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Posts tagged with "iwork"

Pages, Going The Distance With Word

Michael D. Shear compares Apple's Pages to Microsoft Word at The New York Times. Before you begin yawning and close the tab, let me say that I liked the angle Shear used – instead of pointing out the advanced features that Apple removed (what I have also done), he considers Pages for normal people who don't care about AppleScript and are typically fine with the basic formatting tools.

This bit about iCloud struck me as relevant:

The new version of Pages introduces an all-new sharing option, powered by the company’s iCloud service, that works remarkably well. Type in a person’s email address, click send, and that person receives a link to your document. When the link is clicked, the document opens in a web browser that looks like a fully functioning Pages application. (My mom didn’t even notice the difference.) The recipient doesn’t have to have Pages installed or have an iCloud account. It even makes Mac-PC sharing easy. The new version runs just fine in Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome or Safari on a Windows PC.

This is a solid point (emphasis mine). People like Shear's mom and my folks don't know the differences between “native” and “web” apps. Pages is Pages. Will they notice it's Pages in the browser with a URL? Probably, but I guess a good percentage of people will just call it “Pages” or “the shared Pages”.

Here's to hoping Apple will iterate on the web product quickly – the ease of sharing a document is indisputable, but it needs to be reliable and better integrated with every version of “Pages”.


Apple Announces Features Coming Back to iWork

Apple responds to iWork criticism:

The new iWork applications—Pages, Numbers, and Keynote—were released for Mac on October 22nd. These applications were rewritten from the ground up to be fully 64-bit and to support a unified file format between OS X and iOS 7 versions, as well as iWork for iCloud beta.

These apps feature an all-new design with an intelligent format panel and many new features such as easy ways to share documents, Apple-designed styles for objects, interactive charts, new templates, and new animations in Keynote.

In rewriting these applications, some features from iWork ’09 were not available for the initial release. We plan to reintroduce some of these features in the next few releases and will continue to add brand new features on an ongoing basis.

I'm glad I didn't believe Apple was a company that didn't care about advanced users anymore (as the narrative goes in some corners of the Internet these days). I still think that Apple should avoid this kind of software launches (no criticism is better than criticism, after all), but I'll take promised features over nothing. If Apple can't afford to ship more complete rewrites on day one (and it's not like Apple didn't think this would happen), being communicative about future changes is obviously better than silence (and we have plenty of precedents).

AppleScript “improvements” have been announced for Numbers and Keynote, but not for Pages (who's going to tell Pierre Igot?). Seems like a curious omission.


iWork and Automation

Peter Cohen:

But this whole issue unveils a more fundamental problem: by neglecting AppleScript support in iWork apps, Apple underserves customers who would otherwise use their products - not just big companies with IT departments, but freelance workers who want to save time, small and medium-sized businesses that benefit from workflow automation tools, and others. AppleScript may be techy, but it's pretty democratic - anyone who wants to use it should be able to use it.

I don't buy the idea that, because they are a “rewrite”, the new iWork apps can't have AppleScript. As Peter says, an automation tool that freelancers and small businesses relied upon is gone, and Apple isn't providing an alternative. Unless you keep the old iWork apps installed.


Overview: Apple Updates iLife and iWork Apps, Makes Them Free for New Customers

Perhaps today's most interesting announcements weren't new iPads or Macs, but Apple's range of software. It's been a while since the iWork suite of apps have received updates on the desktop, and iLife apps such as iPhoto, iMovie, and GarageBand looked outdated as soon as iOS 7 arrived on iOS devices in September. You're probably wonder what the skinny is around all the new apps and whether you qualify to get those apps for free. This won't be an exhaustive overview, but ask and you shall receive.

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Pages For iOS and Change Tracking

Pages For iOS and Change Tracking

Yesterday, Apple released an update for iWork on iOS that added, among changes to Numbers and Keynote, support for change tracking in Pages. I'm not a frequent user of this particular feature, but it could have come in handy when we edited my Mountain Lion review earlier this year. However, last night I noted how the way Apple implemented Change Tracking on iOS felt outdated and convoluted.

Jeff Richardson does use Pages on a regular basis and posted his thoughts on the new version (via David Sparks):

Track changes support has long been the Holy Grail for many litigators using an iPad or iPhone. For the most part, I really like the way that Apple implemented this feature in the latest version of Pages. I wish that the update included a better way to review each edit, but for the most part I suspect that I'll just scroll through a document and look at the redline edits in the context of the document as a whole so this omission is not critical for me. The lack of support for Comments will sometimes be a problem (depending upon how often you work with people who use that feature), but as long as you know about it and have an app like Documents to Go, Office2 or Quickoffice Pro, you can work around the Comments omission when it becomes an issue.

I can see how lack of Comments and Review mode can be an issue for some users. Mostly though, I believe that the interaction of Change Tracking needs to be redesigned entirely. On Pages for Mac, you can simply click on a change to review it and accept it from a sidebar on the left; in fact, if you click on the blue boxes in the sidebar you can see the blue line connecting the change to the actual text being highlighted in real time. It's a subtle visual hint, but it's there.

I'm not sure why Apple decided to go with this simpler interface rather than cooking up a completely new one, but I have a couple of theories. My first thought is that text rendering and manipulation on iOS still doesn't allow for fairly complex on-screen drawings such as the aforementioned blue lines; a second reason may be scrolling performances, especially on older devices (Pages still supports the iPhone 3GS). But I think that, overall, Apple decided to use this approach because is consistent with the current iOS text selection and because a major new version of iWork for iOS (possibly requiring iOS 6 or later, not iOS 5.1) could be on track for next year.

Apple has long touted iOS devices as heralds of the post-PC era, but iWork has been far behind its desktop counterpart (originally launched in 2009) for months. I expect iWork 2.0 for iOS to level the field in every area.


Apple Removes iWork, Aperture Trials From Its Website

The trial version of iWork '09, Apple's productivity suite that includes Pages, Numbers, and Keynote, is no longer available on the company's website for download. The company has replaced the former iWork trial webpage with a message informing customers that iWork is available on the Mac App Store.

The trial version of iWork is no longer supported. But you can easily purchase Keynote, Pages, and Numbers from the Mac App Store to start creating beautiful presentations, documents, and spreadsheets today.

On the Mac App Store, the iWork apps are available as standalone purchases priced at $19.99 each. The iWork trial webpage is still available on some international websites, such as the Italian one, although we are hearing reports that the download returns an error, reloading the webpage and displaying the same message about the Mac App Store. The iWork trial briefly disappeared last year, but came back shortly after. In March, Apple also announced the beta of (which iWork '09 supported) will be discontinued in July.

Similarly, the company has removed the trial of Aperture 3 from its website, with users on Apple Support Communities noticing the change at least more than two weeks ago (recent Apple support documents still instruct users on how to remove the Aperture trial). Aperture is available on the Mac App Store at $79.99.

The trial version of Aperture is no longer available. If you currently have a copy of the Aperture 3 Trial installed on your Mac, you must delete it from your Applications folder before downloading Aperture 3 from the Mac App Store.

The removal of trials from shouldn't come as a surprise. The company has been gradually shifting all its software releases to the App Store, including major releases of OS X and Final Cut Pro. In July 2011, Apple also shut down the Mac OS X Downloads webpage, redirecting customers to the Mac App Store. Apple, however, still has a trial of Final Cut Pro (which is sold at $299.99 on the Mac App Store) available on its website, suggesting that more expensive software may still receive support for trials in the future.

Apple has been rumored for over a year to be on the verge of releasing a new version of iWork, although such rumors never materialized in a finished product with substantial new features. Apple released compatibility updates to introduce Lion support and bug fixes, but avoided implementing direct iCloud integration back in October, requiring users to manually upload and download documents to sync through According to more recent speculation, Apple may release an updated version of iWork with Mountain Lion, which is on track to become available sometime this summer. [Thanks, Luca]

iWork for iOS Updated with iCloud Integration

The iWork apps for iOS, available for the iPhone and iPad at $9.99 on the App Store, have been updated today with iCloud integration, which will allow users to store their documents in the cloud, and have changes pushed instantly to all their devices, as well as the iWork document interface on You can find the updated versions of Pages, Numbers and Keynote in the App Store now.

I have been testing iCloud support in iWork for iOS in the weeks prior to iCloud's launch, and it works flawlessly. As Apple demoed at WWDC in June, you can create a document on Pages for iPhone and that document will be stored in iCloud and pushed to other devices; as you start editing the document, changes will also be pushed to the cloud, and back to the devices configured with your iCloud account that have iWork installed. Unfortunately Apple isn't providing a new version of iWork for OS X with iCloud support built-in, but users can visit to download and upload documents created with iWork on iOS. iCloud integration works with the folder-based system that was introduced in iWork for iOS earlier this year: you can create folders, and manage documents inside them.

iCloud makes it easy to move Pages, Keynote, and Numbers documents between your computer and your iOS devices. Just sign in to in any modern web browser, and all your iWork for iOS documents will be there — complete with your most recent edits. Click a document to download it in iWork ’09, Microsoft Office, or PDF format. You can also drag and drop any iWork ’09 or Microsoft Office document from your computer into one of the iWork apps on, and it automatically appears on all your iOS devices, ready for you to review, edit, or present.

Full changelogs below. Pages also received support for dictation through iOS 5 and iPhone 4S.


  • Automatically store your presentations in iCloud and keep them up to date across all your iOS devices.
  • Download your presentations to a Mac or PC at as Keynote ’09, PowerPoint, or PDF files.
  • Drag and drop Keynote ’09 or PowerPoint presentations to from your Mac or PC to have them automatically appear on your iOS devices.
  • Use AirPlay to present wirelessly via Apple TV. Navigate slides, view presenter notes, and use the laser pointer while presenting from your iOS device.
  • New builds and transitions including Anvil, Blinds, Color Panes, Comet, Confetti, Diffuse, and Sparkle.
  • Advanced presentation controls including looped slideshows and autoplay.
  • Support for slide-to-slide hyperlinks.
  • Improved compatibility with Microsoft PowerPoint and Keynote ’09.
  • Includes improved support for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean language input.


  • Automatically store your documents in iCloud and keep them up to date across all your iOS devices.
  • Download your documents to a Mac or PC at as Pages ’09, Word, or PDF files.
  • Drag and drop Pages ’09, Word, or plain text documents to from your Mac or PC to have them automatically appear on your iOS devices.
  • Use your voice to create and edit Pages documents with dictation in iOS 5 on your iPhone 4S.
  • Create footnotes and endnotes in your documents.
  • View improved word counts with character, paragraph, and page counts.
  • Improved compatibility with Microsoft Word and Pages ’09.
  • Includes improved support for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean language input.


  • Automatically store your spreadsheets in iCloud and keep them up to date across all your iOS devices.
  • Download your spreadsheets to a Mac or PC at as Numbers ’09, Excel, or PDF files.
  • Drag and drop Numbers ’09, Excel, or CSV files to from your Mac or PC to have them automatically appear on your iOS devices.
  • Use sliders, steppers, and pop-ups to easily enter data and explore results.
  • Use Merge Cells to format your tables.
  • Hide and show rows and columns.
  • Improved compatibility with Microsoft Excel and Numbers ’09.
  • Includes improved support for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean language input.

Apple Seeds iWork for iOS Beta Apps With iCloud Support

Following the launch of beta to developers, Apple updated its iCloud beta for Developers page including special versions of the iWork for iOS apps. Labelled "iWork for iOS beta apps" by Apple, the package includes new versions of Pages, Keynote and Numbers for iOS that will allow developers and testers of iCloud to start working on a new document on a device, and find it after a few seconds on another iCloud-connected device or the web counterpart, which also comes with web apps to edit documents.

The functionality was first demoed by Apple at the WWDC in June, and an iOS developer program membership is required to test the new iWork beta apps.