Pi 𝜋 choices in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook

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There are twelve different styles for the Pi symbol 𝜋  into Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint or Outlook.  Both in Office for Windows and Office for Mac.

Pi is, of course, the famous math constant.  𝜋 r2 calculates the circumference of a circle from it’s radius.  3.14159265358979….  but in Excel you can use Pi() to enter the exact value to 15 digits.

The 𝜋 symbol was originally a lower case Greek letter π but there are a dozen separate characters for the math Pi.

How Pi 𝜋 looks in different fonts.

Here’s how Pi 𝜋 looks in two common Office fonts.  In many cases modern Word will insert the Cambria Math version because the selected font doesn’t support the symbol.  Pi is also in Segoe UI Symbol.

As we’ll see, there are many Pi symbol variations, this is the commonly used “Mathematical Small Pi Italic” Unicode 1D70B.

Pi 𝜋 codes

These are the important code numbers or values you’ll need to enter the Pi or ℼ as a small italic character.

Hex:   1D70B

`Web:  &pi;  or or &#x1D70B;`

(web codes aren’t used in Microsoft Office, we’ve included them for the sake of completeness.)

Quick Pi shortcut in Word

Word for Windows has a Ctrl + Shift + Q shortcut to make the Pi symbol.

Ctrl + Shift + Q then P — makes the capital PI 𝜫

Ctrl + Shift + Q then p – makes the lower case Pi 𝜋

A few things to keep in mind:

• Ctrl + Shift + Q only works in Word for Windows – not Mac.
• It displays the Symbol font which doesn’t use the Unicode system. Switching to another symbol font (like Segoe UI Symbol) will NOT show the same character.

Many other Pi symbols

The Unicode system has twelve different versions of the Pi Symbol.  Bold, Italic, Bold Italic and Sans-Serif variations – all shown at the top of the article. They are all available in the Cambria Math font.

Use the Alt + X trick to type any of these into Word.

Hex: 1D6B7

Hex: 1D6D1

Hex: 1D6F1

Hex: 1D70B

Hex: 1D72B

Hex: 1D745

Hex: 1D765

Hex: 1D77F

Hex: 1D79F

Hex: 1D7B9

Hex: 213F

Hex: 213F

Pi emoji

There is no Pi emoji, best we can offer is 🥧  <grin>

That’s Unicode 1F967

Pi in the Equation Editor

Of course, the Office Equation Editor has the Pi symbol.

In an Equation, pull-down the Symbols gallery and click on the 𝜋 symbol.

Or go to Insert | Symbols | Equation and the first Built-In option includes 𝜋

Word and Outlook

The Pi ℼ  sign does NOT have an inbuilt shortcut in Word.

Use the standard Word Alt + X symbol shortcut  1D70B , Alt + X  or whichever version of Pi you like from the list above.

Once in a document you can copy it to AutoCorrect and make your own shortcut.

Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook

Insert | Symbols | Symbol and look for the  Pi symbol.  Enter the Unicode U+ value from the list above.

Windows

In Windows there are several shortcuts to enter the Pi ℼ  character into any program, but they use a numeric keypad, not the number row above the letters.

Alt + 8508

Windows Character Map

The Windows Character Map accessory in all Windows releases

Character Map has a search feature, something missing from the Insert | Symbol in Office.  Unfortunately it can’t find whole words and isn’t case-sensitive. Searching for ‘Pi’ finds many symbols with those two letters like Capital.

MacOS and Office for Mac inserting characters

On a Mac, to enter the Pi ℼ symbol:

• Command + Control + Spacebar shortcut to open the Character Viewer.
• Choose ‘Math Symbols’ from the category list.
• Scroll down to find the Pi you want.
• Sadly searching for ‘Pi’ shows a lot of other symbols.
• Once you have found one ‘Pi’ symbol, others show up in the Related Characters list.

Despite the name Character Viewer, the Apple system tool will also insert characters into any program, including Office for Mac.

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