How to Work with Tables in the Numbers App for iPad - dummies

How to Work with Tables in the Numbers App for iPad

Tables are at the heart of Numbers for iPad — they’re where your data is entered. In order to work on a table, you need to select it. To select a table in Numbers, tap it. If it’s not visible in the current tab, just tap the tab it’s in.

When a table is selected, its appearance changes. A selected table is framed with gray bars above (the column frame) and to its left (the row frame). To the left of the column frame, a button with concentric circles lets you move the table. To the right of the column frame as well as beneath the row frame are two other buttons, each with four small squares (looking a bit like table cells) These are the Cells buttons. These buttons allow you to add rows, columns, or cells, and manipulate the cells in the table.


There’s one important tapping point to remember: You select a table by tapping it once, but where you tap matters.

  • If you tap in a cell, the table and that cell are selected.

  • If you tap inside the table bounds but outside the cells, the table itself is selected. For example, if you tap the table’s title or the blank space to the left or right of the title, the table itself is selected.

Moving a table

You can move a table around on its sheet. Select the table and tap the round button to the left of the column frame. Then drag the table where you want it. Numbers shows you the absolute coordinates of the location you’re dragging to. Light-colored lines help you align it to other objects on the sheet. These lines appear and disappear as the table is aligned with the edges or centers of other objects.


You can select several objects at the same time. Tap the first object to select it, and then, while still holding your finger down, tap the other objects you want to add to the selection with another finger. After that, they move or resize together. (You may need two hands for this.)

Cutting and pasting a table

You can select a table and then drag it around on a sheet by using the round button to the left of the column frame. But what if you want to place the table on a different sheet? To copy and paste a table onto a different sheet, follow these steps:

  1. Select the table by tapping inside the table bounds but outside the cells.

  2. Tap Cut from the selection buttons that appear above the table.

  3. Tap the tab of the sheet you want to add the table to.

  4. Tap in the sheet (but not in an existing table).

  5. Tap Paste.

    Then move and resize the table as you want.