Google Apps and Office 365: comparing apples to oranges?
- By Scott Bekker
- Jun 30, 2011
It hasn't been all sunshine and rainbows for Microsoft's Office 365 launch.
In a June 27 blog post, Google took Microsoft's cloud on the day before it was set to be released, offering "365 reasons to consider Google Apps" over Office 365. The provocative post might be considered part of a time-honored tech tradition of raining on the competitor's parade. Google's position, which was written by Shan Sinha, a Google Apps product manager, actually boiled down to four points:
- "Office 365 is for individuals. Apps is for teams.
- "Office 365 is built for Microsoft. Apps is built for choice.
- "Office 365 is 11 different plans, three editions and two tiers. Apps is $5/month with no commitment.
- "Office 365 is about the desktop. Apps is about the Web."
What Microsoft Office 365 can and can't do
For the remaining 361 reasons, Google has put out a couple of Twitter requests for ammunition from its partner and customer communities and the suggestions have been rolling in. In the meantime, the blog entry offers a fairly useful comparison chart of Google Apps against the five main flavors of Office 365.
Google's main points aren't unfair, but it may be tough to compare some of Microsoft's Office 365 strengths as weaknesses. For instance, Office 365 offers flexibility and acknowledges users' online/offline realities. Office 365 also enables integration with the predominant-installed desktop productivity suite.
Microsoft's competitive bulldogs over at the Why Microsoft blog have yet to respond to Google's pointed barb. Maybe they're comfortable letting Office 365 speak for itself?
Scott Bekker is the editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.