Preparing for a week using nothing but Apple technology didn’t take long.
On paper, the biggest challenge was switching to the iPhone 5S. I’ve used iPhones in the past, just not in the last two years and not with iOS 7.
Apple’s iPhone 5S is much smaller and lighter than my current smartphone. I worried this could mean difficulties reading the screen.
The Retina display and the iOS 7 styling meant there are no reading problems. In fact, there are more positives than negatives.
Apart from anything else I can use the iPhone 5S one-handed. My thumb reaches across the entire screen – that’s not the case on larger displays.
The onscreen keyboard isn’t a barrier despite my pudgy, big man fingers. And the Fingerprint reader has yet to miss a beat. This is much better than tapping in a passcode to open the phone. It also works better than the facial recognition software I saw on the HTC One X.
Strictly speaking it’s not part of the Apple stack project, but the HD Voice on Vodafone’s 4G network is an eye-opener. Too often I have to interview people on flakey lines and miss stuff. That’s no longer the case, so long as the person at the other end also has the right kit.
My normal tablet is a second generation iPad. Apple’s recently released iPad Air is noticeably smaller and lighter. The Retina display makes a huge difference. I can’t say I noticed the newer iPad’s extra processing power because I wasn’t bumping up against the limits of the iPad 2.
Since June the MacBook Air has been my main computer. So little adjustment in that department.
I doubt I’ll need a spreadsheet or presentation program this week, even so I’ve loaded the iWorks apps on all three devices and they are all hooked up to the cloud so I can get at everything from everywhere.
I’ve also synced Mail, Contacts, Reminders, Calendar and Notes across the phone, tablet and laptop. Safari is on all three and linked to the cloud so I see the same bookmarks and tabs everywhere. For good measure I installed the official Twitter app on all three devices.
I’m impressed at the way I can just go to the iOS App store and quickly pull down copies of already installed apps. That makes the process of bringing all three devices into line much easier.
What might I miss?
There could be problems if someone sends me a complex Microsoft Office document. That doesn’t happen often, but it happens enough that it could cause problems during the Apple stack week. I love Microsoft’s OneNote and will genuinely miss it. I keep lots of material stored in the app, if I need it this week, I’ll just have to go without.
Although I prefer Apple’s Mail app – particularly the way it integrates with Contacts and Calendar – I often read mail in Gmail. It tends to work better when searching for something in the deeper recesses of my ten or more years of stored mail messages.