Microsoft is killing off WordPad in a future version of Windows, which will likely be Windows 12. According to sources familiar with the development, the next big release of Windows is “Windows 12“, which is scheduled to be announced sometime in the fall of 2024. It would be the first version of Windows to ship without WordPad.
WordPad has been in Windows for 28 years, and Microsoft has stopped updating the app since Windows 7. The last big update to WordPad was released in October 2009 with Windows 7’s new Ribbon UI.
Microsoft has focused more on Notepad and Word in the past several years. As a result, WordPad has been an optional Windows feature since 2020, when Microsoft shipped Windows 10’s Creators update. In an update to the support document, Microsoft announced that it will replace WordPad in a future release of the OS.
The company hasn’t revealed when WordPad will stop working in Windows, but the support document references “a future release of Windows”. It’s likely Windows 12 will be the end of the road for WordPad, a basic text-editing app with more capabilities than Notepad but less than Microsoft Word.
“WordPad is no longer being updated and will be removed in a future release of Windows,” Microsoft noted in the document. “We recommend Microsoft Word for rich text documents like .doc and .rtf and Windows Notepad for plain text documents like .txt,” the company added.
WordPad is not as popular as NotePad or MS Word, but it has its fan following in the tech community.
WordPad is the only lightweight Microsoft app for writing notes with screenshots/images. It doesn’t require powerful hardware and works without connecting to the internet.
“I’m fine with no updates to WordPad, but it will suck if they remove it. Why not remove Candy Crush if they want to reduce bloatware in Windows?” one of our readers questioned Microsoft’s decision.
We’re not surprised by Microsoft’s decision to depreciate and remove WordPad in a future release of Windows, given that the program has not been getting any updates and has been an optional Windows feature since February 2020.
If you do not use the app, you can head to the Settings app, visit the optional features/apps page to find ‘WordPad’, and then select the app and remove it from the system.