Apple releases OS X Mavericks for free

Apple is giving away its latest operating system for Macs, a first for the OS.

Donna Tam Staff Writer / News
Donna Tam covers Amazon and other fun stuff for CNET News. She is a San Francisco native who enjoys feasting, merrymaking, checking her Gmail and reading her Kindle.
Donna Tam
Watch this: Apple releases free OS X Mavericks

Mac users can have Apple's latest Mac operating system, OS X Mavericks, for free, the company announced Tuesday at an event in San Francisco.

"Today we're going to revolutionize pricing," Craig Federighi, Apple's chief of iOS and OS X, said. The software is available today.

Apple introduced the system in June at its developers' conference. The company touted its extended battery life, tabs, and tags, while demonstrating new features in Safari, Maps, and iBooks.

Federighi reiterated the new features at Tuesday's event. A 13-inch MacBook Air with Mavericks gets up to an hour more of Web browsing and up to 1.5 hours more iTunes movie playback, he said.

He also explained how the system adjusts its memory based on the task. This allows for optimal quality when you're running a graphics-heavy program -- and speed when you're not. He also highlighted the iBook app, in which photos and videos can pop out of a textbook, and an iCloud keychain, which syncs payment information for online purchases.

CNET's Jason Parker said in June that the OS is faster and easier to use, and apps have a cleaner look. See his First Take here.

This is a developing story. Follow our CNET live blog and read all of today's Apple news.

Apple unveils new iPads, MacBooks, and releases Mavericks (pictures)

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Updated, 10:37 am PT: Added more details from the event.