Polaris Office Spreadsheet Review
The other day, I decided to try out Polaris Office to create a very simple spreadsheet. The sheet consisted of rows for individual items and columns that show unit price, number of units and total price. This is pretty much the simplest spreadsheet you can make.
I was just so disappointed at the Polaris Office spreadsheet app. First of all, after you type in anything in a cell, you cannot use the <Tab>, <Enter> or arrow keys to advance your cursor to the next cell. You actually have to use the touch screen to select a new cell after you have finished typing. It was just so tedious having to take may fingers off my keyboard to touch the screen. I'm used to Excel my laptop where I can just <Tab> to go to the next cell in the row or <Enter>. I can even use the arrow keys to move to different cells. In Polaris, once you start typing, you have to use the touch screen to select a different cell to move to a different cell.
Another thing is that the default zoom on the tablet is like 150%. I don't understand why it doesn't default to like 100%. Every time I open my spreadsheet I cannot see all of it. It's not that big either. Just 11 rows. I can't change the default zoom either. It always start at 150%.
The formulae also do not update on the fly. You have to manually update it. In Excel, the formulae are updated immediately every time you make a change to a cell. This is not that bad. It's just annoying and requires an extra step every time I want to update.
What I also tried to do is on a cell, do a summation of an entire column. In Excel, I can simply select the entire column and it fills it in. In Polaris, I have to actually select the range of cells. I cannot select the entire column for the summation.
I do have a keyboard dock and my typing on it is approaching as fast as on a full-size keyboard. With all of the annoyances of Polaris Office and first time using it, the spreadsheet seemed like it took me over twice as long to create. Granted, it took me some time to get used Polaris, but Polaris works pretty much exactly like Excel except for what I mentioned above.
Perhaps I've been spoiled by Excel. I have in the past used other spreadsheet programs on the PC. Excel is heads and shoulders above anything else in terms of ease of use and presentation/formatting capabilities. Even compared to those other spreadsheet programs I used and those were 15 years old, Polaris Office doesn't measure up in terms of ease of use.
I am really disappointed in Polaris Office for spreadsheets. I had found my Eee Pad to be a very adequate replacement for my PC for many (although not all) things. Spreadsheet editing just isn't there. I may use it just to view a spreadsheet, but I will use my PC for any non-trivial amount of editing.