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4/6/2010
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iPad Cripples iWork Documents

Users discover Apple's new tablet-style computer includes only a stripped down version of the company's office software.




iPad teardown shot, via the FCC.
(Click for larger image and for all 17 iPad teardown photos. )

Numerous consumers who purchased an iPad over the weekend are complaining that Apple's slick new tablet mangles iWork files, including Pages documents and Keynote presentations, imported from their Macs.

"The part that comes as a huge and surprising disappointment to me is that my Keynote and Pages documents are altered when they are converted to the iPad version," said college professor Niels Meersscha, in a post on Apple's support forum.

"Grouped objects are ungrouped (this for me is a big issue given my complex presentations), endnotes and footnotes are not imported in Pages, Table of Content changes to regular text, some fonts cannot be used on the iPad, etc," Meersscha added.

Many other forum members reported similar problems. A thread devoted to the problem had drawn more than 2,000 views as of early Tuesday.

"I too intend to work with documents such as these and I didn't expect Pages and Keynote to strip ANYTHING out of an existing document," said a user going by the name Far182.

iWork is Apple's answer to Microsoft Office. The iPad comes with its own version, but it offers reduced functionality over its Mac-based counterpart. Some forum posters said the issue is a dealbreaker.

Thanks "for opening my eyes to these problems. I was holding out for next gen anyway, but this gives me even more reasons!" wrote Critterdom. " I'm more than a bit disappointed to learn all this."

In fairness to Apple, the company has posted specs warning users that iPad features a stripped down version of iWork, but one forum member complained the notice was "difficult to find."

The iPad went on sale Saturday.

Pricing for the Wi-Fi only version, which features 802.11 connectivity, starts at $499 for the 16GB model, $599 for the 32GB model, and $699 for the 64GB version.

The Wi-Fi + 3G versions, available later in April, are priced somewhat higher. The 16GB model is $629, the 32GB model is $729, and the 64GB version is $829.

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