Apple announced that the three iWork office applications (Pages, Keynote, and Numbers) will now be available on all iOS devices such as the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. This has been a dream come true for many users, especially busy business people on the go who access documents from their iPhones and tablets. But how efficient is it and can a lot of work get done with these apps?
The iWork office apps can provide some form of productivity but it could reach a limit. Reasons are not because of the app itself but the limit of the smaller device's physical hardware. These could be in the form of the touchscreen keypad, preventing users from fast and accurate typing. Unlike the iPad's larger screen and capability of working with a Bluetooth keyboard, the iPhone or iPod touch's keypad will block a good portion of the already small screen. This may not be a large issue for minor edits, but restricting full view of documents while working may become annoying when trying to do serious office work.
Users may find more efficiency in transferring edited files onto their Macbook or computer and start working with a keyboard and mouse. Files can then be shared using iTunes. It will also be very interesting to see Apple's future work with the cloud and how iWork office can improve work efficiency through sharing files using that technology.
The three apps mimic the standard programs you see on Microsoft office such as Word, Excel, and Powerpoint. Each app allows the user to access, tweak, create, and run files created with the iWork office platform. The apps were available on iPads in 2010, and now it is formatted to work on smaller Apple devices running iOS4.
Apple users interested in the apps can pick up any of the three from the App Store for $9.99 each. According to reports, an upside for certain iPad users who previously own a version of the app is that upgrading onto your other Apple device, such as the iPhone, can be done for free.
If you own an iPhone 4 or 3GS, or any third or fourth generation iPod Touch, it may be worth it to check out these new apps and see for yourself if it will enhance your productivity with power users access for creating office documents, or just a nice feature to make minor edits on a document.