The makers of Bean don’t make any grand claims about it - it’s a rich text editor, not an alternative to Word, they say. And they’re right. But what they modestly neglect to mention is that it’s a excellent rich text editor, and just what you might be looking for if you’ve always wished that TextEdit had a little bit more oomph.
I like Bean because it offers one vitally important feature that TextEdit lacks: a live word count. It also has alternate color schemes that you can switch between with one click, support for all the Cocoa goodness you’d expect in a Cocoa writing app, and a nice toolbar control for quick access to the built-in Dictionary application.
Bean is never going to compete with Word or Abiword, but Bean’s developers are perfectly upfront: that’s not the intention. Rather, they’ve spotted a small niche for something like TextEdit but with a few extras. That’s Bean, and it fills that niche very well.