OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard for Mac and iPhone?

Last year Apple infamously delayed the release of their long anticipated OS X 10.5 Leopard in order to devote more resources to their soon-to-launch iPhone. When Leopard finally roared, it brought with it a host of new features, including CoreAnimation, Time Machine, Coverflow and Quicklook, and some 296 more according to Apple.

So would the next OS X release be similarly feature-packed... and delayed?

Turns out maybe just the opposite. Rumor is Apple may release OS X 10.6, claimed to be code-named "Snow Leopard" as early as Macworld in January 2008, and maybe even debut a beta this WWDC (?!).

Sounds crazy? Here's what's crazier: just as "Snow Leopard" comes off as a minor addition to "Leopard", so too is OS X 10.6 supposedly a functionally similar product to 10.5! Focus this time may just be on stability, making what's good better, and increasing the unification between the various "flavors" of the OS Apple now deploys across the Mac, iPhone, and Apple TV platforms.

Personally, this sounds great to me. OS X is mature enough at this point that more eye-candy or changes for changes sake can easily take a back seat for the final polish analogous to the 10.1 release of the early days. Nailing down the platform will let Apple take both the Mac and their mobile initiatives, headlined by the iPhone, fully and functionally into the future.