Microsoft wants everyone to use its productivity software, regardless of the hardware or operating system they use most frequently. Today it’s catering to Apple enthusiasts with a hefty OneNote update for Mac, iPhone and iPad, introducing deeper OneDrive support, better notebook organisation and attachment options.
For starters, you can now access notebooks stored in a OneDrive for Business account. Using OneNote for Mac, you can now open these pages and edit them, as well as create new documents and share them with other people. They’ll be accessible alongside your existing notes from a personal OneDrive account, resulting in a single, unified repository.
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Across the Mac, iPhone and iPad apps, Microsoft has also added the ability to insert Office documents, PDFs, video and audio files into your pages. If you want to reference a Powerpoint presentation or a specific Word document in your pages, you can now easily drop them in and create a quick shortcut. PDF files can also be attached and annotated on inside OneNote.
On the Mac, you can open any attached file with Quick Look or a supported desktop app. For the iPhone and iPad, you can insert files found in an email (or any other app) by choosing the ‘Open in OneNote’ option from the share menu.
If any of your notebook sections are password protected, these can finally be accessed from a Mac or iOS device too. Just find the restricted area in OneNote, enter your password and you’re away. Once you’re done, it’s then possible to lock the section again manually – otherwise it will lock automatically after a few minutes. “That way, a confidential company note or study guide remains for your eyes, and your eyes only,” Microsoft said.
The updated Mac and iOS apps introduce the ability to reorder or move notes between sections and larger notebooks, as well as copy formatted content from website and other apps. When you’re ready to share a page from the updated Mac app, you can also export the document as standard text (with HTML and formatting maintained) for the body of an email – in the past, it was only possible to attach the contents as a separate PDF file.
None of these additions are earth-shattering, but it builds on the revamped OneNote for Mac that was launched in March. With the introduction of Office for iPad, Microsoft is beginning to build a compelling ecosystem for Apple users – something that should appeal to enterprise and casual users alike.
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