iWork '08 vs Office '08 (or 2004)

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by asdfTT123, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. asdfTT123 macrumors regular

    Nov 1, 2007
    I've been an avid MS Office Suite user for my entire life, but ever since I purchased my Macbook I've had a positive take on Apple software. I've been looking at iWork '08 and I was wondering if someone could give me a comparison of it vs the current Office '08 or '04. I'm a college student and I frequently use Word and Excel for papers, lab reports, and organizational tools. From what I understand, iWork has it's own equivalent counterparts. Do they support .doc and .xls extensions and is it fully compatible (both ways) to Office? Also, does iWork deliver a better user experience overall? Thanks for the input.
  2. bacaramac macrumors 65816


    Dec 29, 2007
    I haven't used full use of excel and have fairly basic spreadsheets.

    I have issues with conditional formatting and a few other little things. If you require Excel, then stay with Excel. Personally I like iWork as anything work related I have my work laptop and I think Numbers is great for the fairly basic spreadsheets that I create for personal budget, etc.

    You can export iWork files to office, but may have some items that don't transfer 100%. I think iWork is by far a lot better user experience.

    EDIT: Try the free trial and see if you like it.
  3. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    I see some formatting just not translate correcting to Word on Windows from Pages. PDF is perfect though. I think if certain rules are followed with iWork then it is possible to save and retrieve everything fine. I just don't know what all the rules are besides not picking a font that doesn't exist on Windows.

    It is the little things that I miss in iWork. For example, numbering by letters in Pages or Sorting excluding the headings and selecting the column header in Numbers. I like the filter feature in Excel. Numbers and Pages are easier to make better looking output though.

    After looking at the Office 2008 reviews, I am going to look past the limitations of iWork and realize that 90% of the stuff these apps do is going to have to be good enough. I have Office 2004 for emergencies and to verify the spreadsheet or word document from iWork still looks ok.
  4. iota2 macrumors newbie


    Jan 19, 2008
    If you use Excel and Pivot Tables then Numbers is not your choice. Numbers doesn't handle Pivot Tables... It has its own way to cater this functionality.
  5. freddy77 macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2008
    Since Apple allows an iwork '08 free trial period of, I believe, 90 days, why not download and work with it. If you like it better than Office for Mac you can purchase it on line or at a store. I have been trying to make up my mind also. While I like iwork a lot, there are one or two things that I would really miss about Office. One of them is that labels (and not just address labels or whole sheets of labels) are quite easy to make in Office (Word). At best, there are inconvenient workarounds for iwork (Pages) but nothing directly designed for doing them. On the other hand, iwork isn't as bloated as Office. It really comes down to what features are most important to you. Good luck. :)
  6. yeroen macrumors 6502a


    Mar 8, 2007
    Cambridge, MA
    I'll probably only buy Office 2008 because I was strong-armed by the gf into buying the slow-as-molasses Office 2004 (slow on Intel, that is), and if I'm going to have Office on my Mac, I might as well have something to show for it (yes, I know the logic is contorted).

    Otherwise, iWork (and LaTEX) does everything else I need it to, and does it prettier.

    For you, perhaps you should just buy both now and enjoy the choice later.
  7. freddy77 macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2008
    A correction from my earlier post. The trial period for iwork '08 is 30 days, not 90 as I originally stated.
  8. aiterum macrumors 6502


    Nov 17, 2007
    United States
    I would say that since you are already familiar with the microsoft counter parts of this product, then there really is no reason to swtich to another system.
  9. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Therefore there is never any reason to switch. Windows users take note.
  10. phytonix macrumors 6502

    Jan 26, 2006
    I found Word 2004 to be very slow compared to Pages.
    Word 2008 keeps crashing on me.

    I feel Pages and Keynote are better user experience. I like the freedom of Numbers.
    And for EndNote, I can always edit in Pages, insert temporary reference by copy and paste, and then export to Word 2004 and format it there. Scrolling through pages of documents, Pages feels much smoother than Word.

    However, iWork is not as powerful or feature rich compared to Office.
  11. carrotsandsmart macrumors newbie

    Jan 7, 2008
    I have also switched to MAC recently, and have been a heavy Office user in a university environment - If you use many of the features of Office, you will probably be happier to stay with it; While I like iWork, it is lighter than office. One thing that I find about Office - I use the bibliographic software "Endnote" on office, and haven't found anything with features that are any better, that in itself is reason for me to stay with Office.

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