The Apple technology platform allows you to be location independent. Being location independent means that you can work on your files wherever you are. Regular readers of my blog know that I have an iPad, an iPhone, a MacBook Pro and a PC. Using Pages and iCloud, I can write when and where I want and the results are available on all my iDevices.
Apple’s iWork suite of apps includes Pages (its word processor), Numbers (its spreadsheet) and Keynote (its presentation program). You can buy the apps in the iTunes store for $9.99 each for mobile devices and $19.99 for the Mac. I am using Pages to write this article.
The key to sharing your documents across your Apple devices is iCloud. All of your devices must be signed into the same iCloud account and ‘documents and data’ has to be turned on in your iCloud settings. Be sure that you also have the option ‘use cellular data’ turned on so if you’re not in a Wi-Fi zone, your documents still stay in sync in iCloud.
When you open Pages and start a new document, you’re offered a host of templates as a starting point. Most of the time, I start with a blank page and just start typing. Whatever you write is saved instantly and available on any of your devices for ongoing editing. I often start my documents on my desktop or my iPad and do subsequent editing when I can steal a few moments on my iPhone. I love using my iPhone and iPad to edit because I can use Siri to talk and it types what I say! I also have a Bluetooth keyboard for my iPad so I can use that when I am sitting in a stable place.
You can email your document from within the Pages app in Pages, Word or PDF format. I have created a letterhead document that I duplicate and edit when I need to send a letter to a client; the PDF format works great for that.
Apple recently made a very cool change to its iCloud platform – they allowed editing and creating iWork documents directly in a browser. It’s labeled as ‘beta’ on the site but it works great and I hope they keep it. Here’s how to do it: on your PC or Mac, open Chrome (my browser of choice) and go to http://icloud.com. Sign in with your iTunes username and password and you’ll be presented with the full set of iCloud apps. When you open Pages by clicking the icon, you’ll see all your documents, just like you do on your iPad and iPhone! You can add to and edit your document and all changes are available instantly on all your other iCloud-connected devices.
I use this browser-based editing feature on both my PC and MacBook Pro. That lets me use Pages on either computer whether it has the Pages app or not.
My friend is writing a screenplay and I recently showed him how he can work on it wherever he is. He can write at home and, when he has a few minutes between meetings, on his iPad Mini. It’s convenient and easy and increases his productivity level…and it’s free!
So check out Pages on your computer browser and grab Pages from the iTunes Store, if you don’t already have it. I find it to be a great way to write.