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By Jess Stratton | Friday, August 01, 2014

Microsoft Office for iPad: New Features!

Microsoft has just released the first major update for its Office for iPad suite of apps, including PowerPoint, Word, and Excel for iOS. Every update has been made in response to vocal user feedback in the first iterations of using the Office suite on a tablet, and we see some nice new features including gestures, print options, and presentation tools.

Excel

Now you can quickly select an entire row or column by flicking a cell’s selection handle in the direction you want to select.

There’s new support for using an external keyboard to input data and move around between cells.

You can now interact with PivotTables that pull their source data from the same workbook.

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And print options have improved, giving users a wider range of options for printing Excel workbooks.

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Word

The major update for Word brings a new feature that rolls to all three apps: the ability to crop a photo directly in Word.

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PowerPoint

Of all three apps, PowerPoint’s changes are the most eagerly anticipated. The biggest update is the ability to finally use Presentation Mode while presenting, so the user can see speaker notes, view the next slide, jump to any slide, and remove annotations during a presentation.

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Now PowerPoint users can also play sounds, video, and other music in the background during a presentation.

While PowerPoint for iPad always supported video in a presentation that was created elsewhere, you could not insert a video from an iOS Camera Roll. The new update lets you do this, as well as insert hyperlinks directly into a presentation.

All of these updates go a long way to bringing the user experience of the Office apps on a tablet a little closer to that of their desktop counterparts.

Some more updates that go across all three apps are the ability to export and email documents as PDFs, and support for third-party fonts if you have a font app installed on your iPad.

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The subscription offers have not changed. It’s still free to use Office for iPad to read existing documents, but creating and editing documents requires a subscription to Office 365.

To learn more, watch Office Online Essential Training and Office for iPad First Look on lynda.com.

 

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