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Apple Wiki

TextEdit is a text editor, first featured in NeXTSTEP and OPENSTEP, and now distributed with Mac OS X and macOS following Apple's acquisition of NeXT.[1]


TextEdit replaced SimpleText, the text editor from classic Mac OS. TextEdit reads and writes documents in Rich Text Format and Rich Text Format with attachments as well as plain text and HTML, and can open (but not save) old SimpleText files. It also has access to the operating system's built-in spell-checking service. The version included in Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) added the ability to read and write documents in Microsoft Word format.

Formatted text, justification, and even the inclusion of graphics and other multimedia elements are supported by TextEdit, as well as its ability to read and write to different character encodings, including Unicode.

Mac OS X, as a Unix-based operating system, also includes emacs, vi and pico as well as other terminal-based text editors.

Internal builds[]

An internal TextEdit app has been seen being used by Apple staff on iPhones running iOS 8 and later, with similar functionality as the macOS version. It was also spotted on a staff iPad at the 2016 Worldwide Developers Conference. However, these mobile versions have yet to be released publicly.[2]


  1. Reasons to love TextEdit, a secret powerhouse of rich text by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld. 2016-02-08.
  2. TextEdit, The iPhone Wiki. Accessed 2021-09-17.

External links[]

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