It is all just guesses and speculation at this point, but if Peter Misek from Jefferies & Co is correct, Apple may be considering a merge of their Mac OS and iOS operating systems into one consolidated platform. This may sound like crazy talk, but he is predicting that this may happen as early as 2012 and begin with the MacBook Air, though he does suggest that a full conversion involving the more powerful Apple machines like the MacBook Pro may continue until as late as 2016.
A move like this would be made possible by the upcoming A6 quad-core app processor which Apple has recently started testing.
Migration of all Apple machines and devices to ARM processors, away from the more traditional x86 option that most currently use, will take time and testing but it seems very possible with the 64-bit versions coming soon. I am sure that this kind of alignment would appear logical to Apple, a company well known for streamlining their hardware offerings –something often criticized even though it seemingly increases stability.
I really believe that smartphones and tablets are increasing our expectations. With so many options for accessing our data and using our applications, we want our user experience to translate across all of our devices seamlessly and easily. We’ve had our appetites whet with promises of the iCloud, but we’re going to need more. One look at the recent release of Mac OS X Lion should tell you that Apple feels the same way.
Add to this the well documented tendency for users to become brand loyal once they adopt an Apple product, and the stage is set for a single, unified operating system to slide into place. Apple shouldn’t be too arrogant though, with the announcement last May that Google’s Desktop Android is being developed, it is clear this vision is shared and there may be competition.