As a lot of you who are friends with me on social media or the like may know, I am huge when it comes to Apple products from a business standpoint.
Since the very first Apple product I ever owned back in 2004, which was a 1st generation iPod shuffle to, at that time, mine and my wife's iPod mini, I have seen Apple go through a massive amount of effort when it comes to the field of accessibility.
In 2005, my wife divorced me, and I am saddened to say that probably 90 percent of it indeed was my fault. Through this, I was left with a few chalenges. Firstly, I had to find a job to support my living. Though I was very technically inclined, as I still am today, technology was not where it now is in 2019.
I always wanted to go into the field of ministry outreach , as I felt a huge calling in that direction. The problem was, I really didn't know where to start from a mobility tech standpoint. Remember that this was even before the iPhone existed, let alone Voiceover being implemented. At that time, Voiceover was in the beginning stages on the Mac, with OSX 10.5 Leopard, but I, as many of us, didn't have the funds to be able to afford such a system. I knew however that if I wanted to get into the field of employment, the Apple lineup of products was the direction I needed to take.
I cannot tell you all the lengths I went to try convincing people to either donate me a mac, or something I could use to get my own ministry business solidified. However try as I may, I was never successful.
Fast forward now to 2011. At this time, my dad was incredibly sick with cancer. Honestly, we probably were kidding ourselves by thinking he was going to make it through. Long story short, by now, I still had no job, and though I had by this time an iPod Touch 3rd generation, I really wasn't the most fond of it. I had some basic apps on the device and maybe a few songs here and there, but nothing extravagant to write home about.
At that time, I had a few contacts in the iPod, and the ability to set calendar alerts and such, however it really didn't help, as I had no mobility short of taking the device somewhere and having it be basically a brick until I got it on a wifi network. And even that was a bit finicky at best.
I needed something more. So right before my dad passed away, I decided, after hearing things about it being accessible, to try Android, which at the time was up to Android 2.2. We'll just leave it to say, that was a dreadful nightmare! Android has gotten much much better since, and though I do use it now on occasions, and love the bit I do use of it, I still feel like Apple has really been much more reliable from a productivity standpoint.
Once my dad passed away, I went into a very very very deep depression. I won't bore readers with the specifics of this, 1, as it's very private, but 2, we'd be here forever. Suffice it though to say, I was emotionally dying inside.
At that time, I knew Android wasn't the answer, but I also knew whatever it took, come heck or high water, I absolutely *had* to find a way to get into the Apple ecosystem. I knew I had to start my business. I owed it to my dad. Further I knew, my depression wasn't healthy, and I needed some way to come out of it.
So, I went to my church, and after a small bit of convincing, I managed to get the church to fund me a white polycarbon macbook, which at that time came with Snow Leopard. This definitely helped tramendously, as I now had a way to journal, keep my contacts in a unified place, do e-mail on the go, etc. I still however had the problem that I needed a way to be not only mobile, but to have content sync between my laptop and my mobile PDA, phone, or whatever I chose to use.
In August of 2011, my depression hit an all time low, putting it mildly! Again, I won't go into the detail of this, but I finally decided the time had come. I was either going to have to risk not having money the rest of the month, but possibly have something to keep me busy and my mind off the depression, or I could keep sitting on my soap box feeling terrible all the time.
I chose to take the former. I went to my local AT&T store, and got a 4th generation iPhone. Once I started adding contacts into my new phone, I then began exploring ways I could both personally use my phone on the go, as well as deploy my business into the device. I researched how to use the Calendar, set up my e-mail, and began trying to find apps which were accessible to enhance my phone's abilities.
This is when I ran across the Applevis community. My life has been transformed ever since!
Having now been a mac user, and an iPhone user for the mobility side of things as long as I have been, I have to say that both devices, but especially my iPhone has not only been a lifesaver for me in the business realm as well as personal side of things, but more importantly, it has been a healing part of my life.
I now have a reliable way that I can privately journal my thoughts. I have multiple contact groups enabled under the contacts app, one for home, and one for church/work. Further, I'm able to stay connected with those I care about over social media like Twitter and Facebook. I know any time I need to talk to someone, as I'm feeling down, usually at all times, a friend out there is only a few taps away. Don't get me wrong. The iPhone will never replace having local physical friends in my area. But having the device really does help.
Further, I'm able to keep reminders with the Reminders app which remind me to pray for those in need through my ministry work. I never had a really reliable way before the iPhone to do this.
Finally, one major stress reducer for me is listening to any type multi-media.
It is so nice being able to use my noise cancelling Sony bluetooth wireless headphones, and discretely go down stairs at night, and grab a snack, unwind from the stress of my day, and watch a movie I bought from iTunes, or stream something over Netflix, Prime Video, Apple Music, Spotify, Audible, Bard, etc, and the accessibility that these app developers have brought forth to the Apple platform is absolutely nothing short of just plain awesome!
Now, eight years after my true journey with Apple products started in a very serious way, I look back and wonder how I ever managed to get by before hand. I now am successfully running my ministry outreach which was my dream, and have really been able to stay a lot less stressed, as every night, I know that I always can grab my phone, and not just use it for business, but can have some fun listening to music, thanks to Apple's efforts to make things accessible, or I can play a game, catch up on the news, my local sports teams, etc. And, if I ever run out of things to do, Applevis is just a few taps away into Safari, or, just a few keystrokes away on my mac.
I love hearing stories about people who have used Apple devices and scream about how wonderful Apple is doing with accessibility. That however said, in the comments to this thread, I really would be more interested in hearing from others like me who don't mind being maybe a little vulnerable, maybe not so, but either way, sharing how the Apple lineup of products has helped you with your daily living not so much from a accessibility standpoint, but more from an independence standpoint.