Word Processing with your iPadBy
If there’s one task most business owners need their computing devices to perform, it’s word processing. After all, you can send emails from your phone, but I definitely wouldn’t want to compose a 500-word monthly report or blog post on that tiny screen.
Thankfully, there are several options so you can use your iPad as a word processing dynamo. Here are my favorite selections:
- Notes. (Included on your iPad by default.) Notes is an app that provides you the ability to jot down thoughts, lists, ideas, and more using the iPad’s built-in touch-screen keypad. While not particularly robust (compare it to taking notes on a yellow legal pad, which is exactly what the screen looks like!) it is a quick and dirty way to capture written notes without a lot of extra bells and whistles. It’s an easy-to-use, intuitive interface and is perfect to use when you just need to jot down a note and can’t find pen or paper.
- Pages. ($9.99) At the other end of the spectrum is the Pages app, available for download from the App Store for less than $10. Want to create brochures, resumes, reports, and other graphic-intensive text documents? Pages is your answer! Most run-of-the-mill business owners may find it offers more than they need, but if you do a lot of template-based documents, it may be just what you’re looking for. Got Microsoft Word documents that you’d like to edit on the fly? You can import them into this program. Amazingly, this program not only allows you to import, but it will export your finished document in Microsoft Word or even in a PDF format. Wow. This app is so powerful it may even entice you to buy the Apple keyboard for iPad and make your iPad your main word processing tool.
- CleanWriter. ($0.99) CleanWriter is just what the name says; a clean and simple approach to creating text documents. With just a few options (three font choices, two black-and-white color themes), CleanWriter will let you create bare-bones documents quickly and easily, and save them as .txt files. You can upload and download the .txt files when synching your iPad via iTunes, and email portions of your documents as well. Their claim to fame is that their tool is so simple, minimalistic, and clutter-free that it allows you to focus on writing. The app page says “All features are hidden from sight, leaving you alone with your words.” Classic.
- Documents. ($0.99) If you want a middle-of-the-road solution, Documents may be what your heart desires. Advertised as a “full office and documents management suite,” Documents allows you to create, edit, and manage spreadsheets and text files. One killer point: You can sync files to your Google Docs account which is very cool. Once saved, files can be opened by MS Word and Excel, Open Office, and all major office suites. So, if you need spreadsheet capability and total integration with Microsoft Office or Open Office, this one might be the one that works best for you.
Because the price points on these applications are so low, we suggest you try a few to see which best fits your needs and which interface fits your working style. If none of these does it for you, keep checking the App Store as new programs are being developed all the time.