Office Software and Apps for Mac

Maximize your productivity with these programs and apps

A person typing at a MacBook Pro Laptop with a cup of coffee nearby

Jakraphong Pongpotganatam / Getty Images 

Find your best office software suite productivity solution for Mac by investigating these popular options.

This list takes you through several alternatives, because you have other options than just Apple's iWork or Microsoft's Office for Mac, though those popular options are available as well.

Free Versus Premium Options

This list begins with free options then moves to premium alternatives if you have a little money to invest in your productivity software. Many free suites offer plenty of tools for some users, so you may be able to save money.

That said, keep in mind that premium office software suites may offer the additional features you may need, so for some users, the value can be worth the cost.

OpenOffice for Mac (Desktop) - FREE

OpenOffice logo

Apache Software Foundation

The Apache Software Foundation administers an open source software suite that is one of the most popular worldwide, in part because it is compatible with so many operating systems.

What We Like
  • Free.

  • Capably tackles most common Microsoft Office tasks.

What We Don't Like
  • Installation occasionally glitchy.

  • Intuitive interface, but not as sleek as Microsoft Office.

LibreOffice for Mac (Desktop) - FREE

The LibreOffice logo

The Document Foundation


LibreOffice was voted by this site's community to be the Readers' Choice Award Winner of Favorite Office Software for Mac.

A free office suite, LibreOffice is nonetheless a powerful rival to more expensive office software suites.

What We Like
  • Open-source, with frequent updates.

  • Extensive help through documentation and large community.

  • Reliably compatible with Microsoft Office formats.

What We Don't Like
  • No integrated cloud storage.

  • No real-time collaborative editing.

iWork for iCloud (Online) - FREE

The iWork suite logo


You can also check out iWork for iCloud, the free online version of iWork. This requires an online account, which implies needing an internet connection.

This can be a great option for someone who wants to stay within the Apple lineup of products.

What We Like
  • Free.

  • No Apple device necessary, enabling cross-platform collaboration.

  • Documents accessible from anywhere.

What We Don't Like
  • Requires internet connection.

  • Not as fully featured as Apple’s desktop versions.

Google Docs / Apps for Mac (Online) - FREE

The Google Docs icons


Access the free web-based Google Docs and mobile Google Apps by signing up for Google Drive.

Google's online suites are not as function-rich as iWork or Microsoft Office but are still robust and very popular as accessible, user-friendly versions of tasks for the average user. You will find free and business versions.

What We Like
  • Free.

  • Widely used.

  • Accessible from anywhere.

What We Don't Like
  • Lacks a few features of Microsoft Office.

  • Docs aren’t always mirror images of Office versions.

Microsoft Office for Mac - Varies

The logo art for Microsoft for Office


Microsoft has traditionally offered a separate Mac version for Office.

Find desktop versions, 2016 and earlier, by visiting Office for Mac News & Tips.

Office 2016 is the latest version of the traditional desktop suite and a subscription-based Microsoft 365 is available for Mac.

What We Like
  • Familiar, intuitive interface.

  • Robust set of features.

What We Don't Like
  • Can be expensive.

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