Pages for iCloud: Write in other languages

Write in other languages

It’s easy to work in other languages while using Pages for iCloud. You can:

  • Write using language-specific characters: Set up an input source (a language-specific keyboard or character palette, for example) so you can write using language-specific characters such as accent marks (à), scripts such as Chinese (是).

  • Use region-specific numeric formatting: Set up Pages for iCloud to use the appropriate formatting for your language or region. For example, dates can appear in day/month/year order or in month/day/year order.

  • Change the direction of the text within a document: Show languages written from left to right (such as English or Chinese) and from right to left (such as Arabic or Hebrew) in the same document.

  • Create a document that uses different formatting for numbers, dates, time, and currency: Use the formatting conventions of a language other than your primary language in tables and charts.

Set up a keyboard or other input source for another language

To make language-specific characters available using your keyboard or other input device, you need to first set up an input source for each language you want to use.

Do one of the following:

  • On a Mac: Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Keyboard, then click Input Sources. Make sure “Show Input menu in menu bar” is selected, then click the Add button at the bottom of the left column to add a new language. For more information, in the Finder, choose Help > System Preferences Help.

    Languages you add appear in the Input menu on the right side of the menu bar (it looks like a flag or a language character, such as Chinese script). To enter characters in a different language, click the Input menu, then choose a keyboard.

    The Input menu on the upper-right side of the menu bar is open, and shows a number of languages available.
  • On a Windows computer: Select a keyboard in the Region and Language section of Time and Language settings (in PC Settings, click “Time and language,” click “Region and language,” then click “Add a language”). Click the Keyboard menu in the task bar, then choose the language from the list that appears.

To see which keys on your keyboard correspond to the various characters for the selected language, go to the Input Source pane of Keyboard preferences (on a Mac) or Time and Language settings (on a Windows computer).

Use region-specific numeric formatting

You can set up Pages for iCloud to allow formatting of numbers (such as dates, time, and currency) in the style appropriate for a particular language or region. For example, dates can appear in day/month/year order or in month/day/year order.

  • Go to iCloud Settings, click the current time zone/region, then choose a new region from the pop-up menu.

    To use the numeric format traditionally used in the selected language, select the “Make formats match language” checkbox.

You can change the formatting conventions used in an existing document only in Pages for Mac. For more information, open the document in Pages for Mac, choose Help > Pages Help, then search for “language and region.”

Change paragraph text direction

By default, text you type appears in the default text direction of the language your computer is currently set to use. If you want to use left-to-right and right-to-left languages in the same document, you can change the text direction for each language.

  1. Create a new document or open an existing one, and make sure it contains at least one character typed in a right-to-left language.

    For information about how to switch to another language, see the task above.

  2. Click in the paragraph whose text direction you want to change.

    If you select multiple paragraphs, the text in all of them will be formatted to match the first one you selected.

  3. In the Text section of the Format sidebar on the right, click the Text Direction button (below Alignment).

    If you don’t see the Text Direction button, make sure that a right-to-left language is selected in iCloud Settings, or that the document you’re editing includes right-to-left text.

    The Text Direction button in the Text section of the Format sidebar.

    The insertion point (or any selected text) moves to the other side, and the paragraph direction changes. Any subsequent paragraphs continue in the same direction. To change the direction, click the Text Direction button again.

    Note: The ruler and its tab stops always match the direction of a paragraph, so when you change the text direction for selected text, the ruler also changes.

If you’re working in a table, you can also reverse the direction of the text in a cell or reverse the entire table direction. For more information, see Format tables for bidirectional text.

Create a document with the formatting of a different language

When you create a new document, you can automatically format numbers, dates, time, and currency in tables and charts using the formatting conventions of a specific language and region. You might want to do this if you plan to share the document with someone in another region.

For example, some regions use commas instead of periods to indicate decimal points, or different monetary symbols for currency, or they display numbers from right to left instead of left to right.

This language setting affects only the current document.

  1. In the document manager, click the Create Document button in the toolbar.

  2. Click the pop-up menu in the upper-right corner of the template chooser and choose a language, then double-click a template.

    If the formatting conventions of a language differ by the region in which it’s spoken, choose the language and region you prefer. For example, English (United States).

    The pop-up menu on the top-right side of the template chooser with English (United States) selected.

    When you choose a new language, the titles of the templates and some formatting options in the Format sidebar change to reflect the language.

    If you add numbers, dates, times, or currency to a table, you can format the data using the conventions for the chosen language. Charts and page numbers also reflect the conventions of the chosen language.

    When you view a document that uses different language formatting, a message near the bottom of the document indicates the formatting used. To see examples of the formatting differences, click the language in the message.

    A message that says “This document uses Italian formatting.”

You can change the formatting conventions used in an existing document only in Pages for Mac. For more information, open the document in Pages for Mac, choose Help > Pages Help, then search for “language and region.”

You can also view the text in Pages for iCloud windows, messages, and buttons in another language. For more information, see Choose a language for Pages for iCloud.

Published Date: Jul 23, 2019
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