Google takes pot shots at Microsoft's Office 365

Microsoft plans to officially launch its cloud-based Office 365 software suite on Tuesday but one of its main rivals decided today to launch a bit of a preemptive strike against the software's launch. In a post on Google's official blog site, the company's Apps Project Manager

work with multiple people in the same document." Also while Office 365 is based around PCs with the Windows operating system, Google Apps "are designed to work well on any device, on any operating system." Office 365 also will have multiple versions with various price points while Google Apps have just one edition and one price; $5 per user. Ultimately Sinha states, "You can't just take legacy, desktop software, move some of it to a data center and call it 'cloud.' Apps was born for the web and we've been serving hundreds of millions of users for years."

Microsoft is scheduled to hold a press event in New York City on Tuesday morning to officially launch Office 365. The specific location for the press event will be the Skylight Soho which is also the same location that Microsoft used a few years ago to officially launch Windows 7. Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer will be in attendance.

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I don't care whose is better...I'm just glad that there is some more competition...It will force the other to keep improving. They are two large companies with a lot of money. It will be interesting to see what both Office's look like in a couple of years.
For me personally, I use Google Docs or Libreoffice at home, and Microsoft Office 2007 at work. I only use like 5% of the features anyways lol So the free alternatives are good enough. And my work gets copies of Office, so we use that there. If we need to share a document, then we use Google Docs.

I don't care - I don't trust any company to have the market to themselves. The only thing that saddens me is that this was an opportunity for Corel, and so far as I know they're doing nothing in this arena.

As a SharePoint technical lead I have to admit, you have nothing to compete against this son. Now take out that annoying auto-seach or whatever from your search engine

Funny to see how y'all are doing exactly what the Google guy wanted.. fighting over an electronic document host... pathetic!!!
Google Docs is great!! Office 365 is great!!... That's it.. Choose whatever the hell you want and stop this bickering bulls**** As an IT Manager in charge of 100s of PCs, I choose Office 365, because we already have investments in the full MS Platform. For those of you who don't, by all means choose Google Docs if you want to do so. My users know Word, Excel etc., so why the heck would I want them to learn a new program to enter the same type of info they're used to. Office 365 is a perfect fit for anyone who uses Office 2007 or higher... and no troll can argue against that!!!

Correct me if I'm wrong, but Office 365 contains SharePoint 2010 as part of it, and SharePoint 2010 *does* allow multiple user document editing via Office 2010. Google probably needs to fact check, eh?

KingCrimson said,
I predict Office 365 will do 10x better then Google Docs.

Easily. People know Word, Excel etc. Using Google Apps means people need to relearn where tools are etc. You also really can't beat Outlook sitting ontop of an Exchange environment. Microsoft software at its best!

I hate Google. Not because of their products or services. It is because of their fanbase. During my schooling my productivity was severely hampered because my classmates were all Google whores. I struggled for hours trying to edit documents on Google Docs and they still didn't look right.

Being able to use the MS Office I've grown to know and love over all these years and in every business I've ever worked for, still? but in the Cloud? Yeah, Google should take pot shots, and probably a couple of straight shots. This is gonna hurt bad.

Many People dont seem to know what Office 365 really is, it is not just Office.
- Exchange 2010 Online (Enterprise Class features, Global Rules and Filtering, MailTips, Legal Hold, Device Policies, Groups etc,etc,etc)
- Lync 2010 Online (OCS) - Conferencing etc.. (Policy controllable)
- SharePoint 2010 Online - Blogs, Document Storage, WebBuilder etc...
- Office Professional Plus 2010 - By Subscription (On some plans)
The Major difference between Office 365 and other offerings is that it supports the best abilities of the platform you are using at any one time by combining the Cloud with real local software and caching, So when I'm on a plane with my laptop I can still work on documents and email and they just synchronise when I reconnect. No thinking involved, It blurs the difference between on-premise (local) infrastructure and Cloud. If I'm using Firefox in a webcafe I can access and edit my documents in the browser, If I'm using my personal PC, I can use the rich features of Office locally installed.

DukeWars said,
Many People dont seem to know what Office 365 really is, it is not just Office.
- Exchange 2010 Online (Enterprise Class features, Global Rules and Filtering, MailTips, Legal Hold, Device Policies, Groups etc,etc,etc)
- Lync 2010 Online (OCS) - Conferencing etc.. (Policy controllable)
- SharePoint 2010 Online - Blogs, Document Storage, WebBuilder etc...
- Office Professional Plus 2010 - By Subscription (On some plans)
The Major difference between Office 365 and other offerings is that it supports the best abilities of the platform you are using at any one time by combining the Cloud with real local software and caching, So when I'm on a plane with my laptop I can still work on documents and email and they just synchronise when I reconnect. No thinking involved, It blurs the difference between on-premise (local) infrastructure and Cloud. If I'm using Firefox in a webcafe I can access and edit my documents in the browser, If I'm using my personal PC, I can use the rich features of Office locally installed.

Exactly.

While I was testing it, I used it with the (x64) version of Office 2010 Professional Plus I *already had*. That, in and of itself, is a major game-changer; if you have any recent version of Office, you can use it (In short, you throw nothing away you have already.) Can Google Apps say that?

Different strokes for different folks. Let's not debate on open source vs closed source. We are talking feature for feature dollar for dollar.

MS wins hands down for compatibility and features. You can give me something for free but if free comes at the cost of features then it does cost me something in the end.

My cousin who works for a large college did evaluate Google Apps/Docs and did not find them compelling enough to make the switch and have also evaluated Office 365 along with the other free offerings MS has been providing to Colleges and college students. I think they will most likely choose Office 365.

I am closed minded where I only pick MS products. I am considered a "Power Office" user so I guess in that sense I am biased. Just like there are many good offerings for PDF software I still choose Acrobat X Pro. More money and it does what I want it to do and I have been familiar with it since 6.0.

Google apps is great. Much. much better. I use it at work to collaborate and it is much easier. Though I am not a big fan of Microsoft online. They are just all over the place with no clear direction.

Boyd Petersen said,
Google apps is great. Much. much better. I use it at work to collaborate and it is much easier. Though I am not a big fan of Microsoft online. They are just all over the place with no clear direction.
How about trying the product before bashing it?

Hands down Google, the "collaboration" we managed to achieve using your buggy, slow and problematic Apps is not something I would EVER want the pleasure of enduring again.

I wouldn't care what the price is, I just want to do my work with my team and get it done...something Google Apps could not facilitate.

Alansonit said,
Hands down Google, the "collaboration" we managed to achieve using your buggy, slow and problematic Apps is not something I would EVER want the pleasure of enduring again.

I wouldn't care what the price is, I just want to do my work with my team and get it done...something Google Apps could not facilitate.

I had the same experience. Microsoft is much farther along in that respect.

Enron said,

I had the same experience. Microsoft is much farther along in that respect.

I beg to differ. Google apps collaboration is fast, sleek, and provides real time collaboration for the users at the business I work at.
Being able to work on a document or spreadsheet and be able to see what the other person is editing is fantastic and something that we couldn't live with out.

However, when we tried Microsoft's offering documents being worked on by multiple people at the same time were having problems, it was slow and clunky.
Despite those downsides it seemed to be more compatible in terms of formatting and such. Hence it seemed to work better for our users who a little more hardcore when it comes to excel and word.

Enron said,

I had the same experience. Microsoft is much farther along in that respect.

Agreed.

In fact, did anyone that was busy slamming Office365 actully try the beta?

I did - and not because I needed to evaluate it for my own use I took the beta for a drive because a lot of small-businesses (especially locally) either have (or are considering) Comcast Business Class (which will shift to Office365 over the coming six months). And while you *can* use Office WebApps with it, you can easily use Office 2007 or later (if you already have it). While the Office365 beta was tested using Microsoft Online Services, it's not just a service that Microsoft itself will be hosting, any more than Azure is. There will be third-party MSPs offering Office365 (and Azure as well), just as there are MSPs and ASPs offering Exchange hosting today.

Finally, I *still* get more requests to save documents as PDF as opposd to ODF - both of which Word exports without a quibble. (And I came to Word, and from WordPerfect no less, because Word had better compatiility with WordPerfect document formats than WordPerfect itself did - and kicked butt in terms of performance besides. And this was WordPerfect for Windows vs. Word for Windows.)

lordcanti86 said,
What did people expect Google to say? "Hey, Office 365 is great! You should totally use it over our stuff!"?

Or they could choose not to acknowledge them publicly. Or not directly attack them.

I think I should weigh in as well. I work for a local college and we are considering Office 365 as an offering that will be rolled in with the cost of tuition. I have talked with a number of my counterparts and they are considering it as well. Google docs was evaluated, and found lacking in some key areas. I just wanted to make the point that not just businesses are looking at doing this.

So basically for $6 per month I get access to Office Web Apps and Exchange. No Office 2010 Professional Plus. Nope, you have to have enterprise plans. Over priced, legacy and boring.

azure.sapphire said,
So basically for $6 per month I get access to Office Web Apps and Exchange. No Office 2010 Professional Plus. Nope, you have to have enterprise plans. Over priced, legacy and boring.

I'll assume that you have no knowledge of what Office 365 actually is, from what i've read it's meant to complement Office, not replace it. I have Office 2010 Professional Plus and get access to Office Web Apps but not exchange.

Basically you pay for the exchange support which is the only thing I don't get access to. So £3.74 a month or paying over £300 for Office Professional with no access to Office Web Apps. I know which one I would choose if I didn't have Office 2010 Professional Plus.

neo158 said,

I'll assume that you have no knowledge of what Office 365 actually is, from what i've read it's meant to complement Office, not replace it. I have Office 2010 Professional Plus and get access to Office Web Apps but not exchange.

Basically you pay for the exchange support which is the only thing I don't get access to. So £3.74 a month or paying over £300 for Office Professional with no access to Office Web Apps. I know which one I would choose if I didn't have Office 2010 Professional Plus.

Actually, I took part in the beta. I was not talking about the enterprise edition.
http://www.microsoft.com/en-us...endar.aspx#fbid=Dw3wwx7uRir

If it were to be successful, it needed to replace Office. That is why it will fail. Sure, you can lease Office Professional Plus, but most enterprise users will already have it. As for Exchange, I frankly, could do without it. I don't need to spend $6 per month for 25gigs of storage (up to 35mb attachments) and a bunch of other items that tie in.

google docs is somewhat office 1995-ish. bash microsoft all they want, but MS really knows how to get corporate customers. in the corporate world, change is NOT good, compatibility, compatibility, compatibility is the king!

leo221 said,
google docs is somewhat office 1995-ish. bash microsoft all they want, but MS really knows how to get corporate customers. in the corporate world, change is NOT good, compatibility, compatibility, compatibility is the king!

It's a shame so many businesses and governments around the world are turning to alternatives like Libre Office then isn't it.

Flawed said,

It's a shame so many businesses and governments around the world are turning to alternatives like Libre Office then isn't it.

Yes.

Flawed said,

It's a shame so many businesses and governments around the world are turning to alternatives like Libre Office then isn't it.

You're seriously delusional.

Looks like Google is getting worried, and it should be. Google docs offers some interesting options, but it is mostly an inferior product.

autobon said,
Looks like Google is getting worried, and it should be. Google docs offers some interesting options, but it is mostly an inferior product.

Microsoft is the one getting worried, for it has the most to lose. Office, along with Windows, are the two products keeping the company afloat. Why do you think 365 has been released? In response to the Google threat of course.

In the end though, Office is losing marketshare and mindshare as users and businesses alike turn to Libre Office and Google Docs. The question is, how is Microsoft going to absorb those mammoth loses from WM7 and Bing without the Office cashcow?

Flawed said,

Microsoft is the one getting worried, for it has the most to lose. Office, along with Windows, are the two products keeping the company afloat. Why do you think 365 has been released? In response to the Google threat of course.

In the end though, Office is losing marketshare and mindshare as users and businesses alike turn to Libre Office and Google Docs. The question is, how is Microsoft going to absorb those mammoth loses from WM7 and Bing without the Office cashcow?


I think you should look again. Microsoft isn't afraid of anything right now. Microsoft was simply trying to make a more affordable version of Exchange, which to my knowledge is the world's standard cloud based document sharing system. Exchange and sharepoint together are probably the biggest social document sharing system in the world. Office 365 needed to be more affordable because it is meant for the small business userbase. Office 365 is NOT in any way a response to Google Apps. It is Microsoft listening to their customers, who wanted the ability to edit their documents on almost any computer, who wanted a version of exchange for their small business, but couldn't pay the fee for Exchange. Get your facts straight man.
Also WP7 better be making them a good bit of prophit, because i better not have paid $99.99USD a year to develop for a dying OS. Oh wait, that's right WP7 has only been out for 5 months, how can it have maid any prophet when at the moment very few people know about WP7.

Ha ha at 3 of the 4 posters! You poor people, that you feel the need to defend a company that does exactly the same to other companies!
@DreadBoat89 when last have you used Google Docs or have you used it at all? Anyway, still think you're all pretty funny. Just use what serves your purpose and stop always defending MS, it's like a stuck record on this site!

Farstrider said,
Ha ha at 3 of the 4 posters! You poor people, that you feel the need to defend a company that does exactly the same to other companies!
@DreadBoat89 when last have you used Google Docs or have you used it at all? Anyway, still think you're all pretty funny. Just use what serves your purpose and stop always defending MS, it's like a stuck record on this site!
+1. You'd probably get a more intelligent response from a brick wall than from most people on this site.

Farstrider said,
Ha ha at 3 of the 4 posters! You poor people, that you feel the need to defend a company that does exactly the same to other companies!
@DreadBoat89 when last have you used Google Docs or have you used it at all? Anyway, still think you're all pretty funny. Just use what serves your purpose and stop always defending MS, it's like a stuck record on this site!

Some who makes sense. Thanks for posting.

+1
LIke you say, most of them have probably never even used Google Docs. They just jump to the defence of Microsoft regardless.

Google Docs renders my ODF documents perfectly, unlike Microsoft office. Hell, MS office can't even implement its own full OOXML spec.

MS Lose32 said,
+1. You'd probably get a more intelligent response from a brick wall than from most people on this site.

Sigh. School is out and the children become restless.

Farstrider said,
Ha ha at 3 of the 4 posters! You poor people, that you feel the need to defend a company that does exactly the same to other companies!
@DreadBoat89 when last have you used Google Docs or have you used it at all? Anyway, still think you're all pretty funny. Just use what serves your purpose and stop always defending MS, it's like a stuck record on this site!

I Somewhat agree with you, but asking Neowin to not be MS biased is like asking Google to, well, not be google. Neowin is "mainly" a MS centric site.

Milamber said,

I Somewhat agree with you, but asking Neowin to not be MS biased is like asking Google to, well, not be google. Neowin is "mainly" a MS centric site.


Hence the 'win' in Neowin. Also I have used Google Apps, to the fullest extent of it's abilities, I ABHORE it. Microsoft Office WebApps suck, too. It's because Microsoft is trying to push users toward getting Microsoft Office. No web-based document editing site is going to be able to do what a full fledged program can do. It's simply because there are more things and more space that you can put into a program than into a web-based app.

I'm interested in at least seeing what Office 365 can do for me. Google Docs, tried it... wasn't what I was looking for.

Enron said,
I'm interested in at least seeing what Office 365 can do for me. Google Docs, tried it... wasn't what I was looking for.

Agreed. I've tried the web based Office stuff already available and it knocks the spots off Google's half-hearted effort!

Chicane-UK said,

Agreed. I've tried the web based Office stuff already available and it knocks the spots off Google's half-hearted effort!

We use it at our school and haven't seen any issues that can't be handled by Google Apps or OpenOffice. Both for free. For TRUE Office power users, Google Apps can't compete, but that's very few people that I've met. I'd venture to say that 95% of people use 5% of features available in an office suite. And

farmeunit said,

We use it at our school and haven't seen any issues that can't be handled by Google Apps or OpenOffice. Both for free. For TRUE Office power users, Google Apps can't compete, but that's very few people that I've met. I'd venture to say that 95% of people use 5% of features available in an office suite. And

That same tired argument can be used for anything, just because you or a few people you know don't use much of the features in a program doesn't mean that's the case, 95%, talk about an overexagerated guess, or maybe more of a hope on your part?

Office 365 is more than just Word, Exel, PP, and so on, it's also a complete backend as well, hosted Exchange, SharePoint, Lync for communications. The fact is that it's miles ahead of Google Docs, and if they didn't agree about this over at Google then they wouldn't come out with this blog post.

farmeunit said,

We use it at our school and haven't seen any issues that can't be handled by Google Apps or OpenOffice. Both for free. For TRUE Office power users, Google Apps can't compete, but that's very few people that I've met. I'd venture to say that 95% of people use 5% of features available in an office suite. And

Yes, it might feel like that when you're at school but it's not like that in the business world.

Google has a lot to think with the new FTC antitrust probe. If I were in them I wouldn't loose my time talking sillynesses about their competitor.

DaveGreen said,
Google has a lot to think with the new FTC antitrust probe. If I were in them I wouldn't loose my time talking sillynesses about their competitor.
And if I were in them, I would reinstate Eric Schmidt. I don't think Larry Page can handle this.
He can come when all of this sorted.

DaveGreen said,
If I were in them I wouldn't loose my time talking sillynesses about their competitor.

Where have you been. Its all about sillyness now.

FMH said,
And if I were in them, I would reinstate Eric Schmidt. I don't think Larry Page can handle this.
He can come when all of this sorted.

True.. Larry page is just a programmer. nothing more.. Im not taking anything away from him, thanks to him we have google.... But it Schmidt that really took Google to where it is now..

well google... maybe if you rendered documents properly, more people would consider using your cloud apps. not every document is just words... a lot have formatting that aren't properly done in google docs...

As if we expected anything else from the competition. Not interested in either product, but companies should know their smear sways no one.

Frazell Thomas said,
As if we expected anything else from the competition. Not interested in either product, but companies should know their smear sways no one.

It may sway no one here, but it probably works on the majority of non-tech customers.

MS Lose32 said,
Yeah! Microsoft doesn't need any competition!

Not competition like Google, whose Google apps can't even render a document correctly and then proceed to slate Microsoft's competing product which can render documents correctly.

neo158 said,

Not competition like Google, whose Google apps can't even render a document correctly and then proceed to slate Microsoft's competing product which can render documents correctly.

You mean render documents made by a proprietary and closed source product versus an open document format that anyone can use. They just string you along, changing their format between version to get you to continue using their newer products. The only thing worse is trying to use Works documents with Office.

But since you're good little Microsoft drones, you'll not consider anything else. Good for you.

neo158 said,

Not competition like Google, whose Google apps can't even render a document correctly and then proceed to slate Microsoft's competing product which can render documents correctly.

Microsoft can't even implement its own OOXML specs fully, let alone render ODF with full fidelity.

Flawed said,

Microsoft can't even implement its own OOXML specs fully, let alone render ODF with full fidelity.

I don't care with ODF, it's a useless "me too" format. Talk about originality.

farmeunit said,

You mean render documents made by a proprietary and closed source product versus an open document format that anyone can use. They just string you along, changing their format between version to get you to continue using their newer products. The only thing worse is trying to use Works documents with Office.

But since you're good little Microsoft drones, you'll not consider anything else. Good for you.


If I spent millions of $ in R&D I would not make it open source, I would try to make some $ to pay the people who help me develop my product so they can live happy lives. Personally I'd like to have some cash to go out for a beer with my mates after work.
If a company has an idea for a product they can either (a) wait for an open standard to be ratified so they can implement their vision which may take years, or (b) develop the new ideas into a new version of their own specification and release now.
By the way the Word Document specification is available for any company to implement and work with. An personally, I dont see why Microsoft has to give thses efforts away.

thenonhacker said,

The world doesn't care about ODF, it's a useless "me too" format. Talk about originality.

+1 (before the change)
Oh, and I fixed that for you.

DukeWars said,

If I spent millions of $ in R&D I would not make it open source, I would try to make some $ to pay the people who help me develop my product so they can live happy lives. Personally I'd like to have some cash to go out for a beer with my mates after work.
If a company has an idea for a product they can either (a) wait for an open standard to be ratified so they can implement their vision which may take years, or (b) develop the new ideas into a new version of their own specification and release now.
By the way the Word Document specification is available for any company to implement and work with. An personally, I dont see why Microsoft has to give thses efforts away.

Exactly Google puts out a word processor with 1995 capability but we're supposed to be wowed because it's online. meh

thenonhacker said,

I don't care with ODF, it's a useless "me too" format. Talk about originality.


LOL, the "me too" format is OOXML. Get your facts straight.

farmeunit said,

You mean render documents made by a proprietary and closed source product versus an open document format that anyone can use. They just string you along, changing their format between version to get you to continue using their newer products. The only thing worse is trying to use Works documents with Office.

But since you're good little Microsoft drones, you'll not consider anything else. Good for you.

screw open source jsut because its open it doesnt mean it does what is supposed to. you want free crap that's fine but don't go around pushing your open source bull**** just because its open. You get what you pay for. Google docs can do and say whatever the hell they want but its always gonna be the shadow of MS office. You talk like google is the standard lets not forget the reason you got through school is because your PC had all these nice MS apps installed so that you could get your homework done. Talk all you want Google troll but in the end there is only one word processor standard not two or three.

You talk like now days there is no way to open a word doc with an open source processor. you obviously don't have a clue what you're talking about or may be you thought that now that Oo is gone there is no way to open word docs for free. People pay not because theyre stupid, they pay beacuse they want a product that performs well and has not a few but all of the tools necesary to get the job done.

If Google felt like they had the best cloud word processor out there they wouldn't be taking cheap shots a Microsoft

thenonhacker said,

I don't care with ODF, it's a useless "me too" format. Talk about originality.

The ODF ISO standard predates the OOXML ISO standard by two years.

Majesticmerc said,
The ODF ISO standard predates the OOXML ISO standard by two years.

First to ISO standard != first to be created…

MFH said,

First to ISO standard != first to be created…

Still ODF predates OOXML with its inclusion with OpenOffice 1.0 in 2002, and that's assuming that OOXML and the Office 2003 "XML Format" are even remotely related.