Apple officially renames Mac OS X to OS X, drops the 'Mac'

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Apple's making a big deal out of Mountain Lion today, but there's an equally big change quietly afoot: the "Mac" in "Mac OS X" is no more. Instead, Apple's desktop operating system is now simply called OS X. We confirmed the official name change with Apple, who told us that the preferred full name is "OS X Mountain Lion," and a quick look around the company's new Mountain Lion pages reveals that the tweak is already well in effect. That's not to say the "Mac" brand has been demoted, as it's still used throughout Apple's site — it appears that Mac is being used to identify hardware products, while OS X refers to the software. As with everything else about Mountain Lion, that matches the iOS naming scheme of calling the iPhone and iPad by separate names than the OS, but we'll see exactly how Apple plans to manage all this branding in the future.

Oh, and Apple conspiracy theorists might draw a line from today's change to 2007's decision to officially rename the company "Apple, Inc." from "Apple Computer." Does it all mean something? Only Apple knows for sure.

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