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by | Dec 7, 2022

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Ara Koetts

Ara Koetts, a leading voice at Voxtury.com, specializes in AI content creation, blending technology with creativity. Her insights into AI's impact on storytelling and ethical considerations make her a pivotal figure for anyone exploring digital innovation. Ara's work is a guiding light in the dynamic world of content creation, inspiring confidence and curiosity in her readers.

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The best things in life are free, and that goes for text editors too.

There are a lot of free text editors out there on the internet, but we’ve boiled it down to this list of the best that are worth your while. If you are not familiar with what a text editor is, check out The Ultimate Guide to Online Text Editors first to get everything you need to know before jumping into what text editor to start with.

In this article, we’ll dive deep into what makes each of these editors unique, along with their strengths and weaknesses, to determine if they are the right match for you.

NOTE! This list will include both text editors and word processors for the sake of simplicity.

1. Voxtury

Voxtury is an easy-to-use online plain text and rich text editor made for students, educators, writers, bloggers, and developers and is supported for web, mobile, and tablets.

Voxtury Rich Text Editor

Features

Voxtury’s formatting features give users the ability to choose a font, size, BUI, color, quotes, code, alignment, spacing, bullet points, hyperlinks, insertions (images, tables, video, formulas, etc.), and changing cases.

It also provides a counter for characters, words, sentences, letters, symbols, paragraphs, and headings. Some special tools include a duplicate word finder and a changing text case tool.

User Experience

To use either Voxtury’s plain or rich text online editors, just go to the homepage, then choose Tools and select your editor to start using; there is no need to create an account. This UI experience is bright, easy to use, and extremely responsive, so it should be no problem to start.

Voxtury also dedicates a support team for your questions and issues that you can contact via email or phone number along with clear hours of operations on their contact page.

File Lifecycle

A file will not live past its browser session, meaning if you create a text file and then refresh the page, the file will reset to a blank page. This is because Voxtury prioritizes security and does not save your data in their servers or the browser.

However, you can save your file as a PDF to keep your latest changes. Unfortunately, Voxtury does not have a file upload feature, so any text will need to be created from scratch or copied/pasted from another source.

Security

Because Voxtury does not require a login, and the files are temporary and never saved, this online editor is one of the most secure options on this list. If you need to deal with sensitive data you do not want to be saved anywhere, then this editor is a great option.

2. Grammarly

Grammarly is a grammar assistant that allows you to create rich text files online through its web UI.

Grammarly Rich Text Editor

Features

Grammarly offers BUI, headings, links, and bullet points but does not offer the ability to change font, size, color, or use strikethroughs. Special tools include character/word counts, reading time counters, auto sentence suggestions, plagiarism checks, and a readability score.

User Experience

To use Grammarly, you’ll need to create an account. Once you sign up, go to your Account> MyGrammarly > Create New Text Document to get started. The actual editor is a full-screen editor with highly intuitive usability. The only downside is the constant premium Grammarly version advertisement on the side.

Grammarly also provides dedicated support with FAQ posts categorized by issue type and email contact.

File Lifecycle

Grammarly allows you to upload your existing .docx, .odt, .rtf, and .txt files to its editor to begin working on them. However, it can only save your file as a .docx. Files live under your Grammarly account until you decide to delete them manually at your leisure.

Security

As per Grammarly’s data collection policy: “Grammarly collects necessary information, such as username, email address, and contact and language preferences.” This data collection, combined with the fact it saves your files to its server, makes it a less secure option on the list.

3. Zen

Zen is a simple online rich text editor that stores your data in your local browser. It was designed to reduce clutter and help writers focus on working without distractions.

Zen Online Text Editor

Features

Zen offers limited, simple formatting options such as fonts, markdown options, and character and word counts. You can even change the theme color of the editor if you want.

Because it was designed to be minimal, Zen does not have a plethora of rich text features that others on the list might have, but this is an advantage if you are easily overwhelmed by features.

User Experience

You can get started right away with Zen by going to its homepage, which will show you the text editor immediately. Zen does not have a dedicated support team for issues, but it does provide an email address for contact.

File Lifecycle

You cannot upload a file for editing, but once you create a file in Zen, you can download it as a .txt file. The file will live on in your browser even if you refresh or close it. This means you can only work on one document at a time, and because there is no reset option, you will have to manually delete your text in the file or clear your browsing history, or open up a new browser entirely to start a new text document.

Security

According to Zen: “It’s 100% private and stores all the data only locally in your browser”. So Zen doesn’t collect profile data, but if someone were to open your browser, they would be able to see what you wrote unless you explicitly deleted it.

4. EditPad

EditPad is an online and native rich text, plain text, and HTML editor built for students, writers, bloggers, and developers.

Edit Pad Online Text Editor

Features

EditPad offers headings, BUI, blocks, alignments, insertions (tables, images), and hyperlinks, but you cannot choose a font. This editor’s tools include a character/word counter, plagiarism checker, paraphrasing tool, and reverse text tool. It can convert handwriting .png files to text and generate abstracts and conclusions based on your writing too. It supports multiple languages: ES, FR, NL, DE, RU, BR, JA, IT, PL, ID, KO, FI, HE, SV, TR, CS, AR, RO, TH, and NO.

User Experience

No account is necessary to begin. Click Start a New Page on the homepage to get to the text editor. It will default to the plain text editor first. There is a brief tutorial on how to use their features on the main page. Choose between plain text and rich text from the upper right-hand corner menu.

EditPad has a contact page but no real dedicated support. It is not often clear-cut how to use all its features, despite its front-page tutorial, which makes this editor more difficult to use than the others.

File Lifecycle

Similar to Voxtury, EditPad will not save your data on its server or the browser, so the moment you refresh your page, your text will disappear. You can upload .docx, .doc, .txt, and .pdf files to start editing with, but you can only download your EditPad work as .txt files.

Security

Because EditPad does not save your data, it makes it a secure online editor option.

5. Google Docs

Google Docs is an online word processor supported across all platforms that offers document creation and organization from its cloud-based services.

Google Docs Word Processor

Features

Google Docs offers a full suite of formatting features and a diverse set of tools, including word count and spell check, but no plagiarism or readability scores. Google extensions, comments, shareable access, and version history also top the list of most interesting features.

User Experience

To use Google Docs, you need to create a Google account which will automatically give you access to the Google Drive suite. Google Docs is one of the services under this suite. The downside is it might take some time to get familiar with all its features.

Because it’s backed by Google, Google Docs has plenty of documentation, FAQs, and community experts ready to answer direct questions or any issues you might have.

File Lifecycle

You can download your Google Doc file as .pdf, .docx, .odt, .txt, .html, .epub, or .rtf, and you can upload .txt, .docx, or .doc files. These files live in Google’s cloud, which gives them permanence until you decide to delete it. As of today, Google limits the number of files you can have to 15 GB per Account. If you wish to have more, you’ll have to pay additional storage fees.

Security

Anytime data is stored, it is never fully secure. Google servers technically secure data in Google Docs, but if someone hacks into those servers, your data will be exposed. However, Google works with many customers and businesses, so it is a known and trusted entity.

6. Hemingway App

Hemingway App is a rich text editor made primarily for writers and offers a free online version along with a paid desktop app.

Hemingway Editor

Features

This editor has a limited set of formatting options which includes bold, italics, headings, Inlines quotes, bullet points, numbers, and hyperlinking. It also offers special tools that track your file’s reading time and word, letter, character, sentence, and paragraph counts. Hemingway App tries to improve your writing by giving you a readability score and counts instances where your content may not be as effective as it could be.

User Experience

Using the editor is fairly simple. The homepage is the editor, so you can start using it immediately. The editor will already have a sample edit to give you a sense of how the editor works. There is some support for you in the form of FAQs and email contact.

File Lifecycle

Hemingway App does not allow you to upload a file, and there is no way to save your file either, so everything will have to be copied and pasted.

Files live only as long as the browser session is up. Once you refresh your browser page, your text will disappear forever, so be sure to keep the session open for as long as you are using the application.

Security

Your data is not stored anywhere and therefore remains safe from being captured by undesirable entities.

7. Calmly Writer

Calmly Writer is a rich text editor designed for simplicity to remove distractions for writers. It has a free online version along with a paid native application.

Calmly Writer

Features

Calmly Writer keeps things simple on the formatting side, allowing you only to change font size, font width, and font style. It also allows you to insert images and provides a word count as well.

User Experience

Designed for simplicity, Calmly Writer is straightforward to use. Once you land on its homepage, the editor is ready for you to start. Unfortunately, it does not have a support team for questions and issues, so they may not get resolved if you run into any issues.

File Lifecycle

Your file is stored on your browser and not on its servers. Calmly Writer specifies that they store your file in your browser’s temporary backups, which can be deleted at any time by your browser, so it is best if you do not rely on this autosave feature. Although you cannot upload a file to edit, you can download or save your file as a .txt, .htm, or .docx file to your local computer.

Security

Because files are stored in your browser, there is no guarantee they will be completely safe. Using sensitive data with this editor may not be ideal. However, not having your data saved to their servers is a plus.

8. ProWritingAid

ProWritingAid is a rich text editor for writers that offers a free online version and a paid native version. It is supported across all platforms and is designed to give reports on your writing.

ProWritingAid AI Writing Assistant Software

Features

ProWritingAid has no formatting features. Instead, it has a vast array of tools and reporting that analyzes your writing for improvements. These tools include word counts, repeated work tracker, sticky sentences checker, style scores, and grammar/spelling checker.

It is worth mentioning that the free version does not come with unlimited word count abilities or a plagiarism checker. This editor integrates with Microsoft Word as well.

User Experience

To use this editor, you need to sign up for an account. Once you do, the editor will be ready to be used. The UI is spaced out, but due to its large supply of reporting and analytical tools, ProWritingAid can become overwhelming if you do not understand every feature. When this happens, there are many tutorial videos, documentation, webinars, and a resource library to refer to. They also offer an email address to contact for further help.

File Lifecycle

You can upload .docx files to edit and save them as .docx files to your computer. Like other text editors on our list, ProWritingAid saves your files to your Account under their servers which means your file will live on until you decide to delete it.

Security

To use this editor, you must give up your profile data and store your files under the ProWritingAid servers, which means it is not a place you’ll want to write with sensitive data.

9. Evernote

EverNote is a note-taking application for rich text files for note-takers and writers. It offers an online web experience, desktop, and mobile app under a Freemium plan.

Evernote Note Taking App

Features

Evernote operates under a freemium plan, meaning some of its features are free while others are under a payment plan. Under the free plan, you can access Evernote on up to 2 devices, search through all your documents and upload up to 60 MB of notes per month.

Evernote’s formatting options include BUI, fonts, strikethroughs, highlighting, bullet points, font style, font size, color, hyperlinks, insert images, etc. It does not have analytic tools like other editors on the list, like plagiarism checkers or sentence improvement suggestions.

However, it does offer a large library of pre-created templates you can use to create documents. You can also tag your documents for easy searching, add attachments, make your document shareable via a link, add reminders to your documents, and even look at your note history.

User Experience

To use the online editor, go to Create an Account > Open a New File and start typing. To use the desktop or mobile app, you’ll need to download the app first and then log in through your Account. Overall, the experience is easy to use, but it will take some time to understand all its features.

Evernote has a support team for direct questions with lots of categorized documentation and tutorials.

File Lifecycle

A file will remain in your Account until you delete it. If you want to save the file, you’ll have to go to Print > Save as PDF, and you cannot upload a file directly to edit.

Security

Data is saved on Evernote servers under your Account and your native computer, so it is not the best option for sensitive data usage.

Conclusion

Now that you have all the information you’ll need on the best free text editors, it’s time to start using one for your writing. If you are looking for an easy-to-use text editor for sensitive data, Voxtury would be the best start. You can quickly use it to see if it will fit your needs for writing plain text or rich text.

If you want to learn more about online text editors, then head over to The Ultimate Guide to Online Text Editors article to brush up on how to best understand and utilize online text editors.

Plain-Text Editor
Rich-Text Editor
Duplicate Word Finder

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