How to Create a Graph in Excel for iPad

Male using digital tablet in the office.
Use charts to spice up your Excel data on iPad.

On your iPad, you can quickly transform your Excel spreadsheet from a boring heap of numbers into an attractive chart. While Microsoft strangely left charts out of the release of Word and PowerPoint for iPad, it's rather easy to create them in Excel, and then paste them into Word or PowerPoint as needed.

These instructions apply to the iOS 11 version of Excel for iPad.

Screenshot of iPad Excel showing the options to edit a chart.

Creating a Basic Chart in Excel for iPad

  1. Begin by launching Excel on your iPad and open up a spreadsheet that contains graphable data. Such data should take the form of a grid with labels either in the first column, first row, or both. See the above image for one example.

  2. When you are ready to create your chart, tap on the top-left cell of your data grid.

  3. After tapping the blank cell, it will be highlighted with black circles at the top left and bottom right — these are anchors. Tap the bottom-right anchor and slide your finger to the bottom-right cell in your grid.

  4. Tap Insert at the top of the screen and choose Charts.

  5. There are several types available including bar charts, pie charts, area charts, and scatter charts. Navigate the categories and choose the kind you want to create.

Editing Your New Excel Chart

If you're not 100-percent happy with how Excel automatically formatted your chart, you can make a few changes including altering the labels and the overall layout.

Screenshot of iPad Excel showing data being selected for a chart.

Want to switch the labels?

If you want to switch the labels that appear on your chart, first tap the chart to highlight it and then tap the Switch option from the Chart menu.

Don't like the layout?

Any time you tap the chart to highlight it, a chart menu appears at the top. You can choose Layouts to switch to one of many different layouts. There are also options for changing the colors, the style, or even the type of graph.