Apple seems clear on the matter of iOS vs. macOS. Never the twain shall meet. That does not mean you can’t get the best of both worlds. Thanks to faster bandwidth and VNC, I’ve been using my iPad Pro as a Mac.
VNC? Think Virtual Network Computing, a floating standard that goes back decades, but basically allows one computer to connect to and control another computer. Your Mac has this built in already with Screen Sharing. A Mac on a local network can share the screen of another Mac. Under the right conditions, a VNC application can make that happen across the public internet.
What does that have to do with an iPad?
There are many VNC apps for iOS and macOS. I’ve tried many. I use Remotix. The user interface seems to be more Apple-like and some features are not available on competitor apps. What Remotix does is kinda sorta mostly what Screen Sharing does Mac to Mac, except in this case, it’s iPad Pro to Mac.
Think Mac screen on iPad Pro. What’s missing is multi-touch control with your fingertip, but the Mac’s screen pointer works perfectly with your fingertip so you can control what’s on your Mac from the iPad’s screen (works great with iPad Pro, but very well on iPad, surprisingly on iPhone’s diminutive screen).
Remotix setup is straightforward on a local network, but requires proper hardware to work across the public internet. You’ll need your Mac’s username and password.
Once setup and connected, pretty much everything you can do on your Mac can be done on the iPad’s screen.
Remotix uses hardware accelerated H.264 encoding to speed up games and videos. Sound? Got it. Full encryption end-to-end? Check. macOS and iOS clipboard sharing. Of course. Gestures on the Mac? Surely you jest. Uh huh. Multiple displays? Control each one or select from all.
There is plenty going on in the background to make Remotix turn your iPad’s screen into your Mac’s screen, but in the end what you get is exactly what you want and expect.
As much as we might like to see more synergy between iOS and macOS, Remotix makes it rather simple and straightforward to get your Mac’s screen onto the iPad’s screen.
Issues? Oh yeah! But less with Remotix than internet service providers and router makers. The right hardware and bandwidth make using VNC a pleasure. The wrong router or network and slow bandwidth brings plenty of headaches.