iWork may be free with your new iPhone, but these alternatives are way better

iwork office alternatives main

This week, Apple announced that new iPhone and iPad owners will get to download the iWorks office suite – Pages, Numbers, and Keynote – for free. But if you already own an iPad or iPhone, and don’t plan on pre-ordering the next iPhone right now, you’re still going to have to cough up $10 for each of them in the App Store.

Free is always good, but it doesn’t always mean great. Just because these apps come straight from Apple doesn’t mean they’re the best. Off hand, we can name three office suites that are a lot better. Below are some iWork killers and why we like them more than Apple’s product.

QuickOffice, iPhone and iPad (Free)

QuickOffice ProUpdate 9/20: A few days ago Google made two big changes with QuickOffice. the first was to make the iPhone and iPad versions the same instead of splitting them into regular and HD. The company also eliminated the price, making the suite free. 

QuickOffice is a favorite among many mobile users for its clean, intuitive design and how well it handles Microsoft Office document formatting without messing it up – a trick Pages has not yet learned. The app is also able to pull and sync files from several popular services: Google Drive, Box.net, MobileMe, Huddle, and SugarSync. iWork apps only sync to iCloud. The new version should have support for Track Changes and Comments.

QuickOffice’s biggest drawback is that it won’t read, edit, or let you save as RTF, a common file format. It only works with MS Office and text files. 

Documents To Go Premium, iPhone and iPad ($17)

Documents To Go Premium DocsToGo is a venerable office suite that’s been around since the days of the Palm Pilot. The iOS version works on both iPhone and iPad, and offers several features not found in iWorks. The suite can view RTF and PDF files, though it can only create, save, and edit Microsoft Office files. Users can pull files from and sync to Google Drive, Dropbox, Box.net, SugarSync, and iCloud in the newest version. Plus, the app supports syncing files with your computer.

DTG prides itself on keeping formatting intact, so the way a file looks on your iDevice screen should match how it looks on your computer. If your workflow includes more presentations than text documents, Documents To Go isn’t great. It’s not fantastic at creating slides from scratch and isn’t as good as Keynote for editing them, either. Document and spreadsheet editing is far better with this app.

Polaris Office, iPhone and iPad ($13)

Polaris OfficeWe’re rarely impressed with Polaris on Android, but it turns out it’s a capable office suite for iOS. The speedy performance and intuitive interface are big pros as is the ability to view PDF files and edit/save Office files. Currently, the app can pull and sync files from Google Docs, Dropbox, and Box.net with more services on the way. It’s possible to view changes and comments but not to accept, reject, or add new ones. We also don’t like that there’s no RTF support. The price includes word processing, spreadsheets, and presentation and the app works on both iPhone and iPad.

Bonus: Textilus Word Processor, iPad ($6)

Textilus Word ProcessorWe included this word processing app for those of you looking for an app that can both view and edit RTF files. There doesn’t seem to be any other iOS app that can do this, which is odd since RTF is meant to be a universal format and alternative to the proprietary Microsoft Word formats. With Textilus you can open RTF files from email or cloud services for editing and save new files as RTF, RTFD, PDF, TXT, PNG, HTML and Markdown. The app syncs with iCloud, Dropbox, Evernote, and Scrivener. The biggest drawback of Textilus is that it’s only for iPad and not for iPhone.

Are there any mobile office suites you like that we didn’t list? Tell us in the comments.

Computing

Don't use streaming apps? These are the best free players for your local music

Rather than using music streaming apps, you may want something for playing your local music. Good news! There are some good alternatives. These are the best media players you can download for free on Windows.
Computing

Convert your PDFs into convenient Word documents

PDF files are great, but few document types are as malleable as those specific to Microsoft Word. Here's how to convert a PDF file into a Word document, whether you prefer to use Adobe's software suite or a freemium alternative.
Computing

Protecting your PDF with a password isn't difficult. Just follow these steps

If you need to learn how to password protect a PDF, you have come to the right place. This guide will walk you through the process of protecting your documents step-by-step, whether you're running a MacOS or Windows machine.
Computing

These are the 5 best free antivirus apps to protect your MacBook

Malware protection is more important than ever, even if you eschew Windows in favor of Apple's desktop platform. Thankfully, protecting your machine is as easy as picking from the best free antivirus apps for Mac suites.
Mobile

How does fast charging work? Here’s every single standard compared

Modern smartphones can charge in mere minutes instead of hours. How does fast charging work? Here's a guide to the most popular standards, including Qualcomm Quick Charge, Apple fast charging, OnePlus Dash Charge, and more.
Deals

The Best Black Friday Deals from Best Buy in 2018

We've been hard at work assembling all the best Black Friday deals Best Buy offers in 2018 and putting them in one place to save you time and money this holiday season. From laptops to TVs, game consoles to smart speakers and much more…
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 display could be bigger than the iPhone XS Max screen

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 was only released a few months ago, but Samsung is already working on a follow-up. Not much is known about the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 just yet, but we do have a few details.
Mobile

Keep your phone organized with one of the best file managers for Android

Your smartphone has a limited amount of storage space and all sorts of files tend to accumulate if you let them. To keep things in order and find what you need, you should snag one of the best file managers for Android.
Mobile

Upcoming Honor View 20 may forgo the notch for new display technology

Nearly a year after Honor released the spectacular Honor View 10, the Chinese smartphone giant appears to be hard at work on its successor, the Honor View 20. Here's everything we know about the upcoming midrange powerhouse.
Deals

The best Walmart Black Friday deals in 2018

Walmart has historically been the undisputed king of Black Friday deals. The mega-store is known for offering deals on products in almost every category, from smart TVs to children’s toys. We're combing through every deal as it is…
Mobile

The Google Photos iOS app gets a bit better, now has depth control

Google updated the iOS version of the Google Photos app to now take advantage of the depth data that can be captured by the iPhone's camera in Portrait Mode. The new feature is already available in the Android app.
Mobile

T-Mobile-Sprint merger could close as early as first quarter of 2019, exec says

T-Mobile and Sprint are finally merging. After a few failed attempts, the two companies announced their merger at the start of 2018. Once it's complete, the new T-Mobile could be better positioned to take on the likes of Verizon and AT&T.
Mobile

Apple confirms it’s collecting data on foot to improve its Maps app

Apple has been using cars and satellites to improve its Maps app, and it's now confirmed it's also using tech-laden pedestrians to collect data from the streets in a bid to provide better walking directions.
Deals

Black Friday 2018: The best deals so far

Black Friday is the biggest shopping holiday of the year, and it will be here before you know it. If you can't wait until November 23 to start formulating a shopping plan, we've got you covered.