Microsoft Office Word is undoubtedly the most widely-used text editor. It allows you to create documents easily. So finding Microsoft Word alternatives can feel like a short list of options.
Why would anyone want to choose something else?
Well, this dominant word processor does have its drawbacks. There’s no free version, and it only works on a limited number of operating systems. Also, many think it’s a bit too complicated and unusable for today’s needs.
Although MS Word has fans, some people prefer to use a different program with similar capabilities. We’ve got you covered if you’re looking for text editors that work across various operating systems and don’t want to pay for Microsoft Word premium features you don’t use.
Here’s our review of the 10 best free Microsoft Word alternatives, features, pricing, and ratings for all!
What is Microsoft Word?
Microsoft Word, or MS Word, is a document processor published by Microsoft and is one of the productivity apps included in the Microsoft Office suite. First released in 1983, the program is the brainchild of Richard Brodie and Charles Simonyi. It is available for MS Windows, Android, Apple iOS, and Apple macOS and is compatible with the Linux OS using WINE. Notable Microsoft Word features include:
- Allows users to create professional-quality documents
- Allows font and text formatting
- HTML and image support
- Advanced page layout
- Grammar check
If you’re fed up with the unnecessary features you pay for with an MS Office subscription, there are several word processors you can use instead. These document editors can get downloaded for free and are excellent for those who only need a word processor and not the other features from Microsoft Office.
Microsoft Word benefits vs. limitations
Undoubtedly, the most notable MS Word benefit is its ability to help you produce documents in different formats. It’s also easy to work with and can integrate your documents with other media within the Microsoft Office suite, including worksheets, presentations, flowcharts, and graphs. Its ability to track edits and changes in your documents ensures easy collaboration when working in a team.
Nonetheless, Microsoft Word can get expensive because users often purchase additional tools they’ll never need or use. Furthermore, the program may not always be intuitive. For example, you may encounter downtimes when incorporating pictures into your documents or aligning text around the images.
10 best Microsoft Word alternatives
1. ClickUp Docs
If you’re looking for a free but feature-rich MS Word alternative, the Docs feature in ClickUp is just what you need. The document editor helps you create eye-catching and functional documents, wikis, and more in one user-friendly platform.
You can add tables, embed bookmarks, and more while formatting your documents. ClickUp is more than merely a text editor. It’s a hub where teams come together to plan, organize, and collaborate on work using tasks, Docs, Chat, Goals, Whiteboards, and more. Tag team members through comments, assign action items, and convert plain text into tasks.
Users working on one project can conveniently add widgets to change product statuses, assign tasks, update workflows, and more within one editor. It’s easy to keep your work organized because ClickUp categorizes your documents for quick access and searchability. Critical resources can also get managed and added to any section of your Workspace.
🔑 ClickUp Docs key features
- Create Docs with rich formatting options
- Create relationships to link Docs and tasks
- Easily assign tasks and update workflows
- Compatible with various file formats
✅ ClickUp Docs pros
- Unmatched customization capabilities
- Top-notch team collaboration
- Categorizes your work
- Real-time reporting
❌ ClickUp Docs cons
- Not all ClickUp views are available on the mobile app (yet!)
💸 ClickUp Docs pricing
- ClickUp offers a Free Forever Plan and paid plans starting at $7/user per month
💬 ClickUp Docs customer ratings
- G2: 4.7/5 (3,880+ reviews)
- Capterra: 4.7/5 (2,480+ reviews)
2. Google Docs
Arguably, Google Docs is a powerful word processor and among the better-known alternatives to Microsoft Word. It mirrors Microsoft Word in terms of functionality. It allows users to create files and share them in various formats. The functionality of Google Docs can get extended using different add-ons. Although Google Docs is a web-based text editor, it allows you to work on documents offline.
You can continue to edit your documents even without an internet connection. Since it’s a file-sharing service, Google Docs is excellent for real-time collaboration. It provides G Suite integration and is compatible with multiple file formats, including PDF.
🔑 Google Docs key features
- Add-ons such as MLA, DocuSign, and LucidChart
- Offers real-time collaboration
- Works like MS Word
✅ Google Docs pros
- Speech recognition and ability to translate files from various foreign languages
- Saves work automatically
- Allows offline editing
❌ Google Docs cons
- Formatting issues may arise when importing content from formats such as PDF or RTF
- It has a restricted selection of templates
💸 Google Docs pricing
- Google Docs is a free text editor, but pricing plans in the Google Workspace suite start at $6 per user per month
💬 Google Docs customer ratings
- Capterra: 4.7/5 (25,928+ reviews)
- G2: 4.6/5 (39,800+ reviews)
3. LibreOffice Writer
Dubbed the all-inclusive word processor for all types of text-based work, LibreOffice Writer is among the most impressive alternatives to Microsoft Word. It’s compatible with Linux, macOS, and Windows operating systems. LibreOffice Writer is considered a feature-packed analog version of MS Word and comes with all the tools you need for text-based work.
The text editor is available in two versions, and both feature templates and wizards for creating all document types. It also supports different file formats and allows you to export documents to PDF without additional software. So if you’re looking for a text editor that stands in for Microsoft Word, you won’t go wrong with LibreOffice.
🔑 LibreOffice Writer key features
- Excellent format compatibility
- Available in two versions to suit your needs
- Downloadable without providing your information
✅ LibreOffice Writer pros
- Document template galleries
- No ads and paywalls
- Supports multiple plugins
❌ LibreOffice Writer cons
- Technical support isn’t provided
- Slow and takes a lot of memory because it’s a Java program
💸 LibreOffice Writer pricing
- The Collabora version is free for up to 20 users but can get upgraded to a paid plan for up to 99 users at $18 per user yearly
- The CIB version costs $14.99 per user yearly and can get installed on up to 10 devices
💬 LibreOffice Writer customer ratings
- G2: 4.1/5 (59 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.3/5 (1,370+ reviews)
4. WPS Office Free Writer
Anyone who has used the newer versions of Microsoft Word but didn’t like the complexity should consider switching to WPS Office Writer. The free text editor looks and works almost like Microsoft Word and even features its equivalent of OneDrive, which offers 1GB of free cloud storage.
WPS Office Free Writer comes with templates to help you create multiple document tasks. It’s compatible with most text file formats, including current MS Word versions. Discrete ads support the free version of WPS Office Writer, but you can remove them by choosing the premium versions. This is an impressive word processor and one of the best alternatives to Microsoft Word.
🔑 WPS Office Free Writer key features
- The WPS PDF to Word converter allows you to work on multiple document formats
- The free version provides basic editing tools needed to work on your documents
- Cloud storage offers a secure space for your documents
- Designed to mirror Microsoft Word
✅ WPS Office Free Writer pros
- Provides impressive file format support
- The nested interface mimics Microsoft Word
- Free cloud storage
❌ WPS Office Free Writer cons
- May contain pop-up ads
💸 WPS Office Free Writer pricing
- WPS Office Premium subscription costs $3.99 monthly, $18.99 for six months, and $29.99 annually
💬 WPS Office Free Writer customer ratings
- G2: 4.4/5 (232 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.5/5 (841 reviews)
This MS Word alternative is touted as the ideal text editor for fast drafts, thanks to the relative ease of formatting docs. It’s compatible with Linux, macOS, and Windows OS. It’s excellent for those who want to type out a page or two without worrying about formatting.
FocusWriter features a suite of clever tools designed to optimize productivity. As the name suggests, the text editor blocks out all distractions so that you focus on your drafts. When you open the text editor, a blank page is all you’ll see.
🔑 FocusWriter key features
- Features alerts that get triggered at specified times
- Designed to minimize distractions as you work
✅ FocusWriter pros
- The timers and alarms come in handy when working against time
- The fading features allow you to focus on your work
- Your work gets saved automatically
❌ FocusWriter cons
- Excellent for productivity but not ideal for editing documents
💸 FocusWriter pricing
- Free for life
💬 FocusWriter customer ratings
- Capterra: 4.6/5 (68 reviews)
- G2: 4.6/5 (12 reviews)
Bonus: Check out these Microsoft Whiteboard alternatives!
6. Zoho Docs
Few text editors are better suited for educational and business tasks than Zoho Docs. The web-based software can be used in your favorite browser and comes with a user-friendly UI that can easily get managed via tabbed menus. In addition, Zoho Docs allows users to upload and download documents in DOCX format. It also supports collaboration, enabling you to work in real-time with your colleagues.
🔑 Zoho Docs key features
- Two-way synchronization, recovery, and file encryption
- Blends with other text editors seamlessly
- Can serve as an email marketing solution
- Provides cloud storage for your docs
✅ Zoho Docs pros
- Document management and visibility
- Saves your docs automatically
- Robust password security
❌ Zoho Docs cons
- The free version has limited space, making it unsuitable for editing large documents
💸 Zoho Docs pricing
- $5 per month per user when you upgrade your subscription
💬 Zoho Docs customer ratings
- G2: 4.4/5 (206 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.5/5 (151 reviews)
Bonus: Microsoft Access Competitors!
This Microsoft Word alternative has features to help you create documents in multiple formats and collaborate with your team in real-time. With this text editor, you can create documents and tables, embed graphics, and more. It also has an in-built Mail Merge tool that allows you to fill out your email fields automatically.
🔑 AbiWord key features
- Fitted with multiple plugins and features that make it highly functional
- Compatibility with various platforms and text formats
- Saves your documents automatically
- HTML support
✅ AbiWord pros
- The plugin architecture can be expanded
- Saves your files in DOCX format
- Available in multiple languages
❌ AbiWord cons
- You can’t export PDF files
💸 AbiWord pricing
- Inquire with AbiWord for pricing
💬 AbiWord customer ratings
- G2: 4.1/5 (15 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.3/5 (1,378 reviews)
8. FreeOffice TextMaker
This impressive Microsoft Word alternative comes with handy templates for creating everyday documents. FreeOffice TextMaker has all the features to expect from a modern text editor, including advanced formatting options, change-tracking, and the ability to create databases for managing footnotes and bibliographies.
🔑 FreeOffice TextMaker key features
- Ability to track changes when collaborating on text editing projects
- You can create your templates and save them for future use
- Neat and easy-to-navigate intuitive user interface
✅ FreeOffice TextMaker pros
- Can print multiple pages per worksheet
- It Opens password-secured files
- Can export files to EPUB format
❌ FreeOffice TextMaker cons
- Doesn’t support DOCX files
💸 FreeOffice TextMaker pricing
- Free for life
💬 FreeOffice TextMaker customer ratings
- G2: 4.3/5 (110 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.5/5 (235 reviews)
9. Write Monkey
This productivity-focused program comes equipped with quick shortcuts to make word processing easier. It’s only compatible with Windows OS and is designed to optimize your output without worrying about formatting or editing. Although Write Monkey may not be ideal for creating documents such as CVs or letters, it’s excellent for committing ideas to paper or later development. It’s only compatible with TXT files, and therefore, you must convert different formats before working on them.
🔑 Write Monkey key features
- Only works with TXT format
- Designed to help you commit ideas to memory
- Available as a portable app
✅ Write Monkey pros
- Distraction-free interface optimizes productivity
- Handy keyboard shortcut
- Supports markup
❌ Write Monkey cons
- Not suitable for creating large files
💸 Write Monkey pricing
- Free for life
💬 Write Monkey customer ratings
- G2: 4.4/5 (27 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.9/5 (179 reviews)
10. iWork Pages
If you want an MS Office alternative with multiple templates that allow the creation of various document types such as resumes, books, newsletters, and reports, you’ll love iWork Pages. The convenient text editor allows you to make changes to your documents in one click and provides robust password protection and the ability to work with files in different formats.
🔑 iWork Pages key features
- Easy to export and import Microsoft docs
- Available as part of the iWork suite
- Navigable, user-friendly intuitive interface
✅ iWork Pages pros
- Offers limitless document creation options on one page
- Advanced features are offered by Apple’s graphic
- Saves your work in multiple formats as you prefer
❌ iWork Pages cons
- Only compatible with iOS and macOS
💸 iWork Pages pricing
- 50GB: $0.99 per month
- 200GB: $2.99 per month
- 2TB: $9.99 per month
💬 iWork Pages customer ratings
- G2: 4.6/5 (13 reviews)
- Capterra: 4.4/5 (71 reviews)
Get more done with time-saving Docs in ClickUp
There are many options for Microsoft Word alternatives. Nonetheless, few offer the flexibility and functionality of ClickUp Docs. One thing that stands out about ClickUp is that it’s a collaboration-driven platform focused on helping you to team up in real-time.
Sign up for ClickUp Docs for free today to enjoy unlimited text editing!