Years ago, Microsoft Office was the one-stop shop for your work and personal needs. From productivity software to chat and storage, Microsoft owned the marketplace. There were a few competitors but none as highly intertwined than Microsoft. Fast forward two plus decades later and a new competitor is really making a splash: Google Apps.
With many business leaving Microsoft Office for (possible) greener pastures with Google, the highly debated conversation exists between the two powerhouses. Has the seasoned Microsoft team lost the battle to the fast-paced Google platform or does Microsoft still have the edge?
When evaluating the two products, its hard to find any substantial differences for one product over the other as they are very similar on all fronts. However, when diving into each product, there are a few items that stick out just a bit more than the others.
Google Chat vs Lync
A major victory for Google is with the chat & hangouts functions. GChat, as it is commonly known, is a major upgrade over the dinosaur that is Microsoft Lync. Google Chat allows you to have multiple conversations inside of your email plus has the easy ability to video chat. Google Chat works for individuals not in your organization as well.
Google: Win 1
Desktop Apps vs Cloud Apps
The ability to have applications on the desktop is a major win for Microsoft. The sense of comfort that individuals find with an icon on the desktop hard to devalue. With Google Docs being internet based, users cannot open their computer and work on a document on the plane (that doesnt have wifi); the convenience is a major win for Microsoft.
Microsoft: Win 1
Excel vs Sheets
Another major win for Microsoft is Excel. While Google Sheets have made significant strides in their product and allowed it to be a more powerful force, companies that are very excel heavy are not as likely to make the switch. Excel has been ingrained in our workings for years and some users have years of experience and training on the product. Try to convince a major data company to make the switch from Excel and its not probable.
Microsoft: Win 2
Like Google has made improvements to sheets, Microsoft has made efforts to improve their realtime collaboration but it isn’t nearly good enough to hang with Google. Google collaboration efforts are night and day above that of Microsoft’s. While the desktop applications may be a preference, what is easier than sharing a Word Processing Document on Google Drive and having the entire team update it; no more saving over someones work or passing it along waiting for the next individual to finish his or her portion.
Google: Win 2
In conclusion, both products have similar workings and one may not be better than the other depending on where your needs land. It is fair to say that Google saw an opportunity to develop its App to compete with the monopoly of Microsoft and have succeeded in creating a fair fight.
While Microsoft cannot be counted out or looked at as the inferior product (which at no case it is), the competitive pressure is forcing Microsoft to innovate at a faster pace than ever before. While Microsoft Office and Google Apps battle it out, users are the real winners as having options is better than having no (or one) option.