Will Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 Features Match Windows?

Since the Family Tree Maker 2012 pre-sale and release date announcement, I’ve been asked whether the Mac version will have all the same features as the Windows version. I asked that question of my contact at Ancestry.com and quickly got the reply that all the features of the PC version will be in the Mac version [I have since recieved a retraction email from the Family Tree Maker Product Manager; please disregard the optimistic remainder of this post]. Feature parity is great news for Mac genealogists.

We made it through the awkward period of Family Tree Maker 2011 on the PC and 2010 on the Mac. We get a sort of double Christmas; we get all the enhancements from the 2011 and 2012 versions with only a four to six week delay. More importantly, it signals an intent to maintain equality between PC and Mac versions.

I’m all for this change. Mac genealogy needs some serious competition to move it forward.


  1. Judy says

    Oh, WOW!!! Thanks so much for this updated, Ben! I’m one of those folks who has been about to give up completely on Ancestry so this is good news.

    The problems with FTMM 2010 didn’t bother me nearly as much as the lack of information, response and updates from Ancestry in the past year. I went back to Reunion and have been seriously considering allowing my Ancestry.com subscription to expire.

    If the company follows through with what they told you, I’ll absolutely gamble the money to give FTMM 2012 a spin, though. Will be looking forward to more updates from you — SO glad you were chosen as a Beta tester!

  2. says

    That is great news! I am very excited to see the next version. Not sure if I believe that 4-6 week delay though. I would love to stay with Reunion, but you have to wonder whether they plan to upgrade Reunion or not. It has been way over due!

    I do find myself frustrated waiting for a modern version of Genealogy Software for the Mac.

  3. Keith Riggle says

    To me, the most important feature of FTM 2012 is syncing with my online tree at Ancestry.com, and if the Mac version includes this, it will be worth buying, although it would be nice if FTM adopted price parity as well as feature parity. It’s ridiculous that Mac users had to pay a higher price for a vastly inferior product than the Windows version. Now if only FTM would include some of the better features of Reunion, which is still a great product. If I want to search my tree for something besides a name, I use Reunion. What Reunion lacks and FTM provides is integration with online databases. Reunion needs to partner with one of Ancestry.com’s competitors to provide this feature. Doing genealogy in the “cloud” using social networking seems to be the current trend.

  4. says

    I asked the Ancestry.com reps at the FGS conference the same question, but they gave me a different answer. They told me it’s using the same codebase as FTM 2010 for Mac, so it’s still a version or two behind FTM for Windows. However, it will be able to sync with online member trees. That’s really the only major new feature for both platforms. On this point, I agree with Keith Riggle; syncing was the only feature holding me back from buying any desktop genealogy software.

  5. Judy says

    I agree 100% with your comments, Philip and Keith. Reunion is a wonderful app, but it’s rested on its laurels far, far too long. It’s hard to understand the lack of response when so many Mac genealogists are begging for good software and are willing to pay for it.

    Family Historian, I sure hope the reps at FGS were mistaken. If what they told you is true, I definitely will NOT be buying the new version of FTMM and probably won’t renew my Ancestry.com subscription. There are other paid reference sites I would like to try but haven’t because of the cost of my Ancestry.

    Ben, we’ll all be anxiously awaiting more updates from you. 😉

  6. Judy says

    Hey, Ben, this is NOT the update I wanted to hear. 😉

    Seriously, thank you — this is exactly the reason I follow your posts. Sad news for Mac users, though — sure feels like we’ve been down this particular garden path before.

  7. Lisa Wilson Grant says

    I have a MacBookPro laptop but I still keep my PC with its Family Tree Maker as I am SO disappointed with Mac Family Tree – I have 16,000 in my tree and with its bizarre graphics that look like Weebles and hard to print at legible sizes, I can’t wait until I can have a reliable Family Tree Maker product on my Mac laptop. I will continue to follow the updates, however because it would be cool to be able to have portable reports that are legible.

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