After a long lull with no new developments for its iWork suite, Apple has released updated versions of its mobile office and productivity apps: Pages, Numbers and Keynote. These apps, comprising the iWork suite, have all received significant under-the-hood improvements to help you work more efficiently.
The updated iWork apps let you multitask with Slide Over, Split View (available on the iPad Pro, Air 2, and Mini 4) and Picture in Picture on the iPad, if you need to enter text in a document or crunch numbers in a spreadsheet while doing research on the Web. On the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, the updated apps now work with pressure-sensitive 3D Touch controls.
If you're using iWork on a Mac, try the improved word processing, better design tools, sharing functions, upgraded usability and performance features and greater accessibility.
Aside from shedding the "Beta" label, iCloud.com's iWork suite also acquired improved sharing, collaboration and editing features. In Pages, for instance, you can now preview shared documents on both iOS and Android devices.
You now have greater control over what others can do with your shared document. The "View only" setting, for example, prevents collaborators from making changes to your document. You can view the list of collaborators (up to 100) while working on a document and quickly find where someone is making changes to the document by clicking on their name in the list. More editing features have been added, including wider language support, comments, word count, pages and sections, reverting to previous versions, chart and table features and more.
If you are familiar with Google Docs and Sheets, you will find that the iWork changes seem to be catching up with Google Docs and Sheets features — welcome improvements.
VoiceOver, the accessibility feature for the visually impaired, also received several important upgrades to its iOS 9, OS X and iCloud.com versions. Improvements in VoiceOver for iOS 9 let you read text formatting information (such as font name and size), add comments and tracking changes, manage table cells, edit charts, read presenter notes and more.
Compatibility with Microsoft Office documents and with previous iWork versions has been improved in the updated versions of the iWork apps.
To get all of these new features, look for app versions 2.6 on iOS 9 and 5.6 on OS X 10.11 El Capitan.
To see what else is new in Pages, Number and Keynote, see the full change log on Apple's website.
[Image credit: Apple]