Parallels launches a new beta of Desktop for Mac OS and discloses next features

After the yesterday announcement of VMware, reading a virtualization product for Intel based Mac OS desktops, and Microsoft, dismissing Virtual PC for Mac development, and without native virtualization announced for Leopard, Parallels doesn’t intend to loose Mac users loyalty and the new opportunity, and immediately announces a new beta cycle for its acclaimed Desktop.

The updated aims to fill some functionality holes which VMware will use to gain market share. Apart bug fixes it will includes among others:

  • USB improvement, including USB support for Windows Mobile 5, web cameras, and a much broader list of supported devices.
  • The Mac hard disk cache can be now switched off for a virtual machine, which can substantially improve OS X performance while using Parallels Desktop.
  • Improved graphic performance
  • Complete keyboard support, including the “eject CD” button and right & left shift mapping for non-English layouts
  • Unicode path support lets users name files and paths in any language
  • Improved shared folders performance

Enroll the beta program here.

If this is not enough Parallels revealed upcoming features planned for the near future:

  • A groundbreaking new user interface that will make running Windows on a Mac easier and more productive than ever before
  • Never before seen security and management tools
  • Capability to burn CDs and DVDs inside virtual machines
  • Fast 3D graphics support
  • The ability to run Microsoft Windows Vista

and most of all:

  • Paralles Server for Mac OS X