Bare Bones Software sunsetting TextWrangler, focusing fully on BBEdit text editor development

Bare Bones Software announced this week it will no longer develop new versions of its free code editor app TextWrangler. While the software will continue to work barring any future show stopping bugs, Bare Bones says it won’t release updates to TextWrangler for the next version of macOS.

With TextWrangler going away, Bare Bones instead points users to their main text editor product BBEdit which now has the same feature set without requiring a license:

What you may not know is that last July, we released BBEdit 11.6. You can use this version unlicensed, forever, for free. Without a license, BBEdit now includes all of the features that TextWrangler offers, plus quite a few others. That’s right. You no longer have to pick between them.

Bare Bones began notifying TextWrangler users about their development plans this week ahead of the expected preview of macOS 10.13 at WWDC 2017 in June. In the communication, Bare Bones Software promises that BBEdit will continue to be fully supported on the next macOS update as TextWrangler is retired.

TextWrangler was originally introduced as the cheaper alternative to BBEdit in 2003 before it replaced BBEdit Lite as the free alternative with fewer features in 2005.

When Bare Bones Software introduced the free version of BBEdit last summer, the company signaled that it would eventually replace TextWrangler as the same feature set existed even after the 30-day free trial. This week’s communication to customers confirms that this development transition is happening now.

BBEdit is available to try free for one month and costs $49.99 for an individual license. Unlike TextWrangler, BBEdit is no longer sold through the Mac App Store, although previous BBEdit Mac App Store customers can upgrade for $29.99.

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