Last Friday marked the day that Apple began inviting non-developers and the public via email to test the iWork for iCloud beta. The iWork for iCloud beta includes a cloud based version of several Apple features. These include Pages, Numbers and Keynotes. The beta version also includes the suites original functionalities and caveats.
If you are part of the lucky chosen few to test the iWork user experience, here is a rundown on what to expect:
First, lets get to know what iWork is all about. iWork is an Apple product suite that works for all Apple devices, across the desktop, iPad and iPhone. Basically iWork is an equivalent of Microsoft Office suite, Google Docs or the Open Office suite. Apple has continued to go with its traditions of availing all its software’s on its Mac App Store for the Desktop version which will cost you $ 19.99 which is similar to €13 per application. What this means is that, after the payment the application will allow users to create, edit documents with the Pages app, spreadsheets with the Numbers app and presentations with the Keynote app which are all available in the suite. Essentially iWork will tidy up the Apple productivity suite. With the recent Microsoft Surface RT price cut, a device billed around productivity and work, this is a timely announcement by Apple.
In case you are wondering what iWork for iCloud beta means, let’s get the facts straight. iCloud is the Apple cloud storage system; the latest trend with online storage allowing you to save and access all your documents from any computer or connected device. What Apple has achieved here is to add the suites core features and functionalities to the web or rather to its iCloud. This essentially allows Apples’ customers to access their Keynote via Keynote for iCloud web app, Numbers via Numbers for iCloud web app, and Pages via Pages got iCloud web app through Chrome, Internet Explorer or Apples Safari browser. All of your documents sync with iOS and OS X versions of iWork which are then saved to Apples’ cloud storage system; the iCloud. The saved documents are always available at iCloud.com and as such this becomes something of a rival to Dropbox and other collaborative storage solutions.
The public beta aspect here means that Apples is still fine tuning and testing the suites applications. More refined versions will still be released according to analysis from the user experience. When the testing is done, the final version will then be released for all consumers this autumn.
If you want to access the beta version, you must have the invitation first. If you have it, all that remains is for you to sign in to iCloud’s website with your iCloud Apple Login ID. Click on the app you want to test and get started!