“Apple’s iWork ’09 ($79) is an excellent investment for Mac users who need a well-designed and easy-to-use productivity suite,” Jason Parker reports for CNET.
“Apple has significantly updated all three products [Keynote, Numbers, and Pages] to enhance and streamline workflow with numerous interface tweaks and feature enhancements. Like previous versions–to calm Windows-to-Mac switcher anxiety–iWork files are fully compatible with its Microsoft Office counterparts,” Parker reports. “iWork ’09 also introduces iWork.com public beta, a new Web service. This fledgling sharing site lets you share documents online, invite viewers who can make comments, and allows for downloads in iWork, Microsoft Office, and PDF formats.”
“Past versions of Keynote have always won us over, and new features in Keynote ’09 only make iWork better. Easy-to-use graphics tools and a variety of animation effects help you make eye-catching presentations, and a slew of new transitions and intuitive animation effects add to this presentation program’s appeal,” Parker reports.
“Pages ’09 offers feature-rich word processing and layout tools alongside intuitive graphics features to make your projects both easy to make and easy on the eyes,” Parker reports. “You also can now use data from any Numbers (Apple’s spreadsheet app noted below) table directly in Pages. But what makes this feature truly useful is that your table or graph will automatically update in Pages with the click of a button when you update data in the Numbers file.”
“Numbers ’09 has now been in the wild for a year and–with several new enhancements adding even more time-saving features–it’s obvious Apple has been paying attention to its audience. While it keeps the familiar feel of Microsoft’s Excel, Numbers ’09 offers much smarter ways of dealing with data, tables, and charts,” Parker reports.
“iWork ’09 makes many of the already user-friendly features from last year’s version even easier,” Parker reports. “iWork ’09 offers an extremely intuitive interface and has plenty of advanced time-saving features to make it a worthy replacement for the much more pricey Microsoft solution.”
Full review here.
MacDailyNews Take: Do you really need Microsoft Office? Give Apple’s free 30-day iWork ’09 trial a try and find out for yourself.