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6 free alternatives to Microsoft Word

If you are uninterested in paying for Microsoft Office options you do not use, listed here are free alternatives to Word you may obtain and begin utilizing in the present day.

Image: anyaberkut, Getty Images/iStockphoto

Microsoft Word has its devotees, however discover one one that loves it, and also you’ll in all probability discover a number of who don’t. From redesigns that cover acquainted menu objects to overly sophisticated and infrequently unused options, there’s quite a bit to be desired in a easy phrase processor that Microsoft Word doesn’t ship due to its advanced nature. In addition, Microsoft Word and the remainder of Microsoft Office is pricey (right here’s the pricing for the house version of Microsoft Office).

If you don’t want all of the options that Microsoft Word provides, it may be onerous to justify paying that worth, particularly in a small enterprise setting the place you simply want a phrase processor. Don’t pay for what you aren’t going to use–check out one in all these 5 free Microsoft Word alternatives as a substitute.

Google Docs


Google Docs, which is definitely the most well-liked Microsoft Word different on this listing, is free to everybody with a Google account.

If you need the fundamental options of Microsoft Word, you don’t want to look any additional than Google Docs–it does all of your fundamental phrase processing wants, and it’s tightly built-in with Google Drive and different merchandise. Since every part is saved in Google’s cloud, you don’t want to fear about shedding your work–Docs autosaves after each single keystroke, so within the occasion of a crash you need to be ready to choose up proper the place you left off, down to the letter. Google Docs additionally helps Microsoft Word’s .doc and .docx codecs, so that you shouldn’t have any issues importing and enhancing these.

One of its finest options for enterprise customers is real-time collaboration. If you share a doc with one other Google consumer, each of you might be within the doc on the similar time, see the opposite consumer’s cursor place, watch what they’re typing, and chat to one another as properly. It’s an incredible collaboration instrument that stands out amongst phrase processors.

Advanced customers could discover the options missing–it truly is a bare-bones phrase processor.

Apache OpenOffice Writer

Image: Apache

If you hate Microsoft Word due to the invention of the ribbon, then Apache’s OpenOffice Writer is the 2003 throwback you need. It has a basic interface that, whereas it could actually look a bit cluttered, mimics the menus that Microsoft tossed out when Office 2007 was launched. It will certainly really feel acquainted to Office 2003 customers, with the added perk of nonetheless receiving updates and safety patches, which is essential for a enterprise software program suite.

OpenOffice Writer has its personal doc format, however it additionally helps .doc and .docx recordsdata, and it does an incredible job of sustaining formatting when importing these varieties of recordsdata. Many of the superior options of Microsoft Word are included in OpenOffice Writer as properly, so enhancing advanced Word paperwork received’t be a problem.

If on-line collaboration or native cloud assist is a promoting level, then it’s your decision to cross on OpenOffice Writer as a result of it consists of neither. It is feasible to retailer recordsdata in a cloud drive and entry them utilizing OpenOffice, however you’ll want to have the desktop consumer of Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, or Apple iCloud put in so you may open your cloud storage like an area laptop folder.

Zoho Writer

Add images, comments, and suggestions in Zoho Writer with collaboration tools.
Collaborator feedback and solutions in Zoho Writer. Image: Zoho

Zoho Writer is a free doc creation instrument with a clear writing interface and highly effective built-in capabilities. Writing paperwork in Writer is essentially distraction-free, whereas essential textual content instruments are nonetheless inside attain.

The native options of Writer, lots of which leverage the capabilities of different Zoho apps, actually set it other than the bunch. Use the built-in AI instrument, Zia, for higher high quality content material, quick grammar fixes and perception into the doc’s readability for various audiences. The Document Sign instrument places e-signature instruments proper within the doc, so groups can go from draft to approval to signature all in the identical area. And Document Fillable instruments put kinds proper in your paperwork, giving them an expert really feel that’s prepared for embedding wherever you want a type.

And not to be outdone by Google Docs or Microsoft Word, Zoho Writer’s real-time collaboration has granular controls together with feedback, solutions, textual content masking to cover some objects from collaborators and even content material locks for blocks of textual content. Zoho Writer is constructed for company collaboration, authorized approvals and inventive groups.

LibreOffice Writer

Image: The Document Foundation

LibreOffice Writer, like OpenOffice, is a very free and open-source product that gives phrase processing, assist for .doc and .docx file codecs, and all of the instruments the typical Microsoft Word consumer will want in a phrase processor. LibreOffice Writer and OpenOffice Writer are comparable in numerous methods: Interface type, file format assist, lack of cloud integration and real-time collaboration, and common phrase processing options. Both are strong decisions for these searching for a free different to Microsoft Word, and choosing one over the opposite largely comes down to desire.

One side of LibreOffice stands out, and it isn’t what’s within the app–it’s the community-driven nature of the platform. Collaborating with customers and builders to enhance the product is entrance and heart on LibreOffice’s web site, and that focus has grown LibreOffice right into a thriving neighborhood of customers and coders that maintain making it higher.

WPS Office Writer

Image: WPS Software

If you desire a phrase processor that’s simply as characteristic packed as Word, however you don’t need to pay a premium, try WPS Office Writer. TechRepublic sister website CNET has been singing the praises of WPS Office Writer for awhile, and with good purpose: It is a full-featured software suite that feels premium.

WPS Office Writer does many of the similar issues as Microsoft Word, and it consists of native cloud assist to make storing paperwork on-line a snap; nevertheless, it does lack real-time collaboration. Look at any evaluation of WPS Office Writer, and also you’ll discover statements that attest how a lot it’s like Word. With its inclusion of extra options than different free suites like OpenOffice, this is perhaps the one to go for–particularly contemplating you don’t have to pay for it.

With something free and top quality, there’s a catch, and also you may give you the option to guess what it’s in our fashionable age of “freemium” apps: Ads. Don’t let that dissuade you from attempting WPS Writer–you won’t see an advert. There’s no banner throughout the highest of the app–adverts solely seem whenever you need to use choose options like printing or exporting to PDF. If you want to do a kind of issues, you’ll have to sit by way of a roughly 10-second advert, which unlocks the characteristic for half-hour. If you want what WPS Writer has to provide, you may decide to remove adverts by paying a yearly subscription charge of $29.99, or you may fork over $119.99 for a lifetime license.

Microsoft Office Word Online

Image: Microsoft

Don’t overlook Microsoft’s free different to the paid model of Word: Office Online. Like Google Docs, Microsoft Word Online is a simplified, cloud-based model of Word. It lacks numerous the superior options of a locally-installed model of Word, however for customers who desire a free model of Word, that is as shut as you may get.

Similarities between Google Docs and Word Online are current all the best way down to the interface, however with a number of tweaks to make it really feel extra just like the Microsoft ribbon as a substitute of the drop-down menus Google Docs customers are used to. Documents created in Word Online are saved in Microsoft OneDrive, and real-time collaboration options like these in Google Docs can be found as properly. One massive plus in Word Online’s favor is formatting: If you create a doc in Word Online after which import it to an area model of Microsoft Word, it’s going to retain the formatting approach higher than if it’s made in Google Docs.

Editor’s observe: This article was up to date to replicate the present worth of WPS Office Writer.


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