Collaborate on a shared spreadsheet in Numbers on Mac
Whether you’re the owner of a shared spreadsheet or have been invited to collaborate, after you open the spreadsheet you can see the edits made by others in real time, hide or show editing activity, and more.
Accept an invitation to collaborate
When you receive a link to a shared spreadsheet, what happens when you click the link depends on the access and permission set by the owner, the version of Numbers and macOS installed on your computer, and whether you’re using iCloud Drive.
Before you begin, make sure you meet the minimum system requirements for collaborating.
Click the link in the message you received.
If asked, sign in with your Apple ID or follow any instructions that appear.
If the email address or phone number used to invite you isn’t associated with your Apple ID, follow the instructions that appear to add that email or phone number to your Apple ID.
Note: If you don’t want to associate another email address with your Apple ID, you could instead ask the owner of the shared spreadsheet to invite you again using an email address or phone number that’s already associated with your Apple ID.
The spreadsheet opens based on the following factors:
On a Mac: The spreadsheet opens in Numbers for Mac if you clicked the link in an app like Mail on your Mac, you’ve set up and signed in to iCloud Drive on your Mac, and you have macOS 12 or later and Numbers 12.2 or later on your computer. If you don’t meet those requirements, or if you click the link on a web page, the spreadsheet may open in Numbers for iCloud.
On iCloud.com on a Mac or Windows computer: If you’re signed in to iCloud.com in a web browser, the spreadsheet opens in Numbers for iCloud, and it’s added to the spreadsheet manager and to iCloud Drive.
On an iPhone with iOS 15 or later: If Numbers 12.2 or later is installed on your iPhone, the spreadsheet opens in Numbers and is added to the spreadsheet manager.
On an iPad with iPadOS 15 or later: If Numbers 12.2 or later is installed on your iPad, the spreadsheet opens in Numbers and is added to the spreadsheet manager. If you don’t have Numbers installed on your iPad, the spreadsheet opens in Numbers for iCloud.
On an Android device, or a device without iOS 15 or later or iPadOS 15 or later, using Numbers 12.2 or later: The spreadsheet opens in a browser where you can view but not edit it.
Collaborate on a shared spreadsheet
Open the shared spreadsheet.
If you previously opened the spreadsheet, look for it in the Numbers folder of iCloud Drive. If you don’t see the spreadsheet, click the link in the invitation you received, and, if asked, sign in with Apple ID.
If you can’t open the spreadsheet, see Accept an invitation to collaborate.
Edit the spreadsheet.
Edits you and others make to the spreadsheet appear in real time. Cursors and selections of text and objects appear in different colours to indicate where others are currently editing. Move your pointer over a cursor to see who’s making the edit.
If there are conflicts, a dialogue appears and you can choose the version you want to keep. If you keep more than one, the most recent remains the shared version.
Edit while offline
If the Collaborate button changes to a cloud with a diagonal line through it, your device is offline.
You can continue to work on the spreadsheet and the next time you’re online, changes are uploaded to iCloud automatically.
After you reconnect, you can see the latest activity in the shared spreadsheet.
Here are a few things to keep in mind while editing a shared spreadsheet when you’re offline:
To send a copy of the document with your changes to someone else before your changes are uploaded, click Share in the toolbar or choose File > Share (from the File menu at the top of your screen), then choose Send Copy. This method ensures that your changes are included. By contrast, if you drag the spreadsheet from the Finder to an email message, for example, the edits you made while offline are not included.
If you’re not sure whether your changes have synced, you can check their status. Choose View > Show Sync Status (from the View menu at the top of your screen).
If other participants who are online delete objects or sheets that you’re editing, the edits you made to those objects are no longer in the spreadsheet when you go back online.
To learn more, see the Apple Support article About collaboration for Pages, Numbers and Keynote.
Opt out of a shared spreadsheet
If you no longer want to have access to a spreadsheet that was shared with you, you can remove yourself from the participant list.
Click in the toolbar, then click Manage Shared Spreadsheet.
In the participant list, move the pointer over your name, click , then choose Remove Me.
Removing your name from the participant list removes the spreadsheet from your iCloud Drive. If you later want to access the spreadsheet again, you can use the original link to open it.
Note: Not all Numbers features are available for a spreadsheet that’s shared with others. See the Apple Support article About collaboration for Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.