Mac users will want Microsoft Office 2004, but AppleWorks would work for many

“The arrival of a new version of Microsoft Office for the Macintosh, called ‘Office 2004,’ is on the horizon, and should be welcomed by many users,” Mark Kellner writes for The Washington Times. “No official release date has been announced, but a demo of some of its new features can be found at [url=][/url] If you are into the Mac as a productivity tool, you will want to learn about this product.”

Kellner writes, “I’ve been working with a Beta version of the entire suite for about a month. There are still some kinks to be worked out, but it’s a substantial improvement over previous Mac Office products. The new release will be close to the Windows-based Office 2003 that bowed last year. Although the Mac and Windows versions of Microsoft Office have had varying degrees of compatibility over the years, this new Mac version will be the most ‘simpatico’ for Windows users who end up with a Mac, and that’s a good thing… Mac users should stay on top of news about this program. It’s one you will want to have as part of your arsenal.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: One of the main reasons Mac users “want” Microsoft Office is simply because the rest of the world is locked into it and we need to be able to communicate with them. For users who just want to be able to read and write Word and Excel documents, but not tie themselves to the Redmond monopolist, AppleWorks for Mac (AppleWorks is also available for Windows) can do it and for much less money, US$79 and free on all new consumer Macs (iMac, iBook, eMac). Take a look at AppleWorks here.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Mac users should not buy Microsoft software – May 16, 2003
Apple releases AppleWorks Updaters for Mac OS, Mac OS X, and Windows – January 15, 2004


  1. I too find AppleWorks to be good enough for my needs. I don’t need bloatware like Office. Besides, I’ve banished nearly all Microsoft products from my computer. The only thing I have left is Media Player, and that’s only if I come across something was “unfortunately” encoded that way. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  2. You shouldnt have to do anything special to qualify for the student and teacher edition. As the woman at the Apple store told me ‘you can be a student of life…’ I swear I saw twirling flowers and felt surrounded by hippies as she said that but nonetheless they sold it to me at that price. I’m sure Apple doesn’t care as long as you’re buying stuff from them.

  3. Viridian,

    “6) I despise the fact that my wife and I can’t use it at the same time on our AirPort network (we don’t qualify for the Student/Teacher Edition and I absolutely refuse to spring for another copy.)”

    Block port 2222 at all IPs on your LAN. That’s what Office vX looks for when searching for a running app with the same s.n. It was easy with my Netgear wireless, I can’t say about Airport. I am running Excel on two computers now.


  4. Integration with a mail app is something I don’t need since I don’t get spam. I’ll probably get Office for Word and Excel just to be able to handle and such attachments from Windoze users. What I’d like to see is the Word and Excel formats be made available for other apps to open; after all, Graphic Converter can open and save to an Adobe Photoshop format, so why can’t other apps do the same for Excel and Word? ‘And pigs will fly,’ as they say….

  5. Warning to all of you Entourage users!
    Switch to Mail/Address Book ASAP. If you don’t you will regret it! At our workplace there have been 3 out of every 4 Entourage users that have had glitches were one day Entourage is working fine and the next day all of the persons personal contacts have disappeared. We haven’t been able to figure out this one, most cases were on work computers but a few times it has happened on folks home computers. Mail rocks! I also really like the fact that Apple’s solution is several different apps (Mail, Address Book, iCal) when using expose having several different apps makes the work 10 times faster! I move my mouse to a corner and select the app needed. With Entourage, clicking on a button to get to the address book and then to the email just didn’t work as slick.

  6. OpenOffice has a clunky interface, we all be old and retired in Florida before there is an aqua version, and everytime I devote myself to using it I’ve quit by the end of the day. Besides, it is just mind numbing that it doesn’t have a WordPerfect filter. I mean, jeez, who would be more likely people to switch over to OpenOffice than people who already aren’t using M$ Office.

    I really don’t like AppleWorks, it makes me feel like I am back in high school.

    So as much as I’d like to find an alternative to Word, it is what I use all the time. It is sickening how bloated the sucker is–I’ve got an old, old version of Word on a 5300c that seems to run as fast as Word v.X on my iBook–but I haven’t found anything better.

  7. Anyone notice the development of TextEdit? There’s the future of AppleWorks.

    After updating to Panther 10.3.3, I just dropped a PDF, 6 page fax, into my personal journal. To my surprise, the PDF didn’t just copy the contents of the PDF into the TextEdit RTF– TextEdit actually *EMBEDDED* the PDF into my document, all 6 pages with scroll bar on the right!!!

    I was amazed.

    With TextEdit’s access to font, *font smoothing so what I see is what I print*, colors, drop shadows, styles etc., I find myself using Appleworks less and less and TextEdit more and more.

  8. If all you need to is write the occasional letter, then TextEdit is fine. But any more than that, and it’s not really got the features needed to produce coherent documents.

    And no spreadsheet either.

    So to suggest that it’s a replacement for Office is like saying that people don’t need iTunes, they can just use the quicktime previews in finder.

  9. Appleworks stagnates, Office just keeps plodding, Occasional innovators burst upon the scene …

    I think Appleworks has stagnated over the years – when you have a program like Ragtime Solo that integrate spreadsheets, bargraphs, pictures etc. seamlessly into a document and lets you adjust all the parameters of these things effortlessly without having to switch between three different applications, it makes me wonder what is stopping Apple, (the innovator?!) creating something as good … I’m guessing that Apple has made a trade off somewhere and is happy to feed us crap, when competing with a certain company might lead to more applications being dropped from the Mac platform – ie. “It’s like Microsoft Office for the rest of your life …” (ie. it’s like HELL!)
    Maybe Steve thinks it gives Apple credibility to have Microsoft still writing Office for the Mac, but it shouldn’t stifle it’s own programs to appease Billy G.

  10. I’m a seasoned Mac-user, and I couldn’t get by in my job without the Microsoft Office Suite.

    Entourage – I like the way Entourage is integrated together, I don’t like the way Apple Mail, iCal etc are all separate. I like the fact that you can link addresses, notes, email etc to tasks in Entourage – I use this all of the time to track projects at work. This is to be enhanced even more with the next version and I’m looking forward to it. It’s a pity that this integration doesn’t sync over to my Palm, (not without buying extra software). If Apple could combine all their apps together, with the ability to link information, I’d give it a go. If they could offer the same apps on the Palm platform (or from their own PDA?) with perfect integration, I’d be there, credit card in hand.

    Excel – even though I’m a Graphic Designer by trade, I use Excel almost as much as Quark & InDesign. Sorting information, filtering data, there is no comparison to this app. Couldn’t live without it. Period.

    Word – The people & customers I deal with don’t really ask for Word format. I could (and do) get along fine without it, although I do use it from time to time, and customers sometimes supply information using this format. TexEdit can open word files, but any images are not translated over so it’s only useful for VERY simple documents.

    Powerpoint – never used it, never will, it’s useless, but sometimes my customers offer files in these formats. If I’ve a presentation to give, I’ll create it using InDesign/Photoshop and save as PDF. Acrobat has very useful presentation tools built right into it. Keynote I haven’t tried, but I would if it came bundled, or I needed to give a really impressive presentation.

    Overall I think MDN is being too harsh on Microsoft Office. The Mac BU are made up from ex-Apple employees, and it shows, we should support them. Also, Microsoft cancelling Office would be a serious blow to the Mac in corporate circles, whether we like it or not.

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