The Mac sure is starting to look like the iPhone

The general trend of macOS releases over the past few years is that it has been moving closer and closer to the look and feel of iOS. The icons have become iOS icons, and their shape has become the iOS shape, and you can now use your iPhone as the Mac’s webcam, etc. etc. This occasionally comes at the expense of other functionality (ask me how I feel about the new Settings menu), but it is the direction that Apple has clearly been heading in since (arguably) Big Sur. Every so often, other splashy features are announced (Stage Manager, Universal Control, Quick Notes) that I write a lot about and then never end up using ever again.

So, good news for Continuity fans: that’s basically what’s going on with Sonoma. Ventura looked a heck of a lot like iOS, and Sonoma looks even more like iOS. I turned my office’s Mac Studio on after installing the developer beta and thought, for a second, that I might be hallucinating my iPhone’s lockscreen. It’s remarkably reminiscent.

It’s crazy how Microsoft always seems to be doing things about 10 years before everyone else catches on, for better or worse. I’m not a fan of the iOS look, and it looks whacky and childish to me when ported to the Mac – especially since macOS has also become almost Windows-like by having so many application frameworks, some from iOS, some from macOS, and some a weird combination of the two.

It’s making macOS far messier and more inconsistent than it used to be, leaving the Linux desktop as the last bastion of people who value a dekstop-first, consistent interface. If you told me this 10-15 years ago, I’d have called you crazy, but we’re now living in a world where a GTK or QT desktop is far more consistent and focused on the desktop than Windows and macOS, which both feel lost in the woods at the moment.


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