Office apps for iPhone and iPad can now open, edit, and store files on iCloud

The new versions of the Word, PowerPoint, and Excel iOS apps should make it easier for users to quickly store their documents remotely using iCloud. In addition, each app has their own new additions. The Word app has some new templates to choose from to make creating documents quicker, while the PowerPoint app now allows users to insert images and videos from the iPhone or iPad's camera directly into any presentation. The app also supports a way to quickly change the layout of a presentation slide.

Finally, the Excel app now supports add-in programs that can improve the look of spreadsheets. This particular feature is currently supported only on the iPad and requires iOS 8.2 and higher.

Check out our ultimate guide to using iCloud

I have been writing professionally about technology and gaming news for 14 years.

  • Am I just blind, or has nothing changed with iCloud support? I can only view iCloud storage when choosing to open a document, and even then office documents seem to be grayed out, thus losing the ability to edit. I can't save a new document to iCloud as OneDrive and Dropbox are still the only locations available. Am I missing something here?
  • microsoft trolling with you lol
  • They're still mad about when I worked there but insisted on using my Mac.
  • I don't believe you are blind, as I can't see an option to save to iCloud, only one drive and Dropbox
  • You actually have to click the '...More' option on the Places screen to open/save to iCloud. It's not very obvious. It also appears that you can't save to iCloud without a 365 subscription, though you can open/save from Dropbox without one. Weird. I expect a future update to make opening/saving from iCloud more obvious.
  • I have a 365 subscription and it does not work as you suggest.
  • That's interesting. When I tried to save to iCloud Drive with my free account, I was told I needed a 365 subscription to do so. Maybe the functionality wasn't properly implemented, and we'll need another update to fix it.
  • This doesn't make sense to me as yo have to pay for a subscription to use the apps and access Microsoft's cloud. If you can edit and save to Apple's cloud on the free apps as it says here, then why would anyone pay Microsoft for these products?
  • For clarification, you can use both Microsoft's mobile apps and use OneDrive for free. The non-mobile apps, and extra features in the mobile apps, and more storage in OneDrive is what costs money. Outside of that, the short answer is "it depends". If your office apps needs are light, you don't need a large amount of cloud storage, and you either 1. have a Mac for any heavy office app work (of which doing on an iPhone or iPad would be cumbersome) or 2. have a PC but your needs are light enough to be done in iCloud's web app, then sticking with Apple's iWork suite (or heck, even Google Docs) for free would work fine. Several other factors would make 365 a better option however:
    1. You need lots of cloud storage at a decent price.
    2. You own a Windows PC and use Office-type products a lot
    3. You need Excel's abilities that competing spreadsheet products don't have
    4. You work with complex Word documents - Pages/Google Docs don't perfectly convert complex Word document from other sources. Given the above, Office 365 is actually a very good route to go. For example, I recently realized that my mother-in-law only had an external hard drive as her sole backup for over 8 years worth of photos (about 200GB worth). In looking at the different cloud storage providers available, OneDrive was the best deal at $7/month for 1TB. Additionally, she was still running Office 2007 on her Windows laptop so switching to 365 would upgrade her to Office 2013. Switching to Office 365 was a easy decision for her. Even someone with a Mac would have reason to use Office 365. If they need Excel, or work with Word documents that uses features that Pages doesn't support, and they need the aforementioned cloud storage, than Office makes sense for them as well. It all depends on what the individuals needs are. For some, using iWork is perfectly fine (my wife uses it), for others, the whole 365 package makes perfect sense. FWIW - I don't have a 365 subscription, but if my cloud storage needs dictate I need more than what I get for free on OneDrive now, I might end up getting one just for the cloud storage alone, the Office apps would just be a bonus.