I have been using Microsoft Word for over 15 years now and it is still my preferred software whenever I have to write something serious. In fact, I am pretty sure that I think better, clearer, when I am facing the familiar interface of a Word file.
But over the past couple of years I have also developed an affinity for the iPad and it has become my primary mobile computing device. I no longer take a notepad or even pen for interviews or press conferences and prefer taking notes on the iPad? However, this means a sacrifice of sorts as I have to use the very basic Notes app on this Apple tablet.
Of late, I have discovered an app called SoundNote that records audio as I type. The good thing with this app is that you don’t need to type much, as the app is recording whatever is being said in the background. But the lack of a good writing app has prevented me from trying long format writing on the iPad. Now, you know why I am excited with Microsoft Office coming to Ipad.
The Microsoft Office download is large and can be initiated only over Wi-Fi. Due to the same reason, I suggest you download only the module that you will use. I downloaded MS Word, and kept the other options in the cloud for now. The app is free, but the options are limited if you don’t have an Office 365 account. If you have an Office 365 subscription, like me, you will be able to use this app better.
After the download, the app prompted me to a log in screen. Once I entered my credentials, I was pleasantly surprised to see all of my Skydrive files staring at me.
The interface of Word is not similar to the desktop, but it is still a familiar setting. I already have Office on my iPhone so there were no surprises in store for me. But that app is very limiting and works best when you want to open a Word or Excel file someone has mailed you.
The iPad app, on the other hand, is full function. It lets you do everything you would on a desktop. There are all formatting options, you can insert pictures and tables with links, create page breaks and use all the templates. It also lets you collaborate with other people on a file like