Need Office on your iPad now? Try these capable alternatives (screenshot gallery)

Need Office on your iPad now? Try these capable alternatives (screenshot gallery)

Summary: We may not see Office for the iPad until late 2014. Don't worry though, there are plenty of capable alternatives available now, especially when you consider people don't do much heavy lifting on a tablet.

TOPICS: Mobility, Apple, iPad, Tablets

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  • (Image: Screenshot by Matt Miller/ZDNet)

    Office2 HD supports many spreadsheet functions

  • (Image: Screenshot by Matt Miller/ZDNet)

    Office2 HD supports many spreadsheet functions

  • (Image: Screenshot by Matt Miller/ZDNet)

    Documents To Go: Word document formatting

Topics: Mobility, Apple, iPad, Tablets

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  • From the article: "people don't do much heavy lifting on a tablet"

    Most people aren't MS Office power users and, therefore, don't do "heavy lifting" on their desktops and laptops either.

    This is why Google's QuickOffice, via native client in the Chrome browser, could be interesting for the Windows, OS X and GNU/Linux desktops. [At the moment, this feature is available only in the Chromebook Pixel.]
    Rabid Howler Monkey
    • any word

      when it's coming to the browser/other chromebooks? I'm doubtful it will really be that good based on what the android app looked like before google bought it, but I'm interested to take a look. android and chrome have some decent office suites, but I'm not totally satisfied with any of them.
    • You are full of it

      How pathetic that the same losers who claimed the year of Linux every single year, keep claiming the year of the demise of MS Office every year. First it was Corel Office, then OpenOffice, and now the last victim is QuickOffice

      • Surface ...

        ... is the answer. Doesn't it blow away all alternatives? When you are running Office, it really is Office. I would think that would be the only way to go, not these lightweight pseudo-office things.

        Not the Pro either, just the Surface.
        Schoolboy Bob
  • ms office on ipad

    You can run ms office on your ipad by using software such as thinserver

    • Touch interfaces were invented for a reason

      Good luck trying to complete your thesis using a touch screen VNC as an interface for full blown office.
      Alan Smithie
      • It works just fine on my tablet

        "Good luck trying to complete your thesis using a touch screen VNC as an interface"

        I use remote desktop on my Surface RT and it works just fine.

        Oh right, I forgot, ipad doesn't support any precision pointer devices and has the industry's worst keyboard support.

        Once again proving that the problem isn't with the software or the workflow, the problem is that many of you simply bought the wrong device.
        • remote desktop?

          I was under the impression that the Surface RT was coming with a local MS Office installation and this was it's strength over the iPad?

          Was the MS Office removed from the Surface RT during some firmware update? Or you prefer remote desktop? It can't be that MS Office on RT is unusable, right? :)
          • Windows RT comes with Office 2013

            now the remote desktop is there too for doing more stuff at your work
    • Office is also available using Skydrive on the iPad

      You can also use the web version of MS Office on the iPad just by opening a document in Skydrive. I use the iPad version of the Chrome browser for this. If I remember right, if you use Safari you can view a document but not edit (I may be wrong on this since I haven't tried it in awhile).

      My resident iPad writing app is QuickOffice. I find it more intuitive for my use, and more Word document friendly than Pages which I also have. Also, QuickOffice handles password protected Word documents which the Skydrive web version of Word seems to reject (doesn't recognize the doc file). The problem with QuickOffice and password protected Word files is it asks for the password, opens the document, allows you to edit it, but then saves the file in unprotected form. I don't know of any iOS friendly app that will write out a password protected word document that MS Word will recognize. If anybody does know of one, it would be great if they post the information here.
  • Android

    I'm partial to Office Suite Pro on Android. I don't have much of a need for Office suites but to the limited extent I do I like this package. One thing I like about it that you don't find on other office suites is a selection of fonts to choose from. Surprising how much being able to choose your font adds to the word processing experience.

    One thing I find puzzling is that the suite seems to support all sorts of formatting options that cannot be created natively with the app. So I've created a bunch of template documents so I can open them up and edit. I've got page templates with page numbering and columns and stuff like that. The app obviosuly supports them, and supports editing them. So why can't you natively create them?

    Very peculiar.
  • Or do what I did, dump the ipad and get a good tablet

    None of these workarounds or bandaids or issues with my Surface RT.

    It just works.
    • Sucky keyboard on surface

      Except their keyboard sucks...just tried one out and I hate that crappy little felt thing for typing
      • it wasn't difficult to understand

        even if you just left your signatures there saying its not good
  • I laugh at the idea

    of anyone trying to do powerpoint or spreadsheets on an iPad. it can't even use a mouse.
    • You know, the keyboard

      I use a BT Keyboard with my iPad and it has, wait for it, arrow keys. For years they work just fine with Spreadsheets.
      • arrow keys alone

        are not enough. on a large spreadsheet you would still have highly reduced productivity.
        • Not really...

          Being productive away from a laptop and being able to work on the spreadsheet is pretty good.

          Also... I don't know if this came up, but it does have a touch screen. I use numbers and cloud on just fine on my tablet.

          There's hybrids and flip tops, netbooks, basically power office is best done on a 13 inch plus laptop or desktop. Everything else is a compromise of portability. I have a Bluetooth keyboard that I rarely carry: that's what my air is for - portable full computing. I just can't be bothered to carry a whole bunch of pherials with a tablet.
    • I laugh at the idea too

      Who in their sane mind will do a Power Point presentation on an iPad, when they can use the more powerful Keynote? :)
  • Which Quick Office are you using? Mine sucks!

    Cause my QO Pro on the iPad sucks big time.

    Use it without a keyboard and the on screen keboard never remembers the setting when changing cells. It constantly defaults to _not_ the regular keyboard. It's been a bug for over a year. They know about it and fix nothing.

    Use it with a keyboard and the arrow keys don't work for navigating cells.and it defaults to editing vs navigating.

    It's slow to load spreadsheets and just not that good at all. I only use it because I don't want to waste my $20.