Downloading Word for free is not possible, since the software is part of Microsoft Office, a software package sold for at least R $ 499 in single purchase or for monthly installments starting at R $ 24 in Office 365 mode. However, there are at least eight free alternatives to Word on the market for those who need to write texts on the computer and do not want to pay anything.
READ: 13 tools to make home office in isolation
Open source solutions or developed by companies with a different business model allow access to similar functions without having to pay a single dollar. Here are eight online programs or tools to replace the Microsoft text editor on your PC.
See eight free alternatives to Word to use on the PC Photo: Paulo Alves / TechTudo
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See also: home office: see tools for working at home on the coronavirus
Home office: see tools for working at home on the coronavirus
1. Microsoft Office Online
Office Online offers a web version of Word very similar to the conventional one. With free access, the service only requires the creation of a Microsoft account to be able to edit texts directly through the browser and save to the OneDrive cloud. It is also possible to download documents in .docx format to send by e-mail even without Word installed on the computer. The solution has some limitations when compared to the regular version, such as the lack of support for abstract creation. But, the main functions are there: text formatting, proofreading, header and footer editing, grammatical checking in Portuguese and even dictation.
Word Online best free alternative to conventional Word Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
To use the service, go to the Office website (office.live) and log in with a Microsoft account. It is also possible to create documents on the web through OneDrive (onedrive.live) or through the Chrome extension.
2. Google Docs (Google Drive)
Main rival of Office Online, Google Docs is also a viable option to replace Word. In addition to bringing several of the same functions to the production of texts, including automatic grammatical correction, the software has a strong integration with Google services, such as Google Translate to translate documents with one click, and advanced speech recognition for typing using your voice .
Google Docs can also work offline Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
In addition, the solution is superior to Word Online in the type of access, as it allows you to open and edit files also without internet. Google Docs is available on the web on a separate page (docs.google) and through Google Drive (drive.google).
The Zoho Docs word processor is an alternative that stands out for its design. The software works in the browser and has a clean look that concentrates all the tools in a menu on the side. It has basic functions such as page and text formatting and proofreading, but it does not support Portuguese spelling correction. Its highlights go to the focus mode, which highlights the portion of the currently edited text, and the night mode, which changes the color palette to blue and gray tones to mitigate the effects on the eyes in long work sessions.
Zoho Docs has a nice look and dark mode Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
To use, just visit the Writer page (www.zoho/pt-br/writer/) and create a free account. The Zoho Workplace professional package also has a free version, as long as the user already has his own domain.
The TextMaker text editor, part of FreeOffice, is an option for those who prefer a program installed on their computer. Totally free, the software operates without the need to be connected and provides useful functions, such as text exporter in PDF or ePub. It also looks very similar to the old Word 2007 and allows you to choose different appearance styles, including dark mode.
FreeOffice has a design similar to Word 2007 Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
However, its weakness is in the spell checker, which requires manual configuration to recognize texts in Portuguese and, even so, it does not work so well. To use the program, I only need to visit the FreeOffice TextMaker website (www.freeoffice/pt/freeoffice-textmaker) and download the program for Windows for free.
WPS Office is a package of office programs that has a robust free version. It features a nice design and tabbed interface to easily navigate between multiple documents. The tool offers 1 GB free in the cloud, an advanced spell checker with support for up to three simultaneous languages, including Portuguese, and some advertisements, but nothing that gets in the way of the usage experience.
WPS Office organizes documents in tabs Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
The set comes with a free PDF reader and brings downloads for Windows, Mac and Linux, in addition to synchronization with apps for Android, iPhone (iOS) and web version. To use, go to www.wps and download for free. However, I need to be patient, because the servers of Kingsoft, developer of the program, tend to offer low download speeds.
Most famous on Android and iOS mobile platforms, Polaris Office also has a desktop version for Windows and macOS. The software has an interface almost identical to that of Word and offers features such as integrated Google search, review mode and automatic saving in the cloud. Like WPS Office, it brings ads and allows you to store up to 1 GB free, as long as you register only one computer and two mobile devices.
Famous on cell phones, Polaris Office has a free PC version Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
It is also possible to link services like Google Drive, Dropbox, Box and OneDrive when the space runs out. On the other hand, the program has no Portuguese spelling correction. The free version of Polaris Office Cloud is available for download on the service page (www.polarisoffice/en/download).
The famous free software alternative LibreOffice remains the option to replace Microsoft Office on the computer. With free download for Windows, Mac and Linux and without display of advertisements, the Writer word processor that is included in the package offers basic editing tools, offline operation and compatibility with popular formats such as .docx, in addition to the open source .odt.
LibreOffice has a competent spell checker, but it does not synchronize data online Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
Its weak point is the lack of saving in the cloud or syncing with mobile apps. On the other hand, the integrated spell checker is competent to automatically revise Portuguese texts, although it is not updated very often. The latest version 6.4.2 of LibreOffice is currently available for download on the official website (www.libreoffice.org/download/download/).
Dropbox Paper is an option for users who are willing to go beyond the ordinary text editor and need advanced collaboration resources. Integrated in the Dropbox cloud, the tool always works online and allows you to easily add collaborators, just like in Word Online and Google Docs. Its differential lies in the block design and the ease of creating texts with a lot of multimedia content. It is possible to import images, photos, videos, graphics, presentations and even programming codes directly from online services.
Dropbox Paper ideal for collaborative texts with a lot of multimedia content Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
The platform also offers spell checking in Portuguese, but does not perform any automatic corrections. To access the service, simply create a Dropbox account and access Paper through the browser (www.dropbox/paper).
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