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Pages for iPad

Pages for iPad

Most portable devices offer file readers that allow you simply to view PDF for Microsoft Word documents without the ability to modify them. Other devices offer a text editor, which allows users to create text from scratch, but with little or no formatting and page layout functionality.

Pages for iPad is a fully functional word processor with page layout and design capabilities, just like its Mac counterpart. Pages for iPad is able to create Pages for Mac compatible documents from scratch, but also allows you to save a document in Microsoft Word format so it can be transferred and later opened with Microsoft Word on a PC or Mac computer.

This iPad edition of Pages has a built-in spell checker, plus offers the same formatting capabilities you’d expect from any word processor. You can utilize multiple fonts and different size typestyles, set line spacing, modify paragraph formatting, adjust margins and columns, import photos and clip art into documents, as well as add page headers and footers. The iOS operating system allows you to cut, copy, and past text and graphics when using any iPad app, including Pages.

You can also utilize any of 16 professionally designed templates for easily creating specific types of documents (as shown in Figure 2). For example, when using a template, you can compose formal business letters (and replicate your company’s letterhead) or create resumes, project proposals, reports, brochures, party invitations, newsletters, and a wide range of other document types. Of course, you can also simply start with a blank document and do custom formatting as you write.

Figure 2 All of the iWork apps for iPad offer templates to get you started.

When word processing on the iPad using Pages, you can position your iPad horizontally or vertically, and choose whether or not you want to display on-screen menu options and formatting command icons at the top of the screen, while also displaying the virtual keyboard at the bottom. Eliminating the top formatting and menu command icons provides more on-screen real estate for displaying the actual document you’re creating.

When working with multi-page documents, you can use a simple slide motion with your finger to scroll up or down. When you do this, a special magnifying glass appears on the screen, giving you a thumbnail preview of each page as you’re quickly scrolling.

Adding graphics and photos to a primarily text-based document is also extremely simple, as is positioning, rotating, and resizing those graphic elements (as shown in Figure 3). Based on your formatting options, Pages will automatically adjust the spacing of your text around the graphics, plus allow you to add frames, drop shadows, or other special effects to the photos you import.

Figure 3 Adding photos to your documents is easy.

When word processing on a laptop or desktop computer, you’d typically use the mouse or the keyboard’s arrow keys to navigate your way around the document and program. Pages for iPad offers the same ability to navigate, but instead of a mouse, you’ll utilize finger movements on the touch screen.

Perhaps the biggest benefit to using Pages on the iPad is its ability it do word processing almost anywhere, without having to carry around a cumbersome laptop computer (as shown in Figure 4). Whether you need to create documents from scratch while on the go, or you simply want to review and edit documents created on another computer, Pages for iPad offers the features and functionality you’ll need to be a highly productive wordsmith from wherever you happen to be.

Figure 4 Word processing from your iPad allows you to write on the go.

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