In the word processing world on the Mac, Apple’s own Pages is a great alternative to MS Word but without all the features and clutter of the Microsoft behemoth. However, even further away from this is the rather well built Bean…and it’s free!

Bean is clean unobtrustive approach to word processing that handles rtf, ftd, plain text, webarchive formats well – it also has it own .bean format. One thing to note however, is that bean is only partially compatible with MS Word (.doc and .docx formats) and has issues with images and some formatting. Its also incompatible with .pages files, but so is every other word processor!

Bean features split-window editing, full screen editing, built-in search using regular expression, free-form headers and footers, template documents with boilerplate text and full intregration with OS X’s cocoa apps such as the dictionary.

Overall, whilst Bean does not have all the features of MS Word or Pages, it is a lightweight solution to your basic word processing needs.


3 votes, average: 3.67 out of 53 votes, average: 3.67 out of 53 votes, average: 3.67 out of 53 votes, average: 3.67 out of 53 votes, average: 3.67 out of 5 (3 votes, average: 3.67 out of 5)
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Bean v2.4.5

OS X 10.4+, PowerPC only

Bean v3.1.1

OS X 10.5, PowerPC only

Bean v3.2.5

OS X 10.5-10.11, Intel only

Bean v3.2.9

MacOS 10.12 Sierra only

Bean v3.2.10

MacOS 10.13 High Sierra only

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