Technology giant Microsoft has discontinued WordPad, which had been part of every Windows operating system for the last 28 years.

“Starting with this build, the WordPad and People apps will no longer be installed after doing a clean install of the OS. In a future flight, WordPad will be removed on upgrade. WordPad will not be reinstallable. WordPad is a deprecated Windows feature,” said the Windows Insider blog announcing the discontinuation of WordPad.

Microsoft had listed WordPad as a “deprecated” app in September 2023. The company defines deprecation as “the stage of the product lifecycle when a feature of functionality is no longer in active development and may be removed in future releases of a product or online service.” Microsoft is now recommending the use of Microsoft Word for rich text documents like .doc and .rtf and Windows Notepad for plain text documents like .txt.

WordPad included features from both Notepad and MS Word in terms of text editor functionality.

“WordPad’s initial target audience was individual users who didn't have access to MS Word but wanted something better than Notepad,” said Pareekh Jain, CEO at Pareekh Consulting. “A lot has changed in those 28 years, with new modes of text input in web and mobile apps, as well as increased penetration of MS Office. The utility of WordPad has declined.”

Computerworld