Macbook Pro Necessities

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by February1088, Feb 28, 2010.

  1. February1088 macrumors member

    Feb 21, 2010
    Well assuming that the refresh is coming soon, and I have my eyes set on MBP. The thing is, I'm a PC user and this is my 1st switch to Mac. Although I knew PC has better bang for the buck, I was reeled it by Apple's tempting design and their OS.

    I have a few questions that I need answered:

    1) What programs are a must for a University student like me? I will need to be able to use a word document on Apple, and I assume that they don't come with some kind of word document program with the base? I heard mixed reviews about iWork and Microsoft Word for Mac but both can open/save word documents correct?

    2) For what occasion do people get iLife / Mac OS Snow Leopard or are they not really required?

    3) I am searching for a hard shell cover for the 13 inch MBP and I've been looking at the speck case and the Macbook pro case (

    I heard rumors about the speck case scratching up/not fitting 100% with the regular macbook and I was wondering if you speck users experienced the same thing with MBP? Which one do you guys recommend?
  2. Mew2468 macrumors regular

    Apr 11, 2009
    Home of the 2010 Winter Games
    I can answer 2 of your questions . . .
    I would go with iWork - I recently started using it and I love it (way better than Microsoft Office for Mac). The iWork Suite can open Microsoft Office files.

    iLife and Snow Leopard come on all Macs. And the OS is pretty important to using the computer. :)
  3. mikes70mustang macrumors 68000


    Nov 14, 2008
    Your going to have to get word, there is almost no way around it. For notes, outlines, or anything else, pretty much everything revolves around word and powerpoint.
  4. Mew2468 macrumors regular

    Apr 11, 2009
    Home of the 2010 Winter Games
    Pages, Numbers, and Keynote can export their files as .doc(x), .xls(x), and .ppt(x).
  5. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Yeah, 80% of the formatting is correct 75% of the time. Just get Office.

    If you get a new Mac it will come with both pre-installed.
    I don't bother with hard cases, so someone else will have to answer this one.
  6. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

    Jan 28, 2009
    I agree. I very rarely have to edit Word documents, but when I do there are almost always stupid idiosyncrasies that crop up with the formatting. If you are serious about doing any work with Word documents, you really need Office. If I didn't simply create documents for myself, I'd buy Word. :)
  7. kasakka macrumors 68000

    Oct 25, 2008
    iWork is just fine. If you are opening documents with Pages you are usually just reading them so any small formatting issues are irrelevant. I find that when you make the documents yourself they work just fine in Word.

    But above all I find iWork much easier to work with than Office. Numbers ain't all that but Pages and Keynote work great. I'm currently writing my Bachelor's thesis in Pages and if the formatting fails then I can just import it into Word at school and do the formatting there.
  8. peskaa macrumors 68020


    Mar 13, 2008
    London, UK
    Buy Office. The Student & Teacher edition isn't expensive at all, and it saves the compatibility issues that you will run in to. Minors ones to be sure, but still annoying.

    iLife and Snow Leopard are included with all new Macs, so don't worry about that.
  9. randy98mtu macrumors 65816


    Mar 4, 2009
    We bought iWork and later bought Office. Just save the middle step and buy Office. I don't use them that much, but my wife uses them all the time and the 80% 75% of the time sounds about right from her experiences and is why we upgraded to Office.

    I'm interested in the Speck or Bodyguardz too. I'm leaning toward Bodyguardz though as I really like the sleek design and think it will add less to it.

    I think you'll enjoy the Mac experience. I bought an iMac 1 year ago and recently bought a Mac Mini and a 13" MBP. I'm close to being PC free. :)
  10. Hmac macrumors 68020

    May 30, 2007
    Midwest USA
    I think iWork has some nice features and is more reliable than Office, but Office isnt that bad, and for compatibility that's the way you should go if you're a student using it for school.
  11. moocat macrumors member

    Jan 30, 2010
    Norman, OK
    Don't pay a dime extra for Word or iWork just download Open Office - it's free and fully compatible with all MS format stuff!
  12. kasakka macrumors 68000

    Oct 25, 2008
    While it's good for a free app, I find iWork and even Office is a lot easier to use and that matters - I like how iWork rarely frustrates me, unlike Office and OpenOffice.
  13. Thiol macrumors 6502a


    Jan 26, 2008

    I teach. And most of academia uses Office. If I have to import a Powerpoint file or Word doc, it is often imported incorrectly.
  14. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2009
    You also have the option of exporting your Pages docs as pdf's, which are bullet proof and will look the same on any system (mac or PC) with acrobat reader. I think this even applies to the fonts you use, which are embedded in the pdf file.

    I have come across the odd formatting issue with imported word docs, but it's only ever been minor. I'm a big fan of iWork.

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