Mobile work: Office for iPad receives mouse and trackpad support

Apple has brought mouse and trackpad support together with a practical cursor to the tablet in iPadOS 13.4 and more and more apps support these input devices. Microsoft says according to reports from The Verge and TechCrunch in autumn 2020, make the mobile versions of the office apps fit for these input methods as well. However, the mouse pointer is not an arrow, but a round marker that is somewhat unusual at first.

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For the iPad Pro, Apple has already introduced two keyboard-trackpad combinations that make it possible to enter data on a tablet like a notebook. The Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro is available in a version for the 11-inch tablet as well as for the 12.9-inch model.

Office for iPad is less powerful than the desktop version

First, Microsoft's all-in-one office app, which combines Word, Excel and Powerpoint in a single app, is to be converted for the iPad. The separate apps for spreadsheets, word processing and presentations that are still available should also get mouse support according to the report. Many professional functions are missing from Microsoft's tablet applications, however: VBA macros are not supported, for example, and pivot tables can be used in existing Excel tables, but not created from scratch.

Apple's office software iWork supports new input options

Apple's own office software iWork with the individual applications Pages, Keynote and Numbers has already been updated with the new input methods. It shows that the mouse control when working with tables or the layout of more complex text documents is significantly more precise than the previous input method with the finger. Together with the pen input using Apple Pencil for marking text passages and for drawing, in's experience, this combination in some cases even suggests use on desktops and notebooks.

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