Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by semicolon, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. semicolon macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2012
    I'm about to get my very first Mac (yay!) and I see I have the option of purchasing Pages/Keynote/Numbers for $19.99 each. How do these compare to the Microsoft equivalents? I'm a college student and will definitely be using Keynote and Pages plenty (may not need Numbers but may get it just in case) so I want to make sure I have the best program.

    So should I go for it? Or should I choose iWork or a different app?
  2. ckmoose macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2012
    Pages, numbers, keynote are from the iWork suite. I have the iWork suite and Microsoft Office for Mac. Can't really say for the basic stuff I do I like one or the other more.

    I do have pages, numbers and keynote on my iPad, so linking via iCloud my documents I really like. Not an option really with Office and iPad.

    Plus with iCloud, you can access from any computer with Internet... As long as it has pages, numbers or keynote on it...
  3. spacepower7 macrumors 68000

    May 6, 2004
    First off, you're going to be a college student in the US I assume from your location. depending on your college, you may get a great discount on MS Office

    IIRC, MS Office for a Mac was <$12 for 2008 and <$14 for 2011. It depends on your colleges size and purchasing power, and other random thing.

    What are you studying and how much do you have to share files with other people?

    If you are doing a solo project, iWork is fine, if you have to collaborate, Office is good.
  4. foidulus macrumors 6502a

    Jan 15, 2007
    Just my 2 cents

    Here is just my opinion on the iWork vs. Office debate:

    Keynote >>>>>> Powerpoint
    Keynote is just a joy to use, and the only software I actually enjoy creating and giving presentations in. Its really easy(once you learn some of the tricks) to make really sharp looking presentations, and unlike its Microsoft counterpart, it wont be crashing every few minutes.

    Pages is better than Word, but the difference isnt nearly as pronounced with Keynote. The biggest issue with Pages v. Word is that the .docx compatibility isn't 100% in both directions, and you can pretty easily end up with some messed up formatting.... What I usually do is write something in pages(much nicer when actually creating documents) and send it in PDF(OS X ftw! Any app that can print can make an . If it is something that other people have to be able to edit, then I use Word because I have an ALMOST 100% chance of it looking the same on my screen as it does on theres.

    Numbers: I tried to like Numbers, I really did, but it just does not feel as developed as the other 2. If you are going to be doing a lot of spreadsheets, go Excel....

    Now hopefully Apple will actually release an iWork '12 to remedy some of these issues.
  5. randomhkkid macrumors member

    Dec 30, 2010
    A word of warning, if you are getting a retina mac Microsoft office looks terrible on it as it has not been 'retinized' yet.
  6. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    I found Numbers saved as Excel looks terrible on Excel. It takes the different tables on a sheet and makes them into separate sheets in Excel because of a limitation of Excel. Sharing documents as PDF instead of exporting to Excel, Word, Powerpoint is the best way to use iWork in a college or office setting.
  7. malman89 macrumors 68000

    May 29, 2011
    For simple ease of mind regarding compatibility, just get MS Office 2011. Excel > Numbers, Keynote probably > Powerpoint (but who uses either besides once a semester or printing slides if your class does them?), and Word > Pages. Pages has some cooler features if you're making flyers or something, but for straight word processing or note taking, Word is more than sufficient.

    The last thing you want to worry about is saving something in .pages and being unable to open it in a computer lab or library. Plus MS Office at your college might cost $10-$70 max depending on your university.
  8. bf2008 macrumors member

    May 28, 2008
    Hi. If you're used to Office functionality and you think you'll need Office, you'll be wasting your time and money with Pages and Numbers.
    Numbers is just complete rubbish. You can't even do an XY correlation graph with multiple series. It's very confusing to use too for people used to Excel.
    Pages is not as bad, but it's still very limited compared to Word. You can't do cross references, numbered captions, citations, etc, etc, so it's completely useless for college.
    They say Keynote is good, but it's not very compatible with Word and Excel, so if you have to add data from those, then you're stuck.

    I think iWork is just good for people who need to do really basic stuff, like writing a letter, doing a basic spreadsheet and prepare a presentation without adding stuff from Word or Excel. Then I kind of see their point given that they are cheaper than Office. However, you can also use Google docs, which does the same stuff, or open office, which does it even better!

    It's a shame iWork is so bad, but obviously apple is not interested in this market. Actually, I think they don't know how to beat Microsoft, so they are basically not even competing. Quite bad because it'd be a good marketing strategy to make a software that it's better than Office and works only on Mac.

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