July 24, 2012 at 5:02 PM ET
Updated at 8:51 a.m. on July 25, 2012 to reflect that OS X 10.8 is now available
During its third quarter earnings call, Apple reported solid sales of iPhones and iPads, and announced it would release OS X 10.8 (also known as Mountain Lion) on Wednesday. The update brings Facebook integration and several iOS features to the Mac, and will cost $19.99.
The release date was previously only known to be sometime in July. iOS is still coming out "this Fall," according to CEO Tim Cook, who also said Apple has some new products "in the pipeline."
Mountain Lion includes iMessage and a Notification Center, two popular iOS features, and a new ubiquitous share button is coming to many applications. New dictation and iCloud features have been added, along with a mode called PowerNap, which allows newer Macs to receive updates and messages while asleep.
Apple sold 26 million iPhones and 17 million iPads this quarter, up significantly from the same time last year. Some analysts were concerned that rumors of the next-generation iPhone model would dampen demand for the current device, and others suggested that the most recent revision of the iPad was underwhelming and would not see a major increase in sales. Although Apple did sell more devices than in the same period last year, the numbers were still below analysts' expectations.
Eligible Macs (2GB of RAM, 8GB of hard drive space, and OS X 10.6.8 or newer) are able to download the OS X Mountain Lion update from the Mac App Store now. As with the Lion release, there won't be a DVD version of the operating system for sale.
Devin Coldewey is acontributing writer for NBC News. His personal website iscoldewey.cc.