I’ve been an Apple guy for a long time. For better and worse, I’ve hung with the company even when it put me through a three-hour customer service nightmare with my one dysfunctional iPhone. (I’ve been on the phone since the second generation release.) Eventually, the clean, crisp design and common sense functionality led me to purchase a MacBook Pro and ditch my PC forever.
Of all the Apple products I’ve owned, the MacBook Pro is the best. The only reason I’m now on my second one is because I spilled coffee all over the first one, and that was just when I was getting used to OS X Mavericks.
Mavericks was a great release, bringing extended desktop and AirPlay to older models of computer. However, it wasn’t all that different design-wise from what had come before. Therefore, I didn’t know what to expect when the company finally rolled out OS X Yosemite yesterday. I’d read a few previews, but that’s a poor substitute for an actual test drive.
Finally, I got that opportunity yesterday, and I’ve got to say, Wow.
Apple has removed the drop shadows of previous designs for a clean, flat look that integrates perfectly with iOS 8 on an iPhone and iPad Air. But looks aren’t all this hottie has going for it. In fact, they’re barely even a factor compared to the functionality.
Essentially, Yosemite turns your iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Pro or iMac into the same computer spread across three devices. It does this by making liberal use of its iCloud Drive feature that gives you instant access to all your docs wherever you are and whatever device you’re using.
Still, that’s nothing new. Cloud-based services have been around for a while and Amazon has made more of an impact in that area than iCloud so far. Well, that’s about to change because Yosemite makes sure that it doesn’t just stop with docs and spreadsheets. Boasting a “Handoff” feature and opening up the API to third-party developers, Apple has made it possible to stop what you’re doing on one device and instantly pick it up on the next.
So far, the Handoff feature works on Pages, Numbers, and a variety of other in-house apps, but that’s changing quickly as third-party apps from the Mac App Store will enable your desktop/laptop to bring the same seamless integration over from your favorite iOS apps.
Yosemite also lets you utilize your iOS device as a mobile hotspot provided you have a data plan tied to the device. This means you no longer have to park out at a coffee shop all day to do your work. You could just as easily camp out at a Taco Bell, McDonalds, or hospital waiting room (which is where you’ll soon be headed if you have too much of the first two).
It’s safe to say that if Apple can’t win you over with Yosemite, they never will. While I have kicked around the idea of grabbing a Samsung tablet or phone at some point, that’s pretty much off the table now. Apple may not play nice with other platforms, but it treats us “institutionalized customers” quite well.