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A Week Without Windows: Days Four And Five, Week Two


So the second week of my experiment with abandoning Windows went particularly badly. Which is strange, because I was expecting it to be a much easier task running on Apple than running on Android.

To be fair the problems I experienced may just have been misfortune, but I found that using a Mac instead of Windows 10 to be a frustrating and limiting experience. 

First of all, after disappearing in the last couple of OS X versions, two bugs have reappeared in macOS Sierra. The Kernel panic problems, which cause my MacBook Air to crash and reboot at incredibly inconvenient times; and the graphics driver problem with corrupts my display (internal or external) requiring a reboot to clear.

At least with the latter I am able to continue using the MBA and can save any work in progress.

That problem should be resolved by a clean install of macOS - it has certainly worked when the problem has previously reared its head in older OS X versions. However, had I been reliant on my MBA for day to day operations I'm sure the reappearance of these issues would have been sufficient to put me off Macs for life.

Operationally macOS misses out on some features that I rely on - although admittedly they are features that are pretty obscure. 

For example, I regularly use Continuum to remotely control my Lumia whilst working at client sites. This ensures that I keep unrelated traffic off the client's network and allows me to effectively handle competing project requirements seamlessly. Projecting the screen of my phone to my laptop and using the latter's keyboard and trackpad for control gives me two machines in one.

There is no way that I know of to gain the same functionality using Apple equipment. The best that I could contrive was to use my iPad as a standalone device - which looks unprofessional compared to the seamless and invisible Windows solution.

The absence of a touchscreen and stylus input means that I'm either swapping between my MBA and iPad for note-taking, or using keyboard input to capture notes. 

I found it easy to get back into the habit of using an iPhone and an iPad. However the iPad just doesn't cover enough of my computing use cases to mean I can leave the MBA at home.

I'd have desperately liked to have had good things to say about Apple's ability to hand off iPhone activity to other devices, but by the end of the week I was still no closer to seeing any notifications or SMS messages anywhere but on the iPhone. 

So after two weeks how have my thoughts on Windows 10 changed? All I can say is that its good to be back! The presence of services like PushBullet and SideSync would provide me with enough functionality that I could switch to an Android smartphone at the point when that decision had to be made, for now Windows 10 remains far and away the best desktop solution for me.

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