Differences Between Microsoft Word 2003 and Microsoft Word 2007 – An Overview

Microsoft Word being one among the most widely used Microsoft applications allows users to write and create, view, copy, paste, save, edit, share, and print text documents etc. Microsoft Word application rules the word-processing market as it allows users to beautify their text documents by inserting pictures and animated images, charts, diagrams, tables, figures, and shapes etc.; and by using text in different styles, fonts, colors, and languages etc. at the same time. Since its launch, Microsoft Word has greatly reduced users’ burden of creating multiple documents at a time, copying them to another word file, and running grammar & spell-check function etc. With the time, Microsoft Word (MS-Word) also progressed to new versions such as MS-Word 2003 and 2007. Below are some of the significant features that distinguish MS-Word 2007 and MS-Word 2007:


Microsoft-Word 2003 – It comprises several menu tabs as well as tool bars that include lots of buttons. These buttons/features can be customized to give command access.

Microsoft-Word 2007 – It uses a user-friendly interface known as ‘Ribbon’. It comprises 7 menu tabs viz. ‘Home’, ‘Page Layout’, ‘References’, ‘Mailings’, ‘Review’, and ‘View’. There is an 8th tab also called ‘Developer’ that is however turned off by the default settings. Every Ribbon tab contains different buttons along with drop down menus. However, compared to MS-Word 2003, the Ribbon interface in MS-Word 2007 is not customizable.

File Format:

MS-Word 2003 – It uses DOC file format for saving text documents. However, users will have to download a compatibility pack for opening DOCX files.

MS-Word 2007 – It uses DOCX file format, which is an open XML standard format. It is the widely used file format for opening XML files. The users also have the choice of saving their documents/files in DOC format.

Document Inspector:

MS-Word 2003 -It comprises ‘Remove Hidden Data’ add-in, which is a tool to remove document’s hidden or visible information including personal etc. However, the add-in does not a user make changes to document’s properties.

MS-Word 2007 – It comprises ‘Inspect Document’ command that is when executed gives a list of options including versions, comments, annotations, document properties, customized XML data, personal information, or revisions among others. The Inspect Document feature allows users to delete above mentioned options as per their requirements.

Quick Parts:

MS-Word 2003 – It comprises ‘AutoText’ function that enables users to define, edit, insert, and save text.

MS-Word 2007 – It comprises ‘Quick Parts’ that allows users to remain its text plain or add formatting or graphics. The feature will be available in ‘Insert’ tab.

Quick Access Toolbar:

Word 2003 – It comprises no such feature and a user has to go through the entire menu tab to get access to its frequently-used commands such as save, edit, or undo etc.

Word 2007 – It comprises ‘Quick Access Toolbar’ that is designed to save the commands used again and again overly by a user while creating a text document. Such commands or features could be anything from undo, repeat, clip art, or to save etc. You can get instant access to such commands or features by customizing your ‘Quick Access Toolbar’. You only need to add/insert your frequently used commands/features to the toolbar by just right clicking on them and then clicking on ‘Add to Quick Access Toolbar’.

Mail Merge Wizard:

MS-Word 2003 – It comprises ‘Mail Merge Wizard’ that does allow a user to send personalized messages. However, the wizard has serious issues with Microsoft Excel attachments. It means you will not be able to import your data for emailing from Microsoft Excel documents.

MS-Word 2007 – It has an improved ‘Mail Merge Wizard’ that allows a user to type and send personalized messages to all the recipients without requiring to go through the process of CC and BCC in the mail account. After you have typed your mail to all the recipients, the wizard would forward them to your Microsoft Outlook or Outlook Express outbox. Whenever you go online in your Microsoft Outlook, your Outlook will automatically send all the personalized messages to each of the addresses. Therefore, the wizard wonderfully saves you from typing letter or documents to each and every recipient with their individual information.

The comparison of features has brought us to the conclusion that MS-Word 2007 being the advanced word processor has a clear edge over MS-Word 2003. However, no matter which of the two software applications you have, you may experience problem with them anytime. For that matter, you can look for a Microsoft-certified technical support that resolves your issues online.