As reported by Macworld last week, Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, Apple's next operating system, will ship earlier than expected on Friday 28 August 2009.

The Apple Store was down late this morning, when it reopened for business Snow Leopard took centre stage.

Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard costs £25.00, while the Family Pack costs £39.00. On the Apple US Store Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard costs $29.00, the Family Pack $49.00.

A new Mac Box Set - featuring Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, iLife ’09, featuring iPhoto ’09, iMovie ’09, GarageBand ’09, iWeb ’09, and iDVD and iWork ’09, Apple’s productivity suite for home and office including Pages ’09, Numbers ’09, and Keynote ’09, costs £129.00 and £179.00 for the Family Pack.

Those running Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger will need to upgrade by purchasing the Mac Box Set.

The Mac Box Set in the US meanwhile is $169.00 and $229.00 for the Family Pack.

Mac OS X Server 10.6 Snow Leopard - Unlimited Client License costs £399.00, or $499.00 in the US.

The Mac OS X Snow Leopard Up-to-Date Programme scheme, which started on 8 June 2009 runs until 26 December 2009 and offers customers the option to upgrade to Snow Leopard at a discounted price costs £7.95, $9.95 in the US, for Snow Leopard.

Users must request their Up-to-Date upgrade within 90 days of purchase or by December 26, 2009, whichever comes first. For more information please visit www.apple.com/uk/macosx/uptodate.

Snow Leopard will be available from Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorised Resellers on Friday, while Apple's online store is now accepting pre-orders.

Snow Leopard promises to refine, further simplify and speed up the Mac OS X experience.

Snow Leopard requires a Mac computer with an Intel processor. Full system requirements can be found on the Apple Web site at www.apple.com/uk/macosx/specs.html.

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