Apple makes some great products, but you don’t always need the latest and greatest in order to have an amazing experience. So let’s talk about the products and configurations that we would recommend to someone who’s thinking of switching to Apple or of expanding their existing ecosystem. So, let’s go and find out the best Apple Ecosystem 2022.
Starting with a laptop, Apple recently released some incredibly powerful MacBooks, and there are more coming soon. But for the overwhelming majority of users, we highly recommend the M1 MacBook Air. It’s thin and light, making it extremely portable. But at the same time, it’s still very solid. You can take it with me when you travel, and you will love the fact that it doesn’t add a ton of weight.
The 13.3-inch display is plenty good for the majority of things. And when you need more, you can always connect it to your ultra-wide external display or use your iPad with Sidecar. Moreover, the M1 MacBook Air also has outstanding battery life at 18 hours, and you can easily get through a full day of use without needing to charge it.
Now, you may have read posts about the 14 and 16-inch models of the MacBook Pro, and yes, both of those are significantly more powerful. Both have more processing power, more ports, more types of ports, larger, higher resolution, and noticeably better displays. They also have ProMotion, which is Apple’s adaptive refresh rate of up to 120 Hertz. So essentially, the display is able to detect in real-time, what type of content is being viewed. And then it’s able to optimize the experience either for the fastest refresh rate or to preserve battery life.
While we completely appreciate those benefits, people love MagSafe for charging. For the average user, those features are nice to have rather than a need. And they aren’t likely to be worth paying almost twice as much. So unless you’re a pro and you have very specific needs, the M1 chip on the MacBook Air is more capable than what most people need, and we would recommend going with 16 gigabytes of unified memory or RAM, and then at least 512 gigabytes of internal storage. Now, remember that neither can be upgraded later on, and this laptop should last you for a long time. So make sure that you get enough of both. Now, some users may want additional internal storage for convenience.
Now, let’s move to the iPhone, and you may end up being surprised by our selection. So Apple offers four different iPhone 13 models. We’ve got the 13 mini, the regular 13, the 13 Pro, and the 13 Pro Max. Well, we think it’s fair to eliminate the 13 Pro Max because it’s the most expensive,
and it’s the biggest phone, which may not make it the best choice for the majority of users. If you do want the largest display and it’s in your budget, by all means, get it. It’s a great phone. But it’s a lot of money for someone who’s just starting out.
So this leaves us with three options and all of them come with the A15 Bionic chip. They all have the same water and dust resistance rating of IP68. All three have a super retina XDR display, and we think that most people will be really happy with either the regular 13 or the 13 mini.
So let’s talk about 13 Pro because it has a better camera system and better battery life. It also has Apple’s 120 Hertz adaptive refresh rate, which we saw in the new MacBooks. And while we do like it, we just don’t see it being a huge deciding factor for the majority of users. Yes, the more responsive UI looks better and people do prefer it when playing PUBG because they can set the game to 90 frames per second. But for most people, it’s probably not worth the $200 move from the regular 13 to the 13 Pro. Your actual user experience is still going to be great.
The 13 and the 13 mini are still extremely responsive. They have plenty of processing power, and the camera system is very good. It’s not quite as good as the 13 Pro, but you need to ask yourself, how well do you need your cell phone pictures to actually be? If you’re a camera nerd, like, then it does make a difference. But for most people, it’s probably not that meaningful. The price difference between the 13 and the 13 mini, at least in the US, is a hundred bucks.
These are devices that you carry with you all day every day, and they’re essentially identical in terms of performance. So if you have smaller hands or you just prefer a smaller device, the 13 mini is a great choice. If you want a larger display and two additional hours of battery life, then get the regular iPhone 13.
When it comes to a new iPad, Apple has five excellent choices at the moment. The entry-level iPad 9, the small and compact iPad mini 6, the versal iPad Air 4, and then the 11 and 12.9-inch models of the iPad Pro.
We think that the iPad Air 4 might give you the best combination of features and performance, but you really can’t beat the iPad 9 when it comes to value. The iPad 9 comes with a 10.2-inch display and a very capable A13 Bionic chip. It’s available with 64 or 256 gigs of internal storage.
If you’re just using it to read this post, to take notes, to check out social media, surf the web, and then play a few games, 64 gigabytes will work just fine for you. If you’re looking to store a lot of photo and video files, if you’re looking to play a lot of big games, or if you regularly work with large files that must be stored locally, then go ahead, quadruple the storage to 256 gigs, and you should be all set.
Now, Apple has a great history of long-term support for its iPads. The eight-year-old iPad Air 2 is still compatible with iPadOS 15. So make sure that you get enough storage to allow you to use this device for as long as you want.
Now, a great feature that’s available on all the current iPads is Sidecar, which lets you use your iPad as an additional display for your Mac, MacBook, or iMac. People use this feature with all of my iPads, and it’s amazing to easily have a dual display set up on the go or third display with their stationary system. When you don’t have wifi, you simply set up your iPhone as a hotspot, connect to it from both devices, and you are good to go.
Now, let’s talk about a few reasons why someone might want to go with a different iPad. So first, the iPad 9 is the only iPad that doesn’t have a fully laminated display. Meaning that there’s an air gap. For almost everything that you do, you will never notice the difference. But if you’re using the Apple Pencil, you’ll see that there is a separation between the tip of the pencil and the content that’s being created.
On the other iPads, the display, the touch layer, and the cover glass are fused into a single piece of the display assembly, the image looks like it’s painted right on top of the glass, and the tip of the pencil looks like it’s touching the content that’s being created. If you’re an artist, you’re probably going to enjoy the drawing experience on a fully laminated display, but plenty of users have happily started with the iPad.
Now, one thing to keep in mind is that the iPad 9 uses the first-generation Apple Pencil, and all the other iPads use the second-generation pencil. So if you know that you’re going to upgrade. If you want that pencil, go ahead and save your money now until you can buy the iPad and the pencil that you want.
Now, one advantage of the iPad 9 display is that if you crack the glass, most of the time, you aren’t actually damaging the display itself. And the replacement cost for the cover glass is much lower than having to replace the entire display assembly on the other iPads.
One other advantage of the higher-end iPads is that they have speakers on both sides, and then the iPad Pro models have four speakers. So if you’re planning on using these speakers to listen to music, to watch movies, or for gaming, keep that in mind. Now, personally, we love the 3.5-millimeter headphone jack on the iPad 9. It’s currently the only iPad to have this feature and allows to use of a wired gaming headset for outstanding and lag-free audio.
And speaking of audio above brings us to another part of the ecosystem, the AirPods. Now, Apple currently offers second-generation AirPods, the newer third-generation AirPods, the AirPods Pro, and the AirPods Max. We think that we can all agree that the $450 over-the-ear AirPods Max is not going to be the one that we are going to be recommending to someone who’s just starting out. The audio quality is fantastic; the active noise cancellation is top-notch. Moreover, they automatically switch between all Apple devices. Also, they have spatial audio, and they might have the best Transparency mode of any headphones that we have ever used. But $500 just isn’t going to work for the majority of people. And with them being over-the-ear headphones, they just aren’t the most practical option.
Of the other three options, the ones that are most comfortable to me are the second-generation AirPods. The AirPods Pro has the best features. They have the best passive noise cancellation, and they’re the only ones of these three that have active noise cancellation. But the silicon tips just aren’t comfortable and they’re also the most expensive. They are light, comfortable and also they never fall out. Users still have wireless charging for the case. They automatically switch between our various devices, and they also happen to be the least expensive model at $129 approx.
Now, speaking of a desktop. We can’t say enough good things about the M1 Mac mini. This compact desktop has the same M1 chip as the MacBook Air that we recommended. So we already know that it’s plenty capable. We have a super sleek and clean design, two USB-A ports, two Thunderbolt 4 ports, an HDMI port, and a headphone jack.
Furthermore, for people who use a lot of SD cards, they add a USB-C hub, which gives them more ports. Additionally, it moves some of the ports to the front so they don’t have to reach around the back of the device to plug things in.
The Mac mini sells for 699 with 256 gigs of internal storage and eight gigabytes of RAM. But keep in mind that just like the MacBook Air, it cannot be upgraded. So we would recommend getting 16 gigabytes of RAM, and at least 512 gigs of internal storage. The M1 chip is going to be plenty powerful for the vast majority of users. And we would rather have you get a little more than what you need. So you can save money in the long run. We would 100% add an external SSD, again, because it’s much less expensive and also because it’s a stationary desktop.
So there’s really no downside to having an SSD always plugged in. Now, moving forward, the price of external storage will continue to go down and the transfer speeds will go up. So that means that you can continue to get more and faster external storage without having to pay a premium.
Now, another option for a desktop is the M1 iMac. It’s all-in-one, it’s super clean, but most users will already have a display, a mouse, and a keyboard that they can use with the M1 Mac mini. So we think it’s a fantastic value.
The bottom line- Best Apple Ecosystem 2022
What’s nice about this collection of products is that the value of the ecosystem grows beyond the sum of its parts. The different components play really nicely together, it’s simple to share information between devices. Hopefully, this article about the best Apple Ecosystem 2022 will help you with what you are searching for.
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