Do I Need an iPhone to enjoy a Mac?


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 22, 2014
Amityville, NY
I currently have a Nokia Lumia 1020. I am about to purchase a new iMac that will be for work/personal use. Also this will be my FIRST Apple / Mac OSX computer. Finally making the switch & EXTREMELY excited, anxious and sadly nervous...

I have currently have my Lumia 1020, A Lenovo Laptop w/ Windows 8, and a Xbox One.

Now everything in my Microsoft "Eco-System" works together flawlessly.
Between my PC & Xbox with SmartGlass to taking 41MP photos and seeing them on my SkyDrive on my Xbox or PC.

I feel an iMac would disrupt everything.

One thing that is a main concern is that im subscribed to Xbox Music & I love it.
Being able to listen to anything and download unlimited songs to my actual storage on my Lumia is awesome. Also Windows 8 has an Xbox Music App/Tile to stream.

I also have seen the cool things in Mavericks such as sending directions from your computer to your phone, iBooks and more. Which obviously you can't send it to WP.

I also don't think there is a way to sync my photos if I got an iPhone to my SkyDrive (automatic uploading) so I can view on my Xbox but that wouldn't be a huge thing. Also iOS has SmartGlass which I love to use.

I have had iPhones before & I would easily get an iPhone 6 when released. The one main thing holding me back is not being able to download songs to my phone from Xbox Music. I know there is an app but it only offers offline listening for playlist.

I would love to go convert fully but I feel everything would mess up.

Let me know what you think. :rolleyes: :apple:

Jessica Lares

macrumors G3
Oct 31, 2009
Near Dallas, Texas, USA
You'd be actually surprised at how well it works.

There is a Windows Phone app that you can sync your Lumia with. I use my 520 with it and it works well.

Your OneDrive stuff will also sync perfectly with the Mac app:

Xbox Music has a web player too. Just wrap it with Fluid ( ) and you'll have your little app to play it. You can even access it from the menubar if you'd like. :D

You're not missing out on iBooks, a majority of people use the Kindle app instead.

You probably use HERE Maps? (Apple Maps has been a disaster) I think the collections sync to your Nokia account. You could also make it into an app an access it from the dock or whatever.

Small adjustments maybe, but otherwise you won't have an issue with the Lumia. Nokia actually made a specific sync app for the 1020 pictures and Macs actually.


macrumors 604
Mar 11, 2013
I think of my devices as separate entities that work well together, not as dependent on each other.

I had my Mac before my iPhone and iPad and love it. iPhone is only convenient.


macrumors 6502a
Jan 11, 2009
New Brunswick, Canada
While I've been enjoying the connectivity since buying my iPhone, you definitely don't need one to have to enjoy a Mac.

I owned two Macs, both for at least 2 years before buying my iPhone. While they didn't sync as well with my android as I would have liked, that really just made me dislike my android more than my computer haha.

Macs make you want to love them and I'm sure you will. Not having an iPhone is certainly not enough to make a Mac not feel as good. It's a bonus to have but not a necessity.


Staff member
May 3, 2009
I'm on a windows phone and I'm not running into issues. True MS' ecosystem is not as seamless as Apple's but I sync my iTunes music no problems at all and everything else seems to work ok.


macrumors 68030
Apr 25, 2012
I have an Android phone and tablet. Some of the things you mentioned have 3rd-party apps (in some cases Google apps) on the Mac to replace the functionality that would have been built-in with an iOS device. 2 that come to mind are Music and Drive. Other functionality is built right in; I can sync my Google mail, contacts and calendar to the OS X apps for those functions. As for Maps, that's no different than using your browser to go to Google Maps, get directions and save them to your My Maps, then it can be pulled up from any browser or mobile device signed in with that Google account.

So, no, you don't NEED an iPhone to enjoy your Mac. While my example is a primarily Google-centric one, there may be similar functionality for WP devices. If not, maybe you DO want to make a change for your mobile device if you want to get a Mac that bad, if those features you can't replace are important to you. But, you may have 2 options for replacement. There's even an XBox Music app for Android.


macrumors 68040
Mar 3, 2008
When I got my first Mac I was walking around with a Palm Treo. Then I got a Blackberry. Finally, an agonizing 3 years after it was introduced I got my first iPhone and I've been kicking myself ever since...

...for waiting so long.

I got my first iPhone in the era of mobile me which means a LOT of the integration that exists today wasn't there. I was just so ecstatic to have my contacts, calendar and notes sync wirelessly (through mobile me). I had enjoyed the ability to hotsync via wifi on my Palm TX but I'd been dealing with a cable ever since. I won't belabor the issues I had with Blackberry on my Mac other to mention BB Desktop Manager and Mark/Space Missing Sync are two programs I hope I never ever see again on this earth.

So what do you get for having a Mac and an iPhone? These might or might not be useful to you so I'll merely list them and let you decide:

1) Wireless backup to iCloud, though Apple charges higher than market prices for storage beyond 5GB.
2) Contacts sync: Lightning fast. Flawless.
3) Calendar sync: Works with iCal. Flawless.
4) Notes sync: Separate Notes app since Mavericks, I'm instantly able to open notes on my Mac that were taken in a meeting on my iPhone or iPad.
5) Photostream: Automatically pushes photos to your Mac.
6) iCloud docs sync: Works for Pages, Numbers, Keynote and numerous 3rd party apps.
7) Ability to instantly send a page I'm viewing on my Mac to my iPhone or iPad with one click of a free bookmarklet (3rd party app Ansible)
8) Automatic App Updates: A huge time saver on both OSX and iOS.
9) iTunes store: Ability to "restore purchases" from the cloud and stuff just shows up if I ever wipe or replace my device.
10) Ability to buy stuff from my phone and get it wirelessly. I know this is possible in Google Play but the experience of buying something in the iOS app store is seamless. The only thing I think is lacking is the ability to buy something in a web browser and send it to either my Mac or my iPhone (which is something that could be done in Google Play).
11) Image capture. The ability to shut off iTunes sync and allow Image Capture to transfer videos and delete them to free up space on my iPhone is something that is valuable to me.
12) Robust user interface. This is nothing to be trifled with. Android does a number of things in a round about way to avoid stepping on Apple patents. For most smartphone tasks, Apple did it first and did it best, or came along later and still managed to do it better than the competition. The same cannot be said for iOS features that Windows Phone or Android try to mimic. Often they are a fuzzy reflection of the iOS experience. Case in point: Do Not Disturb. Try setting this up on Android and you are faced with the luck of the draw from dozens of third party apps. Who knows which ones do or don't work or how bad they are or whether they will destabilize your device.
13) Robust hardware. If you are a Mac owner, you already know Apple knows how to build hardware that is not cheap junk. As a Mac owner who later became an iPhone owner, I have found this to be true. And yes I've had issues with my iPhones over the years and yes Apple has made me whole. Every. Single. Time.
14) OS and Hardware from one company that knows what they are doing. 'Nuff said.
15) Fast/seamless transfers to a new device. I had all my contacts on my first iPod Touch, iPad, and iPhone before even leaving the Apple store and there was no cable transfer involved. It was all through Mobileme or iCloud. Very nice. The only hiccup is that the new device backup won't begin until after you delete the old device backup due to limited iCloud space. Apple really should waive this for a month whenever you upgrade to a new device.

This isn't intended to be a complete list but it is a list of the things that I use or that come to mind. I don't bother much with Apple Maps unless Siri is giving me directions. I do listen to music on my iPhone but not that much. I tend to buy most of my music from Amazon using their "autorip" because I find Amazon's CD prices to often be lower than album prices on all 3 major music stores (Amazon, Google Play, iTunes).

I'm not saying you can't have a good experience with an Android or Windows handheld as a Mac owner. I'm just giving some insight on my experience after moving off of a relatively horrible platform (BB OS) to come to iPhone.


macrumors 6502a
Jan 31, 2012
Northamptonshire, England
I've been using Macs for the last 15 years with a variety of different phones.

Yes, with iPhone it undoubtedly is a better relationship with iCloud providing background syncing and backup of absolutely everything you do, the calendar sync is amazing for work and the seamless contact updating is also a massive bonus for me.

However, with a few tweaks and alternatives you can do similar things using other programs so you won't be disabled by the mix in systems. Once you have the iMac and get used to finding your way around you'll realise just how beautiful OSX is. It's simply awesome to use. However, you could also 'dual boot' Windows as a partition drive and continue to use your Microsoft environment as well. This could work for you indefinitely, or until you wish to switch to iOS (if you ever do).

Congrats on making the thought process start and I hope you will follow through and enjoy the fresh world of computing you'll experience.

There's a wealth of knowledge on this site and everyone is always happy to help.



macrumors 68000
Oct 9, 2012
I've been using Macs for 20+ years. Never had an iPhone. Love my Macs!