8 Alternatives to Microsoft Word You Should Try
Although Microsoft Word enjoys a large user base, it is not the only word processor available. Considering all the options out there, picking the one that best fits your requirements can feel like a Herculean task.
There is a wide range of solutions to match your writing and formatting needs, from free, open-source software to sophisticated premium tools. This article reviews eight excellent word processors that are viable substitutes for Microsoft Word.
Whether you’re in the market for a simple, low-cost option or a sophisticated, high-end one, we’ve got you covered. All right, let’s dive in and find the ideal option for your upcoming paper.
Jarte is a free word processor based on the Microsoft WordPad engine. It is suitable for anyone who needs a compact, fast-loading word processor that starts up quickly and gets out of your way.
Some of Jarte’s features include: a tabbed document interface, spell checker, thesaurus, text statistics tools, page break preview, image resizing tools, table creation wizard, and link verification. Jarte also supports opening and saving Microsoft Word documents (DOC and DOCX files).
AbleWord is a similar-looking software to Microsoft Word. At the top, you’ll find a standard menu with tools like File, Edit, and View, quick button actions for undo, redo, and spell check immediately below, and the font formatting bar right below that.
- Save documents as DOC, DOCX, PDF, HTML, or TXT.
- Insert images, text frames, tables, and page numbers.
- Format fonts, paragraphs, styles, columns, bullets, and numbering.
- Use tables by inserting, selecting, or deleting along with merging and splitting cells.
- And more: PDF file importing, print or draft layout views, word count, zoom in or out, and page layout options.
AbleWord is available for download at no charge with full functionality. And if you need assistance getting started, simply click the Help icon from the toolbar or visit AbleWord Online Help.
Use WordGraph for everything from writing a simple message to publishing a whole book with integrated pictures, tables of contents, indexes, and bibliographies. WordGraph is a full and sophisticated software solution for producing, editing and reading various sorts of documents. You can build basic or highly organised documents contain pictures, tables, charts, and insert spreadsheets you prepared using Accel.
- Select views from full width, centred outline, or full height along with thumbnail views along the side.
- Insert objects, images, tables, links, emoticons, equations, automatic text, and character art.
- Format fonts, paragraphs, and visual text effects.
- Use tools for spell check, word count, track changes, and online dictionaries, thesauruses, and translations.
- And more: Tiled windows, document exporting, history, and statistics, keyboard shortcuts, and cloud storage integration.
You can download WordGraph for free.
Many alternatives to Microsoft Word provide a more focused writing environment. One such alternative is FocusWriter. FocusWriter is a free, open-source programme that allows you to set up a virtual writing space complete with margins, headers, and footers. It also provides a distraction-free interface with a minimalistic design. This can be helpful if you find yourself getting easily sidetracked when working on long documents in Word.
5. Page Four
Page Four is an excellent word processor for both creative authors and master organisers. This is due to the Notebook feature’s ability to organise your items into a hierarchy. Create new notebooks with a single click. Organize your files with ease.
- Navigate to each page with tabs at the bottom of the window.
- Format fonts, paragraphs, and lists.
- Use tools to import or export notebooks, word count, and document locking via password.
- Click Smart-Edit to scan your document for overused words and phrases.
- Search for text on pages or in notebooks.
- And more: Customizable view for full-screen writing, snapshot feature with list display, ability to insert dates, characters, links, or email addresses.
Page Four comes from Bad Wolf Software and is available at no charge. Just note, the application will not receive future enhancements. But if you like the idea of a free tool that keeps your work organised well, take it for a spin.
6. Apache OpenOffice
OpenOffice is a word processor that is completely compatible with Microsoft’s program. It’s free and works on all sorts of operating systems. OpenOffice supports all sorts of features that you may have come to expect from a word processor, such as table editing, headers, footers and page numbering. The program also allows you to format files and save them in a number of different formats. As with most programs, however, you won’t find a rich set of features that makes it stand out from the other options. Still, it’s an effective and free alternative that may help you get your documents ready faster than you could with MS Word.
LyX is a full-featured word processor with tons of extras. You might be surprised at the number of buttons you see beneath the menu when you open Lyx, but the screen tips as you mouse over the buttons help. Select File > New, and you are on your way. You can also work with multiple documents with the handy tabbed view.
- Format fonts, lists, paragraphs, and sections.
- View outline, source, and message panes within the window.
- Insert everything from images, links, and tables to math formulas, citations, and comments.
- Use tools for spell check, thesaurus, statistics, and file comparisons.
- And more: Import and export with dozens of file types, math macros, margin notes and footnotes, labels, cross-references, and index entries.
LyX is free and open-source, and available across multiple platforms. The website offers a lot of helpful information regarding releases, bug tracking, and development statuses.
8. Hancom Office (formerly Thinkfree Online Editor)
If you would rather not download a word processor, Thinkfree Online Editor is an excellent option. To begin, either click the New Document plus sign on the main page or select Word from the New Document dropdown box at the top. You will see your standard menu items and buttons when the editor opens.
- Download documents as DOCX or PDF files.
- Format fonts and paragraphs.
- Add headers, footers, endnotes, page numbers, or page breaks.
- Insert shapes, images, tables, text boxes, symbols, bookmarks, or links.
- And more: Selection tools, ruler, task pane views to zoom in or out, page setup options like size, orientation, colour, and margins.
Thinkfree also offers spreadsheet and presentation document creations online for free. If you enjoy the product and are interested in the desktop office suite offerings, you might review those options too.
Website: Thinkfree Online Editor
The Best Alternatives to Microsoft Word
Whether it’s cost, access, or features, many word processors can give you what you need if you want to veer from Microsoft Word. So, pick the right one for you and get writing!