Apple has long had a feature in MobileMe called Back to my Mac, which allows you to remotely access all your internet-connected computers’ files. Additionally, you could ever screenshare with your own computers over the internet. This feature has been very handy for me as a MobileMe user but what about Mac users who aren’t. Back to my Mac seems like the kind of feature that should have been integrated for everyone in Mac OS X from the beginning. Well now with Lion, it appears that Apple, too, has had the realization.
In Snow Leopard, MobileMe users’ other Macs will appear in the Finder’s left panel with options to ‘connect as’ (access files) or screenshare. MobileMe members simply need to put it their other computer’s login information and Apple takes care of the rest. In 10.7 Lion a new option has appeared and that is to login to remote computers with your Apple ID. The option is specifically your Apple ID (which anyone can get for free) and not your MobileMe credentials.
To us this means that anyone with an Apple ID should be able to access their remote computers with Back to my Mac. Apple has already begun the process of implementing free MobileMe features, starting with Find my iPhone (by way of an Apple ID), and Back to my Mac going free makes complete sense. What if Apple creates a standalone application to allow users to remotely login to their computer from any other Mac?
Maybe, in the future, users will always login to their Macs with their Apple ID versus a stationary username and password. This would be just like the cloud-focused Google ChromeOS notebook. Apple even allows users attach their Apple ID credentials to their user account in system preferences.
We have also been told that Back to my Mac has received a few tweaks in its Lion implementation such as easier access to AirPort disks and servers. Perhaps this will all show up in the new, free, cloudier, MobileMe. (Thanks, anonymous)