There are two important aspects to Apple's notice regarding the lost functionality in the new iWork suite:
- On the surface, it commits to reintroducing some of this functionality within the next 6 months.
Implied is that there is a team working hard on iWork.
Apple rarely talks future plans, and for the most part this serves them well. That said, the level of outrage over the new iWork wasn't surprising. Most people don't know how much effort has been going into iWork, or even if there was ongoing major development now that a new version has been released. Those using iWork on the Mac only had a long gap between major releases, followed by reduced functionality, on which to base their reaction.
The limited announcement in the notice doesn't cross into the questionable territory of vaporware. Instead, it provides reassurance that this is only the start of the new iWork and that there is more to come.1 Having watched the same scenario of outrage play out across three product reboots, it strikes me that communicating plans like this immediately would have have prevented a lot of ire and criticism in each case. Let's hope Apple uses this as a model for future product transitions.
- And with AppleScript getting a couple shout-outs, maybe there won't be so many "Apple is dumbing down its software" comments. ↩