Apple TextEdit

Version1.15(as of 6/25/2020)
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Rating:2.7  |  92 Votes

Main Features

  • Reads and writes files in either rich text or plain text format
  • Allows users to add graphics, pictures, and videos to rich text documents
  • Opens files saved in most popular text file formats, though some formatting may be lost

Software Overview

Screenshot of Apple TextEdit
Screenshot of Apple TextEdit

Apple TextEdit is a text editor developed by Apple and bundled with macOS. It is a simple word processor you can use to view and edit text documents.

TextEdit can read and write both plain text and rich text documents. The Rich Text Format (.RTF) allows you to format your document's text, adjusting its alignment, font, style, color, highlighting, and size. The text editor supports many different character encodings, including Unicode (UTF-8 and UTF-16), Western (Mac OS Roman), and Traditional Chinese (Mac OS). You can also add graphics, pictures, and videos to your document, converting its format to .RTFD (Rich Text Format with graphics).

While the program can open documents saved using most popular text file formats, such as Microsoft Office Open XML (.DOCX) and OpenDocument Text (.ODT), you'll likely lose some of your document's formatting and media when opening non-RTF or Plain Text Format files. For example, when opening a DOCX file, TextEdit will remove any pictures included in the document.

If necessary, you can save TextEdit documents using the Plain Text Format (by selecting Format → Make Plain Text from the TextEdit menu bar). Keep in mind, however, that doing so will remove any formatting and media you've added to your document.


All in all, Apple TextEdit is a handy, basic text editor for any Mac user. It is a useful tool for viewing and editing multiple types of text files. Just keep in mind that if you use TextEdit to open a DOCX or ODT file, the program will likely alter your document's formatting.

Primary File Type

rtf icon.RTFRich Text Format File

Supported File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.RTFRich Text Format File
.CFGConfiguration File
.CONFIGConfiguration File
.CSSCascading Style Sheet
.CSVComma-Separated Values File
.DOCMicrosoft Word Document (Legacy)
.DOCXMicrosoft Word Document
.HTMLHypertext Markup Language File
.INFOGeneric Information File
.LOGLog File
.ODTOpenDocument Text Document
.RTFDRich Text Format Directory File
.TXTPlain Text File

Additional Related File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.AStatic Library
.ARENAQuake 3 Engine Arena File
.ASActionScript File
.AWKAWK Script
.BMKNokia Device Bookmark File
.CELCelestia Script File
.CELXCelestia Script
.CFGWesnoth Markup Language File
.COMMANDTerminal Command File
.CONFGeneric Configuration File
.CRASHMac OS X Crash Log File
.DIZDescription in Zip File
.DSCText Description File
.DTDDocument Type Definition File
.ENTITLEMENTSMac App Sandboxing Entitlements File
.ERBRuby ERB Script
.ERRError Log File
.GALAXYBlizzard Galaxy File
.HAMLHaml Source Code File
.ICFZoom Router Configuration File
.IQYInternet Query
.JAVJava Source File
.JSONJavaScript Object Notation File
.KDSKD Player Skin File
.LLex Source File
.LISTJAR Index File
.LSTData List
.MWolfram Mathematica Language Package
.MANUnix Manual
.MARKDNMarkdown File
.MARKDOWNMarkdown Documentation File
.MDMarkdown Documentation File
.MDBACKUPiPhone Data Backup File
.MDINFOiPhone Backup Information File
.MDLWarcraft 3 3D Model Text File
.MEReadme Text File
.MENUQuake 3 Engine Menu File
.MISSIONVega Strike Mission File
.MNUTomTom Menu File
.MPSMathematical Programming System File
.MXMLFlex MXML Component
.NFOWarez Information File
.OCRFAXGrapper Fax Text File
.OUTOutput File
.P6Perl 6 Source Code File
.PANICKernel Panic File
.PHLKindle Popular Highlights File
.PIDProcess ID File
.PPPocket Physics Sketch File
.PROPERTIESMinecraft Properties File
.PYMPYM Macro Preprocessor File
.RPTGeneric Report
.RSTreStructuredText File
.RTXRich Text Document
.S2MLStarCraft 2 Map Localization File
.S2QHStarCraft 2 Localization Header File
.S2QLStarCraft 2 Unit Localization File
.SC2LOCALEBlizzard StarCraft 2 Localization File
.SCRIPTSUITEAppleScript Script Suite File
.SCRIPTTERMINOLOGYAppleScript Script Terminology File
.SHADERQuake 3 Engine Shader File
.SHTMHTML Server Side Include File
.SLSTGame Data File
.SMALIAndroid Smali Assembly Language File
.SOUNDSQuake 3 Engine Sound Definition File
.SPSQuake 3 Engine Speaker Definition File
.SQLStructured Query Language Data File
.SRCSource Code File
.SSCCelestia Solar System Catalog File
.STRINGSText Strings File
.SYSTEMVega Strike Virtual System File
.TRITriangle Mesh File
.URLURL Shortcut File
.UTF8Unicode UTF8-Encoded Text Document
.VNTMobile Phone vNote File
.WEBARCHIVESafari Web Archive
.YMLYAML Document
Updated 6/25/2020