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Old Jul 11, 2013, 05:57 AM   #1
alanrocks
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Apple vs Microsoft - Pages vs Word

Hi Guys,

I recently bought the new 13" MacBook Air and was wondering if you had any suggestions on which software to run - Microsoft Office or the Apple software like Pages etc.

Opinions appreciated and this will be a big help as I will be using the software day in day out with work.

Thanks,

Alan!
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 06:03 AM   #2
ylrd
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Pages is WAY better than Word. Better UI, easier to use, smoother, better integration with the OS, faster, etc.

I say only use Word if you explicitly need it.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 06:06 AM   #3
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Pages is far better on than word, IMO.

I only use word for university work, or if there is no alternative.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 06:47 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by alanrocks View Post
I recently bought the new 13" MacBook Air and was wondering if you had any suggestions on which software to run - Microsoft Office or the Apple software like Pages etc. Opinions appreciated and this will be a big help as I will be using the software day in day out with work.
While product features are important, more important is what programs do the people you exchange office files use? That's the product to pick.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 07:13 AM   #5
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Do you need compatibility, i.e., do you need to send word documents to others? if so I'd recommend Word. While Pages can export to a word format, it may not retain the exact formatting you had set up.

I also think that Word provides more features and while I like what pages has to offer Word is a more robust product
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 07:58 AM   #6
eRondeau
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I use Pages almost daily. I have used it for everything from concert posters to 100+ page graphic-intensive reports. It is intuitive, powerful, and "Mac-like". I especially like the ability for it to start in either Word Processing mode or Page Layout mode, depending on what the project is.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 08:01 AM   #7
Menel
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Originally Posted by Fireball Dragon View Post
Pages is far better on than word, IMO.

I only use word for university work, or if there is no alternative.
Why? I always submitted PDF for school work, and I graduated 8-12 years ago. I highly recommend the same. Lots of PROs, one of which you can use any tool you want to compose documents.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 08:06 AM   #8
NewbieCanada
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If you're already used to one, pick that. If it's being used for work, pick the one used at work. If you're not a power user, it really doesn't make much difference which you pick, so go with whichever is more convenient for you.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 09:28 AM   #9
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I have both, and I do prefer Pages over Word. It fits my needs and is far easier and more flexible than Word.

However, I work in a PC centric work environment so Word is better for that in that I can open and create documents in Word without any issues whatsoever. Unless it has to do with work, I generally will go straight to Pages to create a document. Sometimes I create a document in Pages and then open it in Word and make the necessary adjustments from there so that it will be compatible with other co-workers.

I do hope that when Pages gets updated later this year that compatibility with Word will be a lot better, but then by that time Microsoft will probably update Office for Mac and make everything just as incompatible as ever.

Another thing that I love about Pages is that with iCloud, my documents are available to me on my iPad, and iPhone. I can open them up and work on them regardless of the device that I am working on. I have not come across any features missing in the iOS version from the desktop version, but your mileage may vary. That is something that is very lacking in the Microsoft programs. The new Office for 365 users is a nice first step, but very limiting and made primarily for the iPhone.

because of work, I am used to the Microsoft applications, but since getting my Mac 2 years ago, and getting an iPad when they were first released I am finding myself turning to the iWork apps more and more.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 09:45 AM   #10
printz
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It's debatable. I think that in the real world you'd be safer with Office. But let's discuss:

- Word is more expensive and has more features. In some ways it's easier to use than Pages, since it doesn't try to "think different" like Apple does.
- Pages has that cool autosave+versions feature. This means that saving happens all in the background, no stupid wait times for the document to save when you CMD-S (the Office autosave only does a shadow copy for crash backup). Also it's pretty much crash-proof (assuming autosaving happens often…), and without the annoying "document recovery" display that happens when Office crashes. All this makes the user experience quite smooth on Pages.
- Sometimes it's the operating system workspace that decides the user experience quality. For example I feel much better using Office from my Mac than the one from my Windows, no matter how much others say that the Windows Office is better. That's because when I write documents, I don't only use the word processor, I use many other programs.

For me Pages looks inviting and modern, but sometimes I'm frustrated by its lack of, or strange features.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 10:28 AM   #11
Fireball Dragon
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Why? I always submitted PDF for school work, and I graduated 8-12 years ago. I highly recommend the same. Lots of PROs, one of which you can use any tool you want to compose documents.
I submit in PDF, too. This is from a pages to PDF conversion.

Word and PowerPoint are just to open certain files and because I have to do PowerPoint presentations. Oh, and supervisors like word for adding comments for feedback purposes.

Unfortunately, although Apple has gained huge popularity with academics in recent years, MS Office is still the prevalent productivity software.
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Old Jul 11, 2013, 02:57 PM   #12
JMountainDew
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I've got both Word and Pages on my mba. Having used Word in a windows platform for many years, I had hoped that it would work well on my new mac, but it tends to freeze often. It's also missing a few features that I really relied on in the windows version (particularly two pages per sheet and booklet). I've also got GB's worth of Word documents that I need to hang onto and even re-use. But, primarily because of stability issues, all my new work (the majority of which does not need to be shared with any one else) is being done in Pages. And because of formatting differences, I have also opted a few times already to open a .doc in Word and copy and paste unformatted text into a new .pages template. I now choose to use Word only when I have to, or when it needs to be shared.

Last edited by JMountainDew; Jul 11, 2013 at 05:42 PM.
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Old Jul 15, 2013, 06:24 AM   #13
alanrocks
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Thanks for the responses guy's! I shall take all of these into consideration but by the sounds of this discussion, pages slightly outweighs word!
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Old Jul 19, 2013, 03:38 PM   #14
wbensky
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I would also suggest Pages fro these reasons:

-Pages is cheaper

-Pages has great integration into OS X and iOS with its iCloud integration.

-You can use Pages to export your document into multiple file formats, including .doc

There still is the issue of not being able to use it on windows, but that most likely isn't really much of a problem for you unless your planning on getting another computer. But, as I said, you can always export your papers into .doc files.

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Old Jul 19, 2013, 09:19 PM   #15
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Another thing that is a plus for pages i suppose is the upcoming icloud pages / numbers
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Old Jul 19, 2013, 11:38 PM   #16
mjalam2
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I work for a bank and while it is a heavy Windows XP environment some folks do use a Mac and use Pages to boot. Never had issues exchanging files with them and our volume is significant.

If your day in day out work is basically in a word processor than IMHO Pages is a no brainer - cheaper too.

Ps. I just bought the new Air as well but I am getting Microsoft office for work use because of my dependence of excel.
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Old Jul 20, 2013, 02:43 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by maflynn View Post
Do you need compatibility, i.e., do you need to send word documents to others? if so I'd recommend Word. While Pages can export to a word format, it may not retain the exact formatting you had set up.

I also think that Word provides more features and while I like what pages has to offer Word is a more robust product
How often does it mess formats up?

Say I use a font that's on Word and Pages and just a regular format for a paper report? (blank page, write name and date in one corner). Will it like completely change the font and everything or just make the spacing a little different?
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Old Jul 20, 2013, 05:33 AM   #18
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I see a number of differences going into Pages from Word and vice versa. I can't put a number on it, but the more complex document, the odds go up to that something won't look the same in word.

I use office documents for work, so I'm sending excel and word documents to my co-workers or vendors. Both MS Word and Excel provide a superior set of tools and consistency, YMMV but in a collaborative setting its best to use the Office apps imo
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Old Jul 20, 2013, 06:19 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Menel View Post
Why? I always submitted PDF for school work, and I graduated 8-12 years ago. I highly recommend the same. Lots of PROs, one of which you can use any tool you want to compose documents.
I also submitted University work in PDF format… originally created in Pages.

Styles in Word have always been a bag of hurt in my experience. I think the first version I used was 97 and I have used every version since. Sure you can workaround things and get used to it, but it always feels clunky.

Working with styles in Pages is by contrast as much nicer experience.
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Old Jul 20, 2013, 08:08 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by maflynn View Post
I see a number of differences going into Pages from Word and vice versa. I can't put a number on it, but the more complex document, the odds go up to that something won't look the same in word.

I use office documents for work, so I'm sending excel and word documents to my co-workers or vendors. Both MS Word and Excel provide a superior set of tools and consistency, YMMV but in a collaborative setting its best to use the Office apps imo
You will surely see differences. You will also see differences between different Word versions. And to me, the most infuratingly awful feature of Word is, that the layout of the same document in Word isn't stable! It is possible to add a space character or other character, which of course can change the layout, you delete that same character, and you don't get the original layout back!
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Old Jul 20, 2013, 10:33 PM   #21
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-You can use Pages to export your document into multiple file formats, including .doc

I find that Pages doesn't save very well as doc, especially when creating brochures. And of late, when I export a pages created brochure into a PDF, the pictures frequently get screwed up. It's simple, if you sharing documents with others who use Word, than use Word. If not save money and use Pages.

I receive and edit mostly word documents. So I use Word a lot but I create brochures in Pages as it is more user friendly.

Last edited by maflynn; Jul 21, 2013 at 06:58 AM. Reason: Fixed quote tag
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Old Jul 21, 2013, 11:51 AM   #22
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If you're going from start to finish and then printing off Pages is better. If, however, you need to upload or email etc. then Word is handy...though if there's little formatting then Pages is still good for exporting to .doc format.

I prefer Pages because of the simpler, no non-sense UI and style. It's much more straightforward to use. Word on Mac is still alright as it isn't as bloated as the Windows versions.
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Old Jul 21, 2013, 11:37 PM   #23
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If you need a glorified Notepad, pages.

If you plan on writing a novel or using "advanced" features, Word.
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Old Jul 22, 2013, 02:28 AM   #24
Eric Best
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Outside the box

Alan, there are a lot of choices available in writing applications. For a straight forward word processor, I prefer Nisus Writer Pro. Opens quicker and is less resource hungry than Word and has more functions than Pages. It will also open my WordPerfect documents. Scrivener is a good choice if you're doing research and want to keep notes.
M$Office is a big and frequently unnecessary investment. Check the App Store and see what is out there!
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Old Jul 25, 2013, 11:49 AM   #25
nekonari
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Another thing that is a plus for pages i suppose is the upcoming icloud pages / numbers
Recently, I got invitation to iCloud iWorks Beta, and just took a peak. I haven't really used it yet, but if this is as robust as clean and attractive it looks, I just might switch to iCloud iWorks completely.

Except for work stuff when everyone else uses MS Office suite... Ugh..
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