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Apple Updates iWork Suite for Mac, iOS, and iCloud

Apple has released notable updates to its iWork productivity suite on all three platforms — Mac, iOS, and iCloud — to restore missing features and add additional capabilities to Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.

The marquee feature across all platforms is the capability to password-protect iWork documents shared via iCloud. Previously, shared documents were available to anyone who had the document’s URL. Let’s look at each platform to see what other changes have come to each app, and how to password-protect documents.

Mac -- The Mac version of Pages has been updated to version 5.1, and adds a vertical ruler, customizable alignment guides, keyboard shortcuts for styles, and the option to view character counts with or without spaces. Other changes include improved precision in placing objects; the capability to create charts with date, time, and duration values; the capability to delete sections from the page navigator; and the option to start a list using new special characters.

Pages 5.1 also gains improved compatibility with Microsoft Word 2013 documents, adds an option to export password-protected documents in .docx format, preserves custom number formats in charts when importing Pages ’09 and Word documents, and claims improved EPUB export.

Numbers has been updated to version 3.1, and power users will be thrilled to know that AppleScript support is back with a vengeance, gaining even more capabilities than its 2009-era predecessor had. Numbers 3.1 also features improved sorting, enabling you to sort by multiple columns or a subset of rows. Text now autocompletes when editing cells, chart date and duration values have been added, and there’s a new progress indicator for calculations. Compatibility improvements include better support for Excel 2013 documents and export of password-protected spreadsheets in .xlsx format.

Keynote, now at version 6.1, receives a set of new transitions, enhanced presenter display options, and the option to create charts with date, time, and duration values. It also features better compatibility with PowerPoint 2013 presentations, including preservation of custom number formats in charts when importing Keynote ’09 and PowerPoint presentations.

To password-protect a shared document in the Mac versions of iWork, click the Share button in the toolbar, and choose View Share Settings. Click Add Password to set a password and a hint, and then click Set Password when you’re finished.

iOS -- On the iOS side of things, Pages has been updated to version 2.1, with the option to view character counts with or without spaces; the capability to start a list with new special characters; and support for charts with date, time, and duration values. It also features improved compatibility with Word 2013 documents, can export password-protected documents to .docx format, preserves custom number formats in charts when importing Pages ’09 and Word documents, and offers improved EPUB export.

Numbers 2.1 brings back the capability to view and edit spreadsheets in landscape orientation on the iPhone. It also adds chart date and duration values, improved compatibility with Excel 2013, export of password-protected spreadsheets to .xlsx format, and preservation of custom number formats in charts when importing Numbers ’09 and Excel spreadsheets.

The big change in Keynote 2.1 is that Apple has officially abandoned the long-neglected Keynote Remote app, instead rolling its features into Keynote — including the option to control a Keynote presentation on another iOS device.

To set a password in an iOS iWork app, open the document you want to protect, tap the wrench button, and then tap Set Password.

iCloud -- In the wispy ether of iCloud, you can finally view a list of documents that others have shared with you. In the document manager, click the clock icon at the top to see them. Speaking of the document manager, Apple has tweaked its look to more closely resemble iOS 7’s visual feel, but the redesign applies only to the document manager and the template chooser. The actual document editors retain the old design, at least for now.

Other changes that apply to all three apps are support for rich text formatting in table cells, keyboard shortcuts for precise placement of objects, improved VoiceOver support in the document manager, and the ever-present “bug fixes and improvements.”

More specifically, Pages for iCloud now lets you insert, edit, and format floating tables; insert page numbers, page counts, and footnotes; and style anchored and inline images, shapes, and text boxes. In Numbers for iCloud, you can now flow text into adjacent cells. Keynote for iCloud now enables you to insert, edit, and format floating tables.

To password-protect a shared document in iCloud, click Share in the upper-right corner of the document editor, and click Add Password on the sharing pop-up. Enter the password twice, add a hint if you wish, and click Set Password.


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Comments about Apple Updates iWork Suite for Mac, iOS, and iCloud
(Comments are closed.)

barefootguru  An apple icon for a TidBITS Contributor 2014-01-24 18:18
Thanks for the summary. Note it's only Numbers for the iPhone which regains landscape support, the iPad never lost it.
Roger D. Parish  An apple icon for a TidBITS Contributor 2014-01-25 19:16
I'm assuming that these updates are only for the Mavericks 10.9 versions?
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2014-01-27 07:14
Yes, that's correct - these are updates to the current versions of Pages, Keynote, and Numbers, not the previous iWork '09 versions. Apple hasn't changed the compatibility as far as we're aware (and we don't expect them to).
Michael Spencer  2014-01-26 04:07
I still cannot see that re-ordering pages within a Pages document can be achieved by drag/drop in the thumbnail area. Am I missing something?
Eric Stefanski  2014-01-27 08:54
IOW, still no remedy for Apple's destruction of linked text boxes in Pages.
Tom Gewecke  2014-01-27 18:05
Pages for iCloud beta still useless for RTL and Indic languages used by one billion people.
Graham Samuel  2014-01-28 02:19
I take it that the (to me) crazy distinction between word processing and page layout modes still persists, with very odd restrictions, like limits to background objects in one mode and not the other. Pages could have been a very good substitute for the long-abandoned Adobe Pagemaker, the friend to all small and voluntary organisations needing to make a good job of newsletters, leaflets etc without paying too much of getting too technical, but it's an opportunity missed, and maybe Apple are going further away from it. I simply can't understand why they don't just integrate the two modes. It wouldn't hurt the people who just want to write a plain vanilla document and it would be great for the newsletter folks. Sad.
Eric Stefanski  2014-02-14 12:29
No, they did away with the distinction by doing away with page layout features--e.g., linked text boxes. Sadder.
Michael Paine  2014-01-28 19:20
Keynote presentations created with the latest version cannot be opened on other macs with earlier versions of Keynote. This can be a nuisance.
Peter Evans  2014-01-29 11:32
Numbers 3.1 no longer supports Categories, a feature that I found most useful.
Andreas Frick  2014-01-29 12:33
It's such a shame. iWork 09 already fell behind Apple Works 6 in some aspect, now it's even worse. Apple should have given these programs new names like e. g. simplewrite or so. This won't have caused such a missreception.
Bernard Lyons  2014-01-31 12:20
All I want from Pages just now is for it to open ClarisWorks documents :(
barefootguru  An apple icon for a TidBITS Contributor 2014-02-01 13:28
From a quick Google, LibreOffice will open ClarisWorks 'text' documents, so you could do that and then save into a format Pages will recognise. Given how old CW is, I can't see Apple adding support at this late stage.
Frank Satterwhite  2014-04-01 17:09
I would love to have Appleworks back. I think Apple went over a cliff when it threw that one away.