Apple’s iWork for iCloud beta seeded to consumers; brings iWork to Windows PCs; may be free, hurting Microsoft’s Office 365

“After introducing iWork for iCloud during its Worldwide Developers Conference and sending invites to registered developers soon after, Apple has begun inviting normal users to test the software according to a number of MacRumors tipsters,” Jordan Golson reports for MacRumors.

“iWork for iCloud offers in-browser versions of Apple’s iWork software suite, including Pages, Keynote, and Numbers,” Golson reports. “The software can be accessed from both PC and Mac computers as well as a number of mobile devices. It is expected to be released to the public later this year.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacNN reports, “The online version of the three iWork apps — Pages, Numbers and Keynote — is not believed to be intended to replace the local Mac and iOS versions, but instead complement them with a way to use the programs from any online device — including, for the first time, Windows computers.”

“The web apps, first announced at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June, offer nearly mirror-copies of the existing iOS and Mac versions of the word-processor and layout tool Pages, the spreadsheet app Numbers and the presentation tool Keynote, accessible through any desktop or notebook version of Safari, Chrome and Internet Explorer,” MacNN reports. “As we found in our reviews, the service is nearly functionally complete, and fully supports syncing and importing documents (including Microsoft Office documents).”

MacNN reports, “Developers, who have had access to the apps since earlier this month, have praised the programs and suggested that Apple may be intending to offer them for free, at least to those who already own a copy of either the OS X or iOS versions. The web apps require a free iCloud account, available for both Mac and PC owners, and use cloud syncing of documents. The free beta, depending on how widespread the offer becomes, could pose a serious threat to Microsoft and its efforts to get Mac and PC owners to switch to its own version of an ‘office in the cloud’ suite, Office 365 (which costs $100 a year…)”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. I tried the Pages iCloud beta this morning. I tried to open a Office doc by dragging it from my desktop to Pages but it wouldn’t open the document totally and ended up with the title of the doc on a second page. I’ll try again.

    1. Imported about a dozen .doc and .docx documents by dragging from finder onto the iCloud Pages “file page”.
      (some with complex formatting and imbedded images which iC/P translated without a problem)
      Don’t know… seems to work perfectly for me.

  2. Ditto. I wonder, does anyone here who has received an invite to the iWork beta here have a paid iCloud account? I do ($20 a year or thereabouts) and I wonder if that’s potentially figuring into their thinking.

            1. I have a “paid” account, got the beta invite late yesterday. If it matters.
              With admittedly limited use (1 day), so far, it works stunningly well. Am constantly amazed it is a browser app.

  3. Weird. My developer account expired 9 months ago but I got an email the other day asking me to test it.

    I have used it and its VERY impressive.

  4. I receives an invite earlier today. Just a regular consumer, though I have iWork on my computer. I briefly tested a numbers spreadsheet. Created in iCloud, closed and opened on my computer right after perfectly, edited and saved including changing the title of the doc, then reopened in iCloud without a hitch. This could be very useful and it is very smooth.

    1. If Numbers can replace my Excel spreadsheets, then I will have no need for two things, A/ Microsoft products, B/ anything more powerful than my iPad.

      I will continue using my MacBook Pro because sometimes a truck is necessary to do initial heavy lifting. But thereafter, a family sedan will suffice.

  5. I’ve been using it and it’s pretty good!

    But i still prefer TextEdit! But, iwork online will be good during the times when i’m stuck using a PC somewhere

  6. “offer nearly mirror-copies of the existing iOS and Mac versions”

    Yeah, not even close unless all you’re doing is VERY simple. Closer to the iOS versions as those are already lacking features (like no bezier editing or color picking) and Keynote is missing a lot of on-slide animation features.

    My BIG hope? That they make Keynote documents embed-able like YouTube vids. 🙂

  7. Questions for those of you trying it out: Is there a feature allowing you to share your document with others? If so, how does that work? I would love to push this at my school district, which is currently using Google Apps.

    1. It appears that you can share documents via iCloud Mail, in either Keynote, Pdf or Powerpoint format.

      So far it doesn’t appear that you can add comments or work on a Keynote project with others though (unless, let’s say, one person receives it, edits it, and saves it as an entirely new document, then sends it back).

  8. I have been testing the three apps since I received the email this morning. Frankly, it is very impressive. With a decent internet connection, you forget very, very quickly that you’re not working with a local desktop app. It is that good. Once I exited out of the test documents, they were immediately available on the desktop and iOS versions of the respective applications.

    That said, there are some shortcomings. I have shared some feedback with Apple on it already. Though the minimal feature set suffices for most basic users, some important features are missing from pages. Inserting page numbers or running heads should be simpler. I use this in the academic community, so we can’t do without such features.

  9. I’m so looking forward to the iCloud iWork feature. I teach at a university that is totally Windows, etc. I have used Macs since 1984. I must take my Macbook Pro to all my classes and connect to the projection system to show my Keynote classroom presentations – my faculty peers regularly ask how I make such nice presentations. As I understand it, I will soon be able to log into my iCloud from a university PC and show my Keynote presentations. How nice will that be?

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