Set cell category to Text, and numbers will work either as text or as numbers: Depending on what?

  • Set some cells format to category Text.
  • Type in some numbers.
  • In another cell with category set to Number, use references to these cells to make some calculation (e.g. =A1+A2, or =ABS(A1)) and you will get a numeric answer; but you will get 0 with =SUM(A1:A2).

Text numbers¹ works with: +, -, *, /, ^. The same goes for cells with category set to Number if ' (apostrophe) is placed in front of each number.

What kind of functions does it not work with? There is some list?

I am with LibreOffice (x86); OS: Windows 6.1. Thanks.

¹ If you have already entered normal
numbers in cells and have afterwards
changed the format of the cells to
“Text”, the numbers will remain normal
numbers. They will not be converted.
Only numbers entered afterwards, or
numbers which are then edited, will
become text numbers. (Formatting Numbers as Text).

LibreOffice is strict about the conversion of text-numbers into numbers.

Detailed Calculation Settings -Conversion from text to number

Only direct references, depending on the set up, can be converted, range references like SUM(A1:A2) are never converted.


Detailed Calculation Settings for version 6.4.