What about your iPhone or iPad? There may come a day when Microsoft launches Office for iOS, but in the meantime we can choose to think different and become productive the Apple way.
Apple’s Version Of Office
As it is with many millions of Mac users, at work I’m saddled with a Windows PC and Office (Excel, Word, PowerPoint). At home, on my personal devices, I have choices.
To be honest about productivity, I was quick to jump on the iWork bandwagon which brought Numbers, Pages, and Keynote to my iPhone, and then my iPad.
I was not as quick to use Apple’s polished productivity apps, probably out of lack of necessity.
After all, that iPhone screen is awfully small. Office documents love screen real estate and Numbers, Pages, and Keynote are no different.
So, it took me awhile to begin to use iWork’s apps for iOS. With iCloud and iOS 6 it became easier to manage iWork documents, and move them back and forth between Mac and iPhone and iPad.
What you get with the iWork suite (sold individually on the App Store) is a miniature office suite.
Numbers, for example, comes with 16 Apple templates, but also opens, views, and edits Excel documents.
Each Numbers (or, Page and Keynote) document can be opened on one device, saved, then continue to be used on another device.
Visually, the iPad version of each iWork app is a bit different than the iPhone counterpart, primarily with screen layout (bigger is better).
What’s surprising about using Numbers, Pages, or Keynote on the iPhone and iPad is how quickly you can adapt to creating and editing spreadsheets, word processing documents, or a presentation.
It doesn’t happen quickly, but it happens. Blame that on screen real estate. Somehow Apple has managed to cram a Mac app into the iPhone’s screen and still make it work.
Most of the functions are the same as in the Mac counterpart. Pages will open text files, Word files, and even import files from Mail or Safari.
Drag Word or Excel documents to iCloud.com on your Mac and they automatically appear on iPhone or iPad. Apple’s use of autosave is exactly a feature every app should have.
Make an edit, change a font, drop in a graphic, and the document is saved and synchronized. After slaving over Microsoft Office during the day, it’s a pleasure to use a more graphical app in Pages, Numbers, and Keynote on my iPad.
Admittedly, I still have a problem getting as much done on the iPhone as I would like. It’s that screen real estate issue again. More is better. Microsoft may launch a version of Office for iPad and iPhone users, but most of what we really, truly, deeply need to do can already be accomplished from Mac to iPhone to iPad.