a meme and a converged IT construct that Aberdeen Group has been speaking, researching, and writing about for over 6 months. To access Aberdeen’s latest research on SoMoClo business value and best practices, please visit http://www.somoclo.com .

  12. SoMoClo is not just a problem for the Enterprise, but also for the creative types of the world. While Apple is expected to keep around powerful enough hardware for creatives (high-end iMacs and Mac Book Pro), what has me worried is the OS. The more it becomes “locked down” and focused on SoMoClo, the less usable it becomes. Let’s face it, the App Store does not cut it for creatives – we rely on third party software and control, such as being able to go back to a previous version, if the current version is buggy…

  13. I still feel really uncomfortable with apps.I rather a browser.That’s why I don’t understand this tablet-mania some people has.And 3G and 4G connections suck,so I think desktop PC will still be the best option for a while.

  14. Om,
    I can’t really agree with the social part here. What part of the operating system has to be social?
    Mobile – sure – there’s battery life, location, context, inputs and other aspects to deal with.
    Cloud – definitely – there are a lot of low level cloud services that make the OS better – push notifications, software upgrades, app store and a few others.
    But social?

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