Taking your business applications to the cloud comes with a number of desirable benefits. From giving you access to essential files anywhere there’s an Internet connection to easy system backups and upgrades, there’s no shortage of benefits in moving your business system off of a locally stored drive and up to the cloud.
However, you need to decide which cloud service is right for you. Both Google and Microsoft cloud office applications offer a number of desirable benefits, yet one will better fit your company needs than the other. Here are some of the pros and cons of Google versus Microsoft coming from an IT perspective.
Google versus Microsoft: An IT Perspective
Google Suite Cost
Google has come a long way in a short amount of time. The Internet company continues to add to its impressive list of applications. Just a few years ago it wasn’t really possible to create written content on anything outside of the Microsoft Office Suite of programs, but Google has changed that.
The G Suite works directly off of the Internet, so while there are offline ways to use the applications, Google is at its best when it is online. However, when looking at Google versus Microsoft the first point of concern needs to be the cost. There is no one-time purchase price, but instead, as is the case with a number of applications, you now pay a subscription fee (like it or not, most companies have gone this way instead of allowing customers to traditionally buy the program). With the G Suite, you have a basic plan, which is $6 a month, a “Business” plan, which is $12, and an “Enterprise” plan, which is $25 a month.
The basic plan does give you a business email address ( the email will be @yourcompanynamehere.com , which instantly adds to the professional look). You’ll also receive video and voice calls, a secure IM, shared online calendar, online documents, presentations, and spreadsheets, 30GB of cloud storage, plus security/admin controls, 24/7 email and chat support, plus Google Sites for building a website.
The other features plans will build on this, offering more data, data loss prevention, email archives and so on. There is also a free G Suite option, which is great to test out some of the features to see if it works for you, but the free option doesn’t allow you to have custom emails, and everything comes with advertisements placed on it.
Microsoft Office Suite Cost
When considering Google versus Microsoft, the cost will likely be a factor. However, Microsoft complicates the pricing point. Unlike Google, which charges a plan fee, Microsoft charges a number of tier fees per user. For example, the Small Business “Business Essentials” service starts at $5 per user per month and goes up to the Business Premium of $12.50 per user per month. Jump to the “Enterprise” level and you will spend anywhere from $8 to $35 per user per month. So there’s a good chance you will spend much more with Microsoft than with Google.
In general, Microsoft will give you more storage than what you’ll receive with Google (so while you’re paying more, you will receive more storage for that price). For example, the Office 365 plan gives you 1TB with the Business Essentials package, while Google only gives you 30GB. Google counts email storage toward that 30GB limit, so if you’re someone who doesn’t regularly clear out your email, this storage amount is eaten up quickly (Microsoft gives you an added 50GB just for your email).
If you’re willing to jump up from the entry-level Google Suite plan to another tier, you’ll match what Microsoft has to offer for less money, but it does depend on the number of features you actually want. Also, if you’re unsure what your storage needs really are, then give Charlotte IT Solutions a call and an IT professional can help assess those needs and guide you to the right solution for your business.
If you’re really diving into Google versus Microsoft to determine the best cloud office suite, you’ll want to know more about the applications. With Microsoft, you do receive full versions of its popular programs Excel, Word, Outlook, PowerPoint and others. Plus, these applications work offline as well. This can be extremely beneficial if you like to work disconnected from the Internet (or if your Internet tends to go down from time to time).
The Microsoft applications are far more robust in performance. These are applications that have been developed and evolved over the decades. There’s a reason why each is known as the cream of the crop. If you’re a power user of any of the applications you’ll likely be better with Microsoft. However, for general usage, Google performs well.
One of the main benefits when using the Google Suite of applications is everything is automatically saved. If you’ve used Word for an extended period of time you know how frustrating it can be for the computer to crash, resulting in you losing hours of work. That’s not a problem with Google. Because it is online everything is saved in real time, so you’ll never run into this problem. With Microsoft, you do have to manually save everything you do.
You can real-time calibrate in Microsoft. However, it can be a bit sluggish when compared to Google. All of the Google applications are created in the cloud and run through an Internet browser plug-in (such as a plug-in via Chrome). There is almost no lag time when working on a single document with users from around the world. There are also more features when it comes to this kind of a feature. Microsoft does have some collaboration features, but it is by no way as performance-driven as Google. Plus, most of the Google cloud communication applications do tend to work better than what Microsoft’s Skype allows.
There are a number of variables to consider with each application though, so before you settle on one suite of applications over the other you should sit down with an IT professional and go over what is important to your business and what you’ll actually use. This will help you understand what to look for when selecting the best cloud office suite.
The Best Cloud Office Suite For You
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to selecting the best cloud office suite. What works for you may not work the best for your neighbor. That is why you need to go over the best cloud office suite options and decide which best addresses your company needs. If you need help selecting the best cloud office suite for your business make sure to contact the team at Charlotte IT Solutions. The company will walk you through the selection process and help connect you with the best cloud-based service for your budget and business.