Mouse and trackpad support is coming to Microsoft's Office suite for iPad later this year

Shawn Knight

Posts: 13,527   +132
Staff member

Now we’re hearing that Microsoft is planning to add cursor support to its Office line of iPad apps by the fall which would make Apple’s tablet far more desirable for those that spend a lot of time with Redmond's productivity suite. Ideally, Microsoft probably would have preferred to have been given a heads-up about the new feature ahead of time so it could have support ready the moment it arrived in iPadOS, but alas.

Apple originally positioned the iPad as an entirely new product that specifically wasn’t a laptop. But over time, and as companies like Microsoft introduced the business-minded Surface, Apple started to dip its toes in the productivity pond with keyboard covers and the Apple Pencil. Now with trackpad and mouse support, the iPad is as close to a laptop replacement as it has ever been.

Apple’s latest iPad Pro starts at $799 for the 11-inch model and $999 for the 12.9-inch variant although notably, cursor support works on all recent iPads loaded with the latest OS update. Apple’s Magic Keyboard with trackpad, meanwhile, will run you $299.

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Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,721   +1,324
Didn't know miniature ponies could be work horses.

These things outwork the work horses! Trust me, try editing a 4K video on a quad core ultra book when it’s not plugged in. Then do the same on one of these, it runs rings round the windows machines!
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,721   +1,324
If Apple would just put a real desktop-class OS on it, they could upgrade from Shetland to Clydesdale.

It’s not far off. The last two years have seen huge improvements. I’m at the point where I can ditch my ultrabook for an iPad. In fact as soon as I can start travelling again I will be. On the road the iPad is better than a laptop, has better battery, performs the same when plugged in as when not, is a lot faster at video editing. Generally has a better screen (laptop model depending). Easier to use in bed, actually easier to use in general. Smaller, doesn’t require AC power adaptors. And if you have an iPhone, photos you take on the iPhone appear on your iPad without you needing to do anything.

I couldn’t replace my work laptop though, not yet. If it could remote onto my jump box it could though. Pretty certain most ms services work on iPads now.
 

Fearghast

Posts: 446   +348
These things outwork the work horses! Trust me, try editing a 4K video on a quad core ultra book when it’s not plugged in. Then do the same on one of these, it runs rings round the windows machines!
You mean with latest update that fixed that 50% rendering speed issue :D ... Just image it ... 50% slower for 1/2 year THX to iOS issue ... gives you an idea what Apple priorities are and what iPad Pro users do with their machines.
That iPad "workhorse" is around 5% faster when it comes to video editing compared to a phone with Snapdragon 865.
But when you compare mobile OS editing software to a laptop one, it seriously depent on said software and how well it can stress hardware to its limits.
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,721   +1,324
You mean with latest update that fixed that 50% rendering speed issue :D ... Just image it ... 50% slower for 1/2 year THX to iOS issue ... gives you an idea what Apple priorities are and what iPad Pro users do with their machines.
That iPad "workhorse" is around 5% faster when it comes to video editing compared to a phone with Snapdragon 865.
But when you compare mobile OS editing software to a laptop one, it seriously depent on said software and how well it can stress hardware to its limits.
Actually it’s a lot more than 5% faster than a snapdragon 865. If you look at comparison videos between iOS devices and android devices running video editing benchmarks you will see that the iOS devices are slaughtering Android. This is both silicon and software optimisation but the moment, nothing can touch Apples silicon.

And yes software is a problem. But it’s improving rapidly. But then to be honest with you, for
me the only good video editing software on Windows is premiere pro and it’s awfully expensive. The iPad software is far cheaper and faster. No idea what’s available on an Android device though.

But tbh, android tablets are dead. iPads have really good software support. So it’s a moot comparison. I’m not going to replace an iPad with a phone. I already have a phone.
 

Fearghast

Posts: 446   +348
Actually it’s a lot more than 5% faster than a snapdragon 865. If you look at comparison videos between iOS devices and android devices running video editing benchmarks you will see that the iOS devices are slaughtering Android. This is both silicon and software optimisation but the moment, nothing can touch Apples silicon.

And yes software is a problem. But it’s improving rapidly. But then to be honest with you, for
me the only good video editing software on Windows is premiere pro and it’s awfully expensive. The iPad software is far cheaper and faster. No idea what’s available on an Android device though.

But tbh, android tablets are dead. iPads have really good software support. So it’s a moot comparison. I’m not going to replace an iPad with a phone. I already have a phone.
Take a look at some video made by somegadgetguy on YouTube, slaughting not included :D
Nobody is recommending an Android tablet, don't be crazy ;) it's just hills on the iOS site are certainly not that green as you make it out to be.
I own iPad Pro since the first one, I even pre-ordered it, software improvements were anything but rapid. It's more like Apple playing catch-up to DeX one step at the time, it's getting close yet we are still far away to a desktop like experience.

And we all know it's not the only good editing software tool...
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,721   +1,324
Take a look at some video made by somegadgetguy on YouTube, slaughting not included :D
Nobody is recommending an Android tablet, don't be crazy ;) it's just hills on the iOS site are certainly not that green as you make it out to be.
I own iPad Pro since the first one, I even pre-ordered it, software improvements were anything but rapid. It's more like Apple playing catch-up to DeX one step at the time, it's getting close yet we are still far away to a desktop like experience.

And we all know it's not the only good editing software tool...
Right. I’m sure someone has jacked up some snapdragon 865 to perform better than normal. In pretty much every phone review from the major reviewers Apples chips humiliate the Qualcomm parts including the 865. But as you said, no one is trying to sell an Android tablet. So I’m not really sure why you mentioned it. Android SOC’s are completely irrelevant to Anyone who wants to buy a tablet computer as Android got defeated so badly in the industry that they’re almost gone completely. I thin it’s a shame but oh well.

Whether it can replaced a laptop depends on the user. For me it’s very good, it’s more than just a laptop replacement but an improvement. I don’t want it to be a desktop experience, for most of its life it won’t be used on a desktop.

And if you are expecting a iPad to give you this then you will be waiting a while. Apple sells other products to fill those needs.

There are lots of people out there who are using laptops for all sorts of things that isn’t at a desk or in the life of someone who uses desks. These are the people an iPad is for.

As for DEX. Well, dex might be closer to a computer experience but the iPad experience is way more preferable to most personal users in general. As I said, if you’re waiting for your iPad to turn into something that resembles this then you’ve got the wrong end of the stick.
 

Fearghast

Posts: 446   +348
Right. I’m sure someone has jacked up some snapdragon 865 to perform better than normal. In pretty much every phone review from the major reviewers Apples chips humiliate the Qualcomm parts including the 865. But as you said, no one is trying to sell an Android tablet. So I’m not really sure why you mentioned it. Android SOC’s are completely irrelevant to Anyone who wants to buy a tablet computer as Android got defeated so badly in the industry that they’re almost gone completely. I thin it’s a shame but oh well.

Whether it can replaced a laptop depends on the user. For me it’s very good, it’s more than just a laptop replacement but an improvement. I don’t want it to be a desktop experience, for most of its life it won’t be used on a desktop.

And if you are expecting a iPad to give you this then you will be waiting a while. Apple sells other products to fill those needs.

There are lots of people out there who are using laptops for all sorts of things that isn’t at a desk or in the life of someone who uses desks. These are the people an iPad is for.

As for DEX. Well, dex might be closer to a computer experience but the iPad experience is way more preferable to most personal users in general. As I said, if you’re waiting for your iPad to turn into something that resembles this then you’ve got the wrong end of the stick.
No.
You are still only taking the "Antutu" road. I personally prefer real power that user can actually use, I don't care for Antutu, how quickly my tablet lauch Twitter etc. Nobody is OCing SOC or any other shananigans. Snapdragon is simply not that bad and Apple SOC is not that good as PR slides suggest.

Android tablets are pretty much kings when it comes to the market that matters to 99,9% of users and that is media consumption - not using 4:3, iPad Pro is the only one with stereo speakers, they do not even support YouTube 1080p+ etc.
For specific workflows they are destroyed by iPads - Procreate, Garageband, limited yet useful Photoshop etc. I love it wheny iPad Pro is useful.

DeX is better simply because it offers real multitasking and magical thing - resolution scaling to external display. It's sad I even have to mention it, but this basic function is nowhere to be seen on iPads.

X being better than Y does not make X automaticky good, it's just simply not as bad.

Every SOC or platform can be viable, only your lack of triyng is holding you back.

If your iPad Pro is giving you everything you need, I feel really happy for you, but for my workflow it's simply not good enough. I like to be efficient, quick that's not what I get from iOS... p
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,721   +1,324
No.
You are still only taking the "Antutu" road. I personally prefer real power that user can actually use, I don't care for Antutu, how quickly my tablet lauch Twitter etc. Nobody is OCing SOC or any other shananigans. Snapdragon is simply not that bad and Apple SOC is not that good as PR slides suggest.

Android tablets are pretty much kings when it comes to the market that matters to 99,9% of users and that is media consumption - not using 4:3, iPad Pro is the only one with stereo speakers, they do not even support YouTube 1080p+ etc.
For specific workflows they are destroyed by iPads - Procreate, Garageband, limited yet useful Photoshop etc. I love it wheny iPad Pro is useful.

DeX is better simply because it offers real multitasking and magical thing - resolution scaling to external display. It's sad I even have to mention it, but this basic function is nowhere to be seen on iPads.

X being better than Y does not make X automaticky good, it's just simply not as bad.

Every SOC or platform can be viable, only your lack of triyng is holding you back.

If your iPad Pro is giving you everything you need, I feel really happy for you, but for my workflow it's simply not good enough. I like to be efficient, quick that's not what I get from iOS... p
We will have to agree to disagree. The evidence is quite clear. An iPhone editing a 4K video in half the time it took the s20 ultra. And then the iPad editing 4K video in half the time of the iPhone. Benchmarks don’t mean that much but real world use does. The 865 coming close to any Apple chip on a benchmark is pointless if in the real world it performs nothing like that. Snapdragon isn’t that bad but Apples chips are a lot better. Even outlets like Android Authority have been talking about this

Personally I think DEX is a atrocious and I wouldn’t inflict it on anyone but it’s up to you. It’s definitely not comparable an iPad. One is a tablet computer that can do something things you did on a laptop. The other is a desktop mockup for your phone that can do hardly anything due to lack of support. I can’t think of a good use case scenario for DEX at all. I would say a cheap windows laptop is Way better than a DEX and has all the features you mention and has the keyboard and screen you need to carry it around. Dex cant edit video decently - there is no software either.

Also, actually you are incorrect. Android is not viable currently. The only products available are the Samsung ones and they are more expensive and way slower than an iPad. They also have non existent software support. DEX is also not viable as I do not have time to take an external display.

Just out of curiosity, what solution is viable in place of an iPad? And don’t say Dex because it’s not. Laptops are worse and more cumbersome. And Android tablets are garbage. Not to mention they run Android, which no matter how low my IQ gets, I will always do my best to avoid.
 

Fearghast

Posts: 446   +348
We will have to agree to disagree. The evidence is quite clear. An iPhone editing a 4K video in half the time it took the s20 ultra. And then the iPad editing 4K video in half the time of the iPhone. Benchmarks don’t mean that much but real world use does. The 865 coming close to any Apple chip on a benchmark is pointless if in the real world it performs nothing like that. Snapdragon isn’t that bad but Apples chips are a lot better. Even outlets like Android Authority have been talking about this

Personally I think DEX is a atrocious and I wouldn’t inflict it on anyone but it’s up to you. It’s definitely not comparable an iPad. One is a tablet computer that can do something things you did on a laptop. The other is a desktop mockup for your phone that can do hardly anything due to lack of support. I can’t think of a good use case scenario for DEX at all. I would say a cheap windows laptop is Way better than a DEX and has all the features you mention and has the keyboard and screen you need to carry it around. Dex cant edit video decently - there is no software either.

Also, actually you are incorrect. Android is not viable currently. The only products available are the Samsung ones and they are more expensive and way slower than an iPad. They also have non existent software support. DEX is also not viable as I do not have time to take an external display.

Just out of curiosity, what solution is viable in place of an iPad? And don’t say Dex because it’s not. Laptops are worse and more cumbersome. And Android tablets are garbage. Not to mention they run Android, which no matter how low my IQ gets, I will always do my best to avoid.
Laptop is a solution. Ergonomy, ease of use, power, multitasking and OS wise.
iPad Pro with keyboard or a stand is anything but comfortable.
I have no idea why are you avoiding proper rendering tests where Apple SOC is almost on par with Snapdragon (I know it's hard to find a proper, profesional site). I hope it's not "fanboy blindness".
 

Fearghast

Posts: 446   +348
It's really hard to see your way as viable or efficient.
Cost wise - A) You have a PC that can do pretty much everything and it's power beast with best price to power ratio, but you need display, keyboard and mouse.
B) You have a laptop that is lower power, but all you need extra is a mouse to speed things up and be more precise.
C) You have an iPad Pro - you need keyboard, you need mouse, you need dock and you even need a dedicated soundcard.

Chris (techtablets) demonstrated Exynos being as fast as iPad Pro when it comes to video editing, Juan Carlos (somegadgetguy) has his rendering test with Snapdragon.

You know that is worst? I am no fanboy to any brand :D I know it makes one hard to agrue with.
I know you would love to argue iOS vs Android or Apple vs Snapdragon, but that is certainly not my point of interest here. I just like to demostrate iPad Pro not being anything unique or especialy efficient.