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Pages for Mac: Handy document creator

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Pages has been included in macOS since 2005 when it was first made available as part of the iWork suite. Apple markets Pages as an easy-to-use document creator that allows you to collaborate with others to create documents and get things done. With the recent release of version 7, Pages has a lot going for it right now – it's worth taking a deeper look at what this app has to offer. Let's consider how best to use Pages and some of the features you might not know about, as well as some comparable apps you should also consider.

How do I install Pages on my Mac?

Pages can be downloaded by going here and clicking the download button. Since Pages is included with macOS, there isn’t a charge for it and you probably won’t even need to download it if you’re using a newer Mac as it comes installed. If not, no worries you can get it from the link above.

How do I create a document in Pages?

Creating a new document in Pages is easy. To get started, simply launch pages from your applications folder or by searching for it with Spotlight. If you’ve previously launched Pages, you’ll see the screen below, and all you’ll need to do is select “New Document”. But if it’s your first time launching Pages, you’ll be guided through a quick intro before arriving at the “Choose a Template” screen.

Pages has a plethora of awesome templates to choose from. These make it much easier to hit the ground typing and get started with the project that you want to create. Want to create a resumé, book, newsletter, or certificate? Easy – there’s a template for that. Let’s pick the “Serif Newsletter” template from within “newsletters” and look deeper into what we can do with Pages.

How to navigate within Pages

Using Pages is a breeze and doesn't take much learning at all! At the top of your chosen template window, you’ll see the toolset. This includes options such as Insert, Tables, Charts, Text, Shapes, Media, and Comments. If you select an element from within your working document, the “Format” tab gives you editing choices relevant to the element you’ve selected. Easy as that!

Pages Tips and Tricks

I won’t bore you with information on how to write a basic text document – you probably already know how to do that. But let’s take a look at some tips and tricks that you might not have known were in Pages.

Gaining access to all of your Thumbnails in Pages

Being able to see all of your working thumbnails within Pages makes it easier to navigate the project that you’re working on. Simply press the keys ⌘⌥P (command-option-P) to have the “Thumbnails” pane show up on the left-hand side of your window.

Showing the word count

To track how many words you have already typed in Pages, just press the keys ⇧⌘W (command-option-W) and you’ll see the word count at the top of the app window.

Collaborating with others on a document

Pages now allows you to work with others within the same document! To do this, click on the “Collaborate” button in the upper right-hand corner of the app window and choose how you want to invite someone to work on your document with you.

How to share a document with others

To share a document with another person, select “Share” from the top nav bar – this opens up a drop-down menu. From there, you can select “Send a Copy” and choose a method for how you want to send it to someone else.

How do I save a document in Pages so that people who are not using Pages can access it?

After you’ve created a document, you need to save it. If you want to save it in the Pages format, we can press the keys ⌘S (command-S) and save it onto your Mac.

But one of the issues that you might run into while using Pages is that your friends, colleagues and family members using Word or another similar service might not be able to open your document. There’s an easy fix for that though! When you’re done creating your document and are ready to send it to someone else, just go to the File menu, choose Export To, and then Word. And that’s it! Now everyone can open and edit the document.

What's the difference between Pages and other similar apps?

Microsoft Word has been around since 1983 and to most, it’s still the best document creator out there. However, with with the recent addition of a subscription pricing model and the fact that most people don’t need all of the advanced features Word offers, Pages looks like an appealing alternative – it’s a great word processor, and has all of the features that you’ll need for everyday tasks.

Google Docs is quickly becoming one of the “go-to” solutions for people who want to create and share or collaborate on documents. Since you probably already use Google and likely already have a Gmail account, you already have access to Google docs, no additional software needed. Another benefit of Google Docs is that all your documents are kept in one centralized location on the cloud.


Pages just keeps getting better and better. With the addition of collaboration features and improved compatibility with Microsoft Word combined with its clean, easy-to-use interface, it’s definitely worth your time to check Pages out and see if it’s right for you.

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