Step by step, day by day, we’re getting close to that location on the space time continuum whereby everything we want and need works on every device. Well, at least Microsoft thinks that idea is a good notion and should be part of the new world order. Think “Open in…”
Finder And Files
As much as it seems Apple has dumbed down macOS while bolting on Mac-like features to iOS for iPhone and iPad, one thing has been missing here and there. Command-O on a Mac and you get the famous “Open…” pop up dialog box. From there you can search around the Mac to open a file in whatever app you opened. iOS does not have a red, white, and true blue Open… dialog box but it’s close and now it works better with Office apps– Word, Excel, Powerpoint– on iPhone and iPad.
Within most iOS apps you’ll find the so-called Share Sheet– the box icon with an arrow through it. Open your Files app in iOS and tap to select a file. With iOS you get Share Sheet options, and one of them is “Open In…” That’s the case now with Office apps. Open in Excel, Open in Word, Open in PowerPoint.
Come on. That’s kinda sorta mostly like using apps with pop up dialog boxes in macOS, right? Office apps in iOS used to have the “Copy To…” option because “Open In…” is better.
What is happening to iOS is what we have taken for granted in macOS for a couple of decades. Workflow. As much as I enjoy using an iPad and think the iPad Pro is the future of personal computing devices with larger screens, iOS is not macOS High Sierra, and iPad is not a Mac. The workflow between the two devices that use similar apps is not the same. The Mac is more efficient thanks to keyboard input and those glorious, unappreciated pop up dialog boxes “Open…” and “Save…” You can do kinda sorta mostly the same thing in iOS but not in every iOS application– not even in Office apps before the recent update– and not as efficiently as in macOS.
The iOS File app is not the Finder. File lets you find apps on iPhone, iPad, or iCloud, while Finder is packed with functionality not available in iOS, and certainly not as accessible.
When using iPad Pro with the Smart Keyboard I miss keyboard shortcuts available on corresponding applications on the Mac. I miss the damned mouse and trackpad on the Mac, too, and quickly grow tired of moving hands off the keyboard just to touch a menu on the iPad’s screen– which requires fingers, hand, wrist, forearm, and shoulder.
Gimme more keyboard shortcuts, Apple, and make them work in every application so my hands stay where they’re supposed to stay. On the keyboard.
Alas, Apple seems to think the Mac is so last century and in the future everything we don on a computing device will be done sans-keyboard and fingers only. That’s BS. Keyboards rock. Using so much of ones body parts just to make a selection on a screen does not improve the workflow.