Switching to Mac? You’ll need these apps

Apple Get a Mac XmasadRaise your hands: how many of you got a Mac for Christmas? You’re probably still adjusting to the new feel and look, using the Dock, dragging applications from the disk image to install them and getting to grips with things like Time Machine, Spotlight or Boot Camp. Macs are pretty intuitive to work with but, as with any new system, they’ll take a little bit of time to become familiar with. One of the most confusing things for new Mac users though is being introduced to a completely new environment with new software that you’d never heard of before on PC.

Always one to think things through, Apple have set up a little guide on how to move to Mac, to guide you through the transition. And who hasn’t seen yet the excellent series of Get a Mac ads? I’ve also thought it worthy to offer you a little list of Mac programs that you should have on your brand new computer. Not all of these are absolutely essential, and I’ve surely left out some big names as I’ve decided to limit it to ten programs, but most of these are highly useful and part of my everyday use as a Mac owner. That said, feel free to let me know if you think of a Mac program that I’ve forgotten. It’ll help new users know what they should be setting up on their Mac. Also make sure to check out Paul Stamatiou’s excellent list of 10 apps.

  • VLC Media Player – Because you’ll be using your Mac to watch movies, shows and series and you don’t want to worry about having the right codecs or if the video format is compatible. Just click and play.
  • Firefox – Safari is a good browser but Firefox is better because you can add all sorts of extensions. The upcoming 3.0 version is supposed to be better than ever.
  • uApp – Nothing easier than uninstalling apps on a Mac, but with uApp you’ll make sure to get rid of all associated files at the same time.
  • unRarX – So you can quickly extract and merge RAR files.
  • Transmit – It’s good to have an FTP client around just in case you might have to connect to a server or specific network. This one is easy to use.
  • Pixelmator – Much cheaper than Photoshop and gets you initiated to image retouching in a sleek dark interface.
  • Transmission – Digital life just wouldn’t be the same without torrents, and Transmission is definitely the torrent client to get on Mac.
  • OmniFocus – Jot down notes, organize them and prepare your projects all in the Getting Things Done way and a flexible interface.
  • WhatSize – Just so you can check out what’s taking up space on your drives and clean up your Mac every once in a while.
  • Sofa Control – One of the cools things with the latest Macs is the remote control and Front Row. With Sofa Control you’ll be able to control any app at the flick of a thumb.
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