Pages iPad application review

The iPad has been out for awhile now and for me really integrated into my daily use. Today I want to review one of the apps that Apple created that I just love, Pages. I have used apples desktop word processing software pages ever since it came out and have always thought it was an amazing product and so much better than word. For me I never have used word processors like a typewriter. I don’t use them to create text only docs but rich documents with photos, variable fonts, and lots of design elements to make it look great. Word had bugged me for ages, I could never get the photo to be in the exact spot I wanted it to be or easily add a perfect border to an image. And forget wrapping text around an image it just never worked. Maybe it was my word skills that were lacking but regardless it didn’t even matter when Apple launched their iWork set of applications (Pages, Numbers and Keynote). After a minute playing with Pages in the store I knew it would be great and replace Word for me.

When Pages for the iPad was released it really opened my eyes to how powerful the iPad could be with the right software. It really gives you the power of a desktop piece of software with the beauty and simplicity of multi touch and for a great bargain price. As photographers our image is key, everything that I present to my clients I want to have a nice look that matches my brand and includes key images that are part of that brand. In everything from my brochures to my pricing flyer there are tons of images. I think the pricing booklet I have has more photos on it than text, which I believe is key. We are photographers not writers, and although the copy should be good we have to wow our clients with our presentation. Pages gives you many great tools to create slick marketing presentation pieces. They include lots of effects and tools such as drop shadows, image rotation, scaling, smart guides, and auto-wrapping of text around objects. As you insert a photo into the text you can drag it around the screen with your fingers, size it up or down and as you move it the text all auto formats around the image, its pretty magical to watch. You can also add borders to your photos, drop shadows and reflections with just a simple tap and many ways to customize these effects.

I use pages for my newsletter I mail out to clients and industry people (screenshot above). With rounded corners on the photos and different types of shapes you can insert it gives you a very clean and custom look to a newsletter that even though it was created with a template and pretty quickly looks totally custom.

Pages for the iPad gives you lots of the features that the desktop app has like the ability to add in tables, charts, custom shapes although you can’t customize them as much as you can with the desktop pages version. There are a lot of options for this being an iPad app and only $9.99 and you even have 200 levels of undo if you make a mistake. For having the simplicity of the iPad you really do have a lot of control. If you are creating a document from scratch you can choose from one of Apple’s 16 templates, or open an existing document that you’ve created yourself. The 16 templates they provide are pretty simple but you can always start with a custom template from your desktop and import that to your iPad to use as a starting point.

The only negative thing about importing is that with the iPad you only have 40 fonts while on your computer you might have customized it with any font from your computer. When importing custom fonts it will convert them into a font that the iPad has which normally looks nothing like you want it to and you end up settling for something that doesn’t look as perfect as you would want. You also can’t print yet but that will be changing very soon with iOS 4.2 for the iPad.

If you are already using Pages with your Desktop I highly suggest adding the iPad version to your list of tools. It’s a great way to work on your pages docs while on the go and gives you the creative control that some desktop applications still don’t have. I give it a solid 4.5 out of 5 stars!

You can get pages in iTunes here: Pages iPad App

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Author: Mark

Mark is a fine art wedding and portrait photographer from Northern California. He has been passionate about photography since childhood and started his studio 12 years ago to bring a fresh style of photography to the wedding and portrait world.

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  1. Definitely worth investing in a keyboard (I’d recommend bluetooth, with a wireless dock) for those longer documents too.

  2. Yes, this is one app where a bluetooth keyboard is key!

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