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One of our biggest frustrations with OS X is its inability to share files with iOS devices at the system level — a problem that OS X Yosemite will finally address with AirDrop with a new feature called Handoff.
Apple senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi followed by a rousing look at many of OS X Yosemite's new features on Monday with the introduction of a number of new ways to interact between the Mac and iOS devices called Continuity.
First up is AirDrop, which finally allows file transfers between an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad to the Mac as well. No more need for third-party apps, everything you need will be built right into the operating system.
Handoff uses AirDrop as a jumping off point to enable different devices to actually communicate with others — start composing an email on an iPhone and immediately finish up with Mail on OS X Yosemite. Best of all, Continuity can work even when Wi-Fi isn't available by tapping into an available iPhone cellular connection with Instant Hotspot, right from OS X Yosemite.
Even more exciting, OS X Yosemite now allows iPhone users to make and receive phone calls or standard SMS text messages from the desktop and iPad. Click a phone number link in Safari, and Yosemite will place the call.
To demonstrate the Wi-Fi calling feature, Federighi placed a call to new Apple hire Dr. Dre, the hip-hop legend and Beats Electronics co-founder who inquired what time he should show up for work.
OS X Yosemite will be available this fall as a free update for OS X Mavericks users, with a public beta release to be released this summer for Mac owners who want to be first to give it a spin.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter