Microsoft Office: Use it on your iPad or iPhone for free
It is possible to obtain Microsoft Office applications: Word, Excel and PowerPoint on an iPad, or even on an iPhone
When Microsoft first revealed its Office applications compatible with Mac and iOS devices, they were quite limited.
The iPad version offered Microsoft 365 subscribers some basic editing features while on the iPhone, the only option available was read-only.
Things have changed since then. Most iOS or iPadOS users can now edit their Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents through their Apple smartphone and tablet without having to register for Office 365.
In this article we show you how to download free Microsoft Office applications, install and use them on your iPad or iPhone.
Download Microsoft Office for an iPad and iPhone
Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook applications can be downloaded for free to your iPad through the App Store, provided your iPad is running iOS 12 or later.
Please note that you do not need to subscribe to Microsoft 365 to create, edit or print your documents.
However, you need a Microsoft user name, for this you will have to create an account by entering an email address and a password.
Download Microsoft Office on an iPad Pro
Although Office Pack applications are available for free for iPads under 10.1 inches, it is not so obvious for the iPad Pro and the 10.2-inch iPad (2019).
These models are excluded from this offer as they are considered professional devices. Therefore, to take advantage of this offer, you will have no other option but to subscribe to Microsoft 365.
As a reminder, if you use Word, Excel and Powerpoint for professional or commercial purposes, then you must legally be a subscriber to Microsoft Office, regardless of the device used.
Subscribe to Microsoft 365
With Microsoft 365, you benefit from premium versions of Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook), including advanced change tracking and tools for formatting graphs, tables and images.
Plus, you can enjoy 1TB of online storage through OneDrive, compared to 5GB without a subscription. Plus, depending on your subscription, applications may or may not support macOS.
You also get 60 minutes of free Skype calls every month and OneDrive storage for 5 users.
The price of an annual package at Microsoft 365 starts at 69 euros with the Personal package.
Word, Excel and PowerPoint utility on the iPad
Apple offers its own alternative, allowing you to create and save files, spreadsheets and presentations, which are then compatible with Microsoft Office applications.
Apple's office suite, called iWork, consists of :
- Text processing pages
- Numbers for spreadsheets, charts and tables
- The opening speech to make your presentations
Please note that iWork is provided when you buy an iPad or iPhone.
In conclusion, unless you are required to work on the Office Pack, you will not have the use of it since iWork performs similar functions.
Microsoft Office synchronization options
OneDrive, the Microsoft cloud, is automatically integrated into the Office for iOS package.
In this way, all documents created in one of the Office applications will be accessible from the iPad, and in the same format, which is not the case on the iPhone?
Please note that in order to work with your files, make sure you have saved and downloaded them to your tablet.
If you are offline, then feel free to create new documents and save them, without having to go through Drive.
Word, Excel and PowerPoint applications on the iPad and iPhone
With Word in iOS, you have creation and editing tools with which you can make changes to your copies, with or without an Office 365 subscription.
On the iPhone, Word suffers from the limitations imposed by the size of its screen. Fortunately, Microsoft has made some improvements in the interface to facilitate its assimilation.
In particular, there is the "Quick Access" option, which is used to resize text, remove unnecessary items and attach all the tools to the keyboard.
To access files stored in OneDrive or Dropbox accounts, or in your own private Microsoft SharePoint account, you must have a paid account.
With a free OneDrive account, you can only store and access your documents.
With Excel in iOS, you can take advantage of all the features available in Office 365 payment packages. Create, edit, save and print - everything is possible with the free version.
There is also support for DropBox. Once connected to your account, you will have access to a list of folders where you can save and open your spreadsheets.
Features reserved for Office 365 users include :
- Customization of styles, colors and dynamic designs.
- XLOOKUP to search articles.
- The addition or modification of graphic elements.
Like Word and Excel, PowerPoint does not require an iOS subscription.
You can add or enhance animations, videos, and crop images from your iOS devices.
Like other applications, Dropbox file storage is an alternative to Microsoft's OneDrive.
If you have an Office 365 subscription, then say hello to great features like :
- Playback mode.
- Adding custom colors and shapes.
- Inserting SmartArt graphics.
- The shading of cells, rows and columns in tables.
Although not comparable to its desktop version, it is still a solid tool on the mobile.