What Is The Apple Version Of Excel?

Numbers is considered the Apple version of Microsoft Excel. It is a spreadsheet software developed by Apple and comes with very similar features to the MS Excel program. There is also an MS Excel version available for Mac.

MS Excel is like the industry standard when it comes to spreadsheet software. However, if you are using a Mac computer and looking for a spreadsheet program, Numbers is probably a better option. It has most of the features that you would expect from spreadsheet software, as well as an easy-to-use interface.

This blog post will help you learn more about Numbers and how it compares to Excel. Keep reading!

A Short Introduction to Numbers

Numbers is a spreadsheet software developed by Apple. It comes as a part of the iWork productivity suite, which also includes Pages and Keynote. Just like Excel, Numbers lets you create beautiful spreadsheets that can contain data, charts, and formulas.

The first version of Numbers was first released in 2007. Currently, the program is available for macOS High Sierra or newer. There is also an iOS and iPad version of Numbers that can be downloaded from the App Store. Moreover, Numbers for iCloud lets you access and edit your spreadsheets from a web browser on any device with an iCloud account and internet connection.

When you first open Numbers, you’ll see a welcome screen with templates for different types of spreadsheets you can create. There are templates for budgets, invoices, health tracking, and more. You can also start with a blank canvas if you want to create your own spreadsheet from scratch.

The software interface of the program is clean and uncluttered, and it is easy to navigate. So even if you’ve never used spreadsheet software before, you should be able to figure out how to use Numbers without any trouble.

Apple Numbers Vs. MS Excel: Which is Better?

Now that you know a little bit about each program, let’s compare them side-by-side.

User Interface

The user interface is one area where Apple Numbers and MS Excel differ quite a bit. Like the other native Apple programs, the Numbers interface is clean and minimalistic. It is not cluttered with a lot of menus and options, which can be overwhelming for some users. The interface is designed to be intuitive and easy to use.

In contrast, the MS Excel interface is a bit more complex and might require some time to get used to. However, once you understand how the program works, you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for pretty quickly.


In terms of features, MS Excel has a slight edge over Numbers. Excel has around 400 built-in features, along with 11 different categories. For Numbers, the amount of in-built features is about 262. So, if you are looking for a program that has more to offer in terms of features, Excel would be the better choice.

However, it is essential to note that most users only use a small fraction of the features that are available in spreadsheet software. So, unless you are an advanced user who needs specific features, the extra options in Excel might not be necessary.

Themes and Templates

When it comes to themes and templates, Numbers has a clear advantage. Numbers come with more themes and plugins which you can use to make your regular spreadsheet more visually appealing. However, although Excel has fewer templates compared to Numbers, it still has a decent selection that you can choose from. Additionally, you will find some complex templates in Excel which are not available in Numbers.


Numbers is only compatible with macOS and iOS devices. If you need to use a different operating system, such as Windows, you will not be able to use Numbers. However, Excel is compatible with both Windows and macOS devices. It is also available for Android and iOS mobile devices. So, in terms of compatibility, Excel is a better choice.

Cloud Support

Both Numbers and Excel have cloud support. However, the way that each program handles cloud sync is a bit different.

In Numbers, you can save your spreadsheet in iCloud and access it from any device with an internet connection by login into your iCloud account. You can also share your spreadsheet with other users and permit them to edit it in real-time.

Excel lets you invite someone to work on your spreadsheet through a link or email. They can view or edit the spreadsheet from any web browser.


When it comes to pricing, Apple Numbers is definitely the most affordable option. Numbers is available for free for all macOS and iOS devices. In contrast, Excel is only free to use if you have an Office 365 subscription. Otherwise, you will need to purchase a one-time licence for around $149.99.

So, which one should you choose? As you see, each program has its own strengths and weaknesses. Ultimately, the best choice for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences. If you use macOS and need a program for day-to-day tasks that is affordable and easier to use, Numbers would be a good choice.

However, if you are into professional data analysis or often need to use complex formulas, Excel would be a better option. Whichever program you choose, you can be sure that you will be able to get the job done.

Can I Use MS Office on the Apple Devices?

Yes, you can use MS Office on Apple devices. There is a version of Office Suite available for macOS. It includes MS Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. The interface of the Office Suite is a bit different from the Windows version, but it is still reasonably easy to use. The only downside is that it is not free to use.

MS Word is also available for iOS devices like iPhones and iPads. You can download it from the App Store, and it’s available free of charge. Since it’s optimised for mobile devices, the interface and features are slightly different and limited.

What are the Other Alternatives to MS Excel for PC?

There are many other alternatives to MS Word, with most of them being free to use. Some of the most popular options include:

Google Sheets: Google Sheets is a web-based spreadsheet application that is part of the Google Workspace suite. It has many features similar to Excel and is free to use. Since it’s a web-based application, it can be accessed from any device with an internet connection.

Apache OpenOffice Calc: A free and open-source spreadsheet application that is part of the Apache OpenOffice suite. Apart from macOS, you can also use it on Windows, Linux, and Android devices (as AndrOpen Office).

LibreOffice Calc: Another free and open-source spreadsheet application that comes with the LibreOffice suite. It has a wide range of features similar to MS Excel and is compatible with many operating systems, including macOS, Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android.


MS Excel has been the go-to spreadsheet application for many years. However, it is not the only option available. If you are an Apple user, you can simply use Numbers which is a perfectly viable alternative. There are also some other great free options like Google Sheets and LibreOffice Calc. As always, the best tool will depend on the specific needs and preferences of the user, but Apple aficionados will certainly appreciate the innovation behind Numbers.

Numbers Logo Featured Image by: icns file contained in iWork ’08, Fair use, Link