Comparison of online LaTeX editors

As most researchers and students of technical degrees, I have used LaTeX for a long time. One of the newer LaTeX-related innovations is the possibility to use online editors to manage your LaTeX projects. Two of the most prominent sites for this are ShareLaTeX and writeLaTeX, which are very similar. Recently I was asked about the difference between the two after I had recommended ShareLaTeX which I was using myself, and had no luck finding a good overview of the differences between the two services. Consequently I have tried to compile a description of the differences.




Real time collaboration
Change history
Max # users for free
Max # users paid
Open source
Sync to Dropbox
Mobile device support
Real time preview
Auto-complete LaTeX
  1. Requires theĀ 15$/month plan
  2. ShareLaTeX gives you 11 users for 15$/month and unlimited for 30$/month
  3. At least not as far as I could see
  4. Requires paid plans: Minimum 15$/month for ShareLaTeX and 7$/month for writeLaTeX
  5. I tried on my Android phone, and while it might work on larger screens, using a phone does not work.
  6. The auto-complete in ShareLaTeX is more advanced. For example: If you write begin{tabular}, ShareLaTeX will give you the end{tabular} and insert the required parameters for the begin-command. writeLaTeX will only auto-complete your begin{tabular} line (backslashes omitted due to MathJax issues)


There is no clear winner between the two services which are both really nice! The paid plans for writeLaTeX are a bit more affordable, and it gives a few more free features. There is a student discount plan for ShareLaTeX which makes the plans quite similar in price. Personally I like the interface in ShareLaTeX more, and the compiled pdf-files shown in the browser looks better in ShareLaTeX (you have the option to choose between different pdf-viewers).

If I have missed a feature or in general made any mistakes in my comparison, please write a comment and I will fix whatever mistakes I have made.

4 thoughts on “Comparison of online LaTeX editors”

  1. Hello David,

    Firstly thank you for this write up, we are always keen to hear from our customers and are very pleased that you are enjoying using ShareLaTeX.

    The feature list is correct. We are particularly proud of our backup system which automatically detects any changes and syncs these into the cloud each time a user compiles a project or leaves the system, even on the event of a crash!

    The synchronising of files in this manner with DropBox has been a particular success – we have heard from several relieved students who initially thought they may have lost hours of work following a computer crash only to discover everything had been backed up prior to disaster!

    Should you have any queries or if we can help with anything ShareLaTeX related, please do not hesitate to contact us on

    Many thanks,

    The ShareLaTeX Team.

  2. (Disclaimer: I’m one of the developers of VerbTeX)

    Another online LaTeX editor that might interest you is available at which not only supports online editing but is also integrated in all big mobile platforms (Android, iOS, Windows8).

    The app is called VerbTeX which offers you additional functions like Dropbox/Box synchronization, collaboration, autosave, etc.

  3. What is the advantages of using Verbosus? Since Dropbox-sync, collaboration and autosave is also included in ShareLatex and WriteLatex, it does not look like there is a good reason – but I might be missing something?

    1. It seems that you have a platform capable of offline editing for mobile devices. Besides I have not fully searched the net, I couldn’t find an app for sharelatex in my iPad when not connected.

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