Stories by Ryan Faas

  • 12 valuable tools for managing business Macs

    The knock on managing Macs in business environments has long been Apple's ambivalent attitude toward providing significant enterprise support. Apple does, of course, offer tools for deploying, configuring, and managing Macs. But to move Macs beyond a departmental setting, IT will often find it necessary to look to third parties for help.

  • Caution: iOS 5, iCloud and the iPhone 4S in the enterprise

    Apple's iOS 5 and the new iPhone 4S, which went on sale Friday, are packed with new features, many of which should boost the productivity and on-the-road capabilities of professional users. But, as with many consumer-oriented mobile platforms making their way into the workplace, iOS 5 and iCloud service present some serious challenges in business environments.

  • How Steve Jobs changed Apple...

    Entire books have already been written on the contributions Steve Jobs has made to Apple, the company he helped found 35 years ago. In many ways, the most significant ones took place after 1997, when he returned to Apple from exile and set about to change not just the company but entire industries.

  • Will OS X Lion roar in the enterprise?

    Since its release on July 20, Apple's newest version of OS X, known as Lion, has been bought, downloaded and installed by more than a million users. As an operating system, it represents a new paradigm: Apple's desktop platform is becoming more iOS-like. To date, most of the focus has been on new features like gestures, Mission Control, the new download-based install process, and user interface tweaks that are the biggest since the OS X public beta was introduced in 2000.

  • Can HP's webOS and TouchPad slow down the iPad?

    More than a year after its introduction, Apple's iPad continues to dominate a tablet market that has grown crowded with a variety of would-be rivals. Most of these are Android tablets like Samsung's Galaxy Tab and Motorola's Xoom. (The Xoom became the launch vehicle for the tablet-optimized version of Android, better known as Honeycomb.)

  • How the Apple iCloud compares to Google's cloud

    Apple and Google now dominate the world's smartphone and mobile device markets and both are now pushing quickly into the cloud. While Apple this week finally acknowledged the cloud as the future of computing -- and will finally allow iPads and iPhones to be set up and backed up without being tethered to a computer running iTunes -- many Google fans accurately note that Apple's iCloud doesn't bring a lot of new features to the table.

  • Windows 8, from an iPad user's view

    The Windows 8 demo from the All Things Digital conference left me kind of confused. More accurately, it left me thinking Microsoft is kind of confused. Perhaps most important, it left me thinking that most end users who pick a Windows 8 device are likely to be confused.

  • Apple WWDC: Why this year is different

    Apple did something really unusual this week: It pre-announced what it's going to talk about next week at its big Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). For many companies, talking up new products, technology roadmaps, earnings estimates and overall plans is standard operating procedure. For Apple, it's unheard of. The company always keeps its plans quiet until they're actually announced -- even if most Apple watchers have some idea beforehand. That's what allows Apple CEO Steve Jobs to offer up his signature "one more thing" when he speaks.

  • Apple's OS X server strategy: Data centers for everyone

    Recently, Apple previewed more features that will be available in its upcoming release of Mac OS X 10.7, "Lion." We first got a glimpse of Lion at Apple's Back to the Mac event in October, when CEO Steve Jobs said that several technologies developed in Apple's iOS mobile operating system would be brought back into Mac OS X as part of Lion. Since iOS evolved from earlier versions of Mac OS X, the "back to the Mac" moniker made sense.

  • Mac OS X: Make Snow Leopard (and other cats) roar like Lion

    With a second preview version now in the hands of app developers, Apple's next generation of Mac OS X, called Lion (Version 10.7), appears to be on track for its planned release to the public this summer. The company has announced several new features for the upcoming Macintosh operating system (some of which are lifted straight from iOS, Apple's mobile platform) including the following:

  • Apple's Lion: A marriage of iOS and OS X

    Apple's Back to the Mac event yesterday was preceded by plenty of speculation. Some of it was dead on -- such as predictions of revamped MacBook Air models -- while some of it missed the mark a bit: Apple didn't unveil a touch-screen iMac (in fact, CEO Steve Jobs referred to the idea as "ergonomically horrible") and, while FaceTime is coming to the Mac, it is as a standalone application, not as part of iChat.

  • Windows Phone 7 could rival Apple's iOS 4

    With all the features of Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 now out in the open -- along with details about the handsets available on AT&T and T-Mobile here in the U.S. -- comparing the new mobile platform to Apple's iOS 4 is a natural. The long-running debate about Windows vs. Mac can now move into the world of mobile operating systems.

  • RIM's PlayBook vs. tomorrow's iPad

    RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook, unveiled last week, is the latest entry in what has become a rapidly growing field of iPad competitors. But unlike most upcoming Android tablets -- the big exception being Cisco's Cius -- the PlayBook isn't meant to compete with the iPad in the consumer market. Despite its touted capabilities for multimedia, the PlayBook is primarily designed to be a business and enterprise tablet.