Microsoft Phrase has its devotees, however discover one one who loves it and you will in all probability discover a number of that do not. From redesigns that conceal acquainted menu objects to overly difficult (and infrequently unused) options, there’s quite a bit to be desired in a easy phrase processor that Microsoft Phrase does not ship as a consequence of its advanced nature. As well as, Microsoft Phrase and the remainder of Workplace is pricey.
For those who do not want all of the options that Microsoft Phrase provides, it may be laborious to justify paying that worth, particularly in a small enterprise atmosphere the place you simply want a phrase processor. Do not pay for what you are not going to make use of—check out one in all these 5 free Microsoft Phrase options as a substitute.
SEE: IT budgeting: The best way to do it proper (free PDF) (TechRepublic)
1. Google Docs
Google Docs, which is definitely the most well-liked Microsoft Phrase various on this listing, is free to everybody with a Google account.
If you’d like the fundamental options of Microsoft Phrase, you need not look any additional than Google Docs—it does all of your primary phrase processing wants, and it’s tightly built-in with Google Drive and different merchandise.
Since all the things is saved in Google’s cloud, you need not fear about dropping your work—Docs autosaves after each single keystroke, so within the occasion of a crash it’s best to be capable to choose up proper the place you left off, right down to the letter.
Google Docs additionally helps Microsoft Phrase’s .doc and .docx codecs, so you should not have any issues importing and modifying these.
One in every of its greatest options for enterprise customers is real-time collaboration. For those who share a doc with one other Google person, each of you may be within the doc on the similar time, see the opposite person’s cursor place, watch what they’re typing, and chat to one another as properly. It is an awesome collaboration software that stands out amongst phrase processors.
Superior customers might discover the options missing—it truly is a bare-bones phrase processor.
2. Apache OpenOffice Author
For those who hate Microsoft Phrase due to the invention of the ribbon, then Apache’s OpenOffice Author is the 2003 throwback you need.
It has a basic interface that, whereas it may possibly look a bit cluttered, mimics the menus that Microsoft tossed out when Workplace 2007 was launched. It would positively really feel acquainted to Workplace 2003 customers, with the added perk of nonetheless receiving updates and safety patches, which is vital for a enterprise software program suite.
OpenOffice Author has its personal doc format, nevertheless it additionally helps .doc and .docx information, and it does an awesome job of sustaining formatting when importing these varieties of information. Lots of the superior options of Microsoft Phrase are included in OpenOffice Author as properly, so modifying advanced Phrase paperwork will not be a difficulty.
If on-line collaboration or native cloud help is a promoting level, then chances are you’ll wish to go on OpenOffice Author as a result of it consists of neither.
It’s potential to retailer information in a cloud drive and entry them utilizing OpenOffice, however you will must have the desktop shopper of Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, or Apple iCloud put in so you’ll be able to open your cloud storage like a neighborhood laptop folder.
three. LibreOffice Author
LibreOffice Author, like OpenOffice, is a totally free and open-source product that gives phrase processing, help for .doc and .docx file codecs, and all of the instruments the common Microsoft Phrase person will want in a phrase processor.
LibreOffice Author and OpenOffice Author are comparable in a number of methods: Interface type, file format help, lack of cloud integration and real-time collaboration, and basic phrase processing options. Each are strong selections for these on the lookout for a free various to Microsoft Phrase, and deciding on one over the opposite largely comes right down to desire.
One facet of LibreOffice stands out, and it is not what’s within the app—it is the community-driven nature of the platform. Collaborating with customers and builders to enhance the product is entrance and middle on LibreOffice’s web site, and that focus has grown LibreOffice right into a thriving group of customers and coders that maintain making it higher.
four. WPS Workplace Author
If you’d like a phrase processor that is simply as function packed as Phrase, however you do not wish to pay a premium, take a look at WPS Workplace Author. TechRepublic sister website CNET has been singing its praises for some time, and with good cause: It’s a full-featured software suite that feels premium.
WPS Workplace Author does a lot of the similar issues as Microsoft Phrase, and it consists of native cloud help to make storing paperwork on-line a snap; nonetheless, it does lack real-time collaboration.
Have a look at any evaluate of WPS Workplace Author, and you will find statements that attest how a lot it is like Phrase. With its inclusion of extra options than different free suites like OpenOffice, this is perhaps the one to go for—particularly contemplating you do not have to pay for it.
With something free and top quality, there is a catch, and also you may be capable to guess what it’s in our trendy age of “freemium” apps: Advertisements. Do not let that dissuade you from making an attempt WPS Author—you won’t see an advert.
There isn’t any banner throughout the highest of the app—adverts solely seem whenever you wish to use choose options like printing or exporting to PDF. If you should do a type of issues, you will have to take a seat by means of a roughly 10-second advert, which unlocks the function for 30 minutes.
For those who like what WPS Author has to supply, you’ll be able to choose to eradicate adverts by paying a yearly subscription payment of $29.99, or you’ll be able to fork over $79.99 for a lifetime license—both possibility is affordable in comparison with an Workplace 365 subscription.
5. Microsoft Workplace Phrase On-line
Do not overlook Microsoft’s free various to the paid model of Phrase: Workplace On-line.
Like Google Docs, Microsoft Phrase On-line is a simplified, cloud-based model of Phrase. It lacks a number of the superior options of a locally-installed model of Phrase, however for customers who need a free model of Phrase, that is as shut as you may get.
Similarities between Google Docs and Phrase On-line are current all the best way right down to the interface, however with just a few 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.
Paperwork created in Phrase On-line are saved in Microsoft OneDrive, and real-time collaboration options like these in Google Docs can be found as properly.
One large plus in Phrase On-line’s favor is formatting: For those who create a doc in Phrase On-line after which import it to a neighborhood model of Microsoft Phrase, it is going to retain the formatting manner higher than if it is made in Google Docs.