DOC vs. DOCX: What Is the Difference? 7 Facts

Microsoft Word, which is part of the Microsoft Office suite, makes files with the DOC and DOCX file extensions. This is why these two file types are so popular.

What is .DOC?

When a file or document ends in “.DOC,” it means that it is in text format.

The file can be changed and is a working document, unlike a PDF or JPEG, which can’t be changed if there is text in them unless they are changed to a.DOC.

What is .DOCX?

If you just made a new Word document or if the document you are looking at was made after 2007, you will know.

Your file name gets DOCX added to the end.


Any file that ends in “.docx” is a Microsoft Word Open XML Formatted Document. These files are used for many things, like reports, resumes, letters, documentation, taking notes, newsletters, and presentations.

Even though DOCX files almost always have some text in them, they can also have graphics, objects, and creative formatting. A Microsoft Word Open XML file is a DOCX file.

Key Differences Between DOC and DOCX

DescriptionThe DOC is the first version released by Microsoft Word until the 2003 version.DOCX is a default extension of word2007 and the versions after that
Document StorageIn Doc, there is a binary file to store the documents, which also contain relevant information and formatting.A zip file in DOCX also has all the XML files pertaining to the document.
NatureThe nature of DOC is basically proprietaryThe nature of DOCX is an open standard
SuitabilityDOC is needed if pre-2007 versions of the word will use the fileDOCX is needed if the post-2007 version of a word will use the file
File sizeThe file size of DOC is greater if we compare DOC file Vs. DOCXThe DOCX files are lighter and smaller in size
OpeningDOC extension can easily be opened in the newer versionDOCX extension can be opened in the older version
SupportThird-party office application does not support DocDOCX is supported by most of the third-party office applications

DOC vs. DOCX Similarities

  • Whether it is DOC or DOCX, both are the extensions of MS Word files.
  • Both of these extensions are used to store images, texts, tables, charts, personal documents, and many more.

DOC vs. DOCX Pros and Cons

Pros and Cons of DOC

Pros of DOC

  • You can change graphics, text, formatting, and how you want to print a DOC file. DOC files are also used to make files because they are easy to use and can be opened by most users.

Cons of DOC

  • Because DOC files are bigger, the user has to turn their information into binary codes and store it in large, complicated files.
  • To use MS Word DOC and other formats, you have to pay, which could be quite expensive. There are also free word processors that can do everything that Doc can.

DOCX Pros and Cons

Pros of DOCX

  • Since DOCX files are smaller and lighter, they are perfect for saving on a computer.
  • The file could get messed up while it’s being sent, but DOCX is pretty stable and hard to mess up.
  • When DOCX images are compressed, they have better quality and work better.

Cons of DOCX

  • Since DOCX is the newest and most updated version of Microsoft Word, it costs more than older versions.
  • The free version of the format doesn’t have all of the features and has a lot of restrictions.

Looking For an Easier Solution to Your Collaboration Frustrations?

When working in Microsoft Word, your email inbox can quickly get full of revised copies of documents that coworkers send back and forth.

John made a change and sent an email with the subject “See attached updated” to let everyone know.

Then Lucy changed something, sent an email 30 minutes later with the subject “updated version attached,” and so on for days.

One way to let you know when a new version is ready and needs your attention is to send you an email with the updated version.

But it can also fill up your inbox with internal emails with just one line or, in some cases, nothing at all.

You could also send them over a group chat channel like Slack or Microsoft Teams, but you should make a separate channel for document updates so you don’t miss one or lose it in an open channel when other people start talking around the document being sent.


There must be a way to work together when your inbox is full and your Slack channel keeps telling you that you have unread messages.

You can put your new versions somewhere quiet where there won’t be any other noise, so you can quickly check on them and look at them whenever you want.

The solution is Simul Docs, a great new app that was made just for this problem.

Simul was created specifically for Microsoft Word and you to make it easier for you to collaborate.

First of all, Simul will keep and organize all of your work versions in an easy-to-use toolbar that you can access from anywhere with an internet connection (or offline if you do a quick download before losing your connection).

When a new version of your document is made, Simul will save it automatically with a version number that makes sense.

The first version is called 0.0.1, the second version is called 0.0.2, the third version is called 0.0.3, and so on. Making it easy to keep track of how many versions have been made and which is the most recent.

But what if the author wants to add more notes or comments, like “Tim, this is my last round of changes before we send it to the client?” Don’t worry, Simul lets you add comments and notes to any version, so your team can always see what’s going on.

Simul will keep track of any comments, updates, or changes you make to a version. This means you don’t have to remember to turn on tracked changes. Isn’t that pretty cool?

So, a program that automatically handles version control, saves and keeps your files, and keeps track of all your edits and changes sounds too good to be true or too hard to use or install.

Don’t worry, it’s not. It’s called Simul Docs, and it’s so easy to use that we learned how to use it in 3 minutes after reading the instructions in the app.

It just makes sense, just like an Apple product. It’s clean and easy, with everything you need in one place and nothing too complicated.

If you’re still not sure, go to Simul and sign up for their free trial.

Simul Docs has made it much easier for people to work together.

Choosing Between DOC & DOCX

Most of the time, DOCX is the better choice. Because of the format, files are smaller and lighter, making them easier to read and move. Office Open XML is an open standard, so almost any word processor, including Google Docs, can read it.

The only reason to use the older DOC file format is to recover files that are more than ten years old or to work with a word processor that hasn’t been updated in a while.

In any case, you should save the file again in DOCX or another modern format, like ODF, to make conversion easier.

Frequently Asked Questions

Google Docs & DOCX Compatibility

People often want to know if Google Docs works with Docx, and the answer is yes! Microsoft Word files can be opened and changed in Google Docs. You can also save and export your Google Doc as a.docx file, which is a Word document.


Is a Word Document a .DOC File?

Yes, but also no. Most newer versions of Microsoft software save files in a format called DOCX. Older versions of Microsoft saved files in a format called “DOC.” Word can open.DOC files, but the default file extension depends on which version of Word you are using.

How Can I Tell if a Word Document is DOC or DOCX?

If you follow the steps below, you can check the file extension of any Windows 10 file or document.

  1. Hit the Start button in the taskbar to start the file explorer. Then click Windows System, and then click File Explorer.
  2. Use File Explorer to get to the View tab.
  3. If you click the box next to “File name extensions,” file extensions will be shown.

When Was DOCX Introduced?

The DOCX format was introduced with Microsoft Word 2007, and it is still used today.

Are DOC and DOCX the Same?

No, DOC is an older format that stores files in a binary format, while DOCX is a newer format that stores files in a zip format.

Is DOCX a Word Document?

Yes, a DOCX file is a Microsoft Word text file.

Which Format Is Better, DOC or DOCX?

DOCX is better because it is a newer version with many new features and options, such as smaller file sizes, less chance of file corruption, dependability, and many more.

Can I Change DOCX to DOC?

Yes, if you open your DOCX file in MS Word 2007 or 2010, you can change it to a DOC file. Browse to the file, click convert, and the file will be changed right away. You can save the DOCX file by clicking “Save As.”


The most commonly used file types in Microsoft Office are DOC and DOCX. Both of these are used to change photos, text, and other data and save the changes.

The main difference between DOC and DOCX is that DOC is an older version that was used until Word 2003, while DOCX was introduced with Word 2007 and later.

In DOC, the document is saved in a binary file, but in DOCX, it is saved in a zip file. People who use older versions of MS Word can use the DOC format, but the new DOCX format has more options and functionality.

You can also change the extension of your file to whatever you want. For instance, it’s easy to change your file from DOCX to DOC.

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