OS X 10.9, the next major iteration of Apple's operating system, will apparently include Siri, the "intelligent assistant" that first appeared on the iPhone 4S in late 2011. In addition, Apple's new mapping back-end will replace Google data for Core Location APIs, according to sources speaking to 9to5Mac.
Anticipated to arrive sometime in 2013, references to OS X 10.9 have been popping up in server logs for several Apple-related websites recently. 9to5Mac's sources explain that the development of OS X 10.9 began at the same time as OS X 10.8, with various new features assigned to each release. Such a strategy makes it possible for Apple to move to a yearly update cycle for its desktop OS.
Siri did not ship with Mountain Lion (10.8), but its underlying speech-to-text technology was included as a new Dictation feature. OS X 10.9 is expected to expand that feature to include Siri's ability to sort out answers to questions, set appointments and reminders, and launch applications.
The new data back-end for iOS 6's Maps will also reportedly move to the desktop next year. Hopefully, though, Apple will have sorted out the problems with Maps's erratic search results, missing points of interest, and embarrassingly inaccurate 3D data. Fortunately, no one will likely be using a Mac for turn-by-turn directions.
One thing seems certain, if 9to5Mac's sources are accurate—we can guess at upcoming features for iOS and OS X by looking at what new features are included in one but not the other.
OS X Mountain Lion (10.8) was released in late July this year. If Apple keeps its word about yearly OS X updates, we should expect OS X 10.9 sometime next summer. The only burning question is what Apple will call it. Ocelot? Wildcat? Lynx? Space Lion?