Back in late 2007 I wrote an article comparing Excel functions with Apple’s Numbers ’08 - Apple’s then new spreadsheet application that was part of iWork ’08. In 2009 I wrote a similar article for the then released Numbers ’09.
It has been a long time, but this week Apple released Number 3.0 (they’ve dropped the year naming convention – smart move given how long it took to update between ’09 and ’13). For completeness I thought I should do the same comparison again, to see how Numbers now stacks up.
And here is a summary table:
Apple added 5 functions – the first 2 were already in Excel, the other 3 are new to Numbers and Excel.
Apple also added some new features to Numbers, and took away a lot of other features (table categories!). It is of course available on iPhones and iPads too – and even on Windows through iCloud.
As I’ve said before, the number of functions missing is misleading. Apple has covered most of the functions that people use in Excel. The ones that are missing tend to be obscure – for example, complex number calculations and database functions. And they’ve added a few that Excel doesn’t have – how useful the new ones are depends on what you do in spreadsheets I guess.
I really like Numbers. Spreadsheets look better, and they are easier to setup and use. I actually enjoy using Numbers – I dread using Excel.
Hopefully Apple continue to improve on it and we don’t have to wait another 4 years to get any real updates to the software. And they put Categories and Applescript back soon…