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Author Topic: Google Apps vs. MS Office 365: Your Choice  (Read 6120 times)
zridling
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« on: July 25, 2011, 09:22:09 AM »


http://www.zdnet.com/blog...fice-365-your-choice/1357

Phil Wainewright aims this critique for businesses, since, if you already use a desktop version of MS Office, then Office 365 is one path to the cloud you'll consider. Wainewright skims over features and looks at the architecture -- particularly the relationship between desktop Office and the Office Web Apps in the cloud -- and holds that this isn’t really a cloud architecture. But if you're a smaller firm and can't justify implementing and supporting Sharepoint and Exchange, Office 365 might make sense. Then comes the bad news:

  • Microsoft offers 11 different plans for professionals and small businesses, enterprise customers, and education. Here we go again.
  • The Office Web Apps are pretty weak versions of desktop Microsoft Office. They exist mainly to permit collaboration online and storing accessible documents in the cloud.
  • Microsoft would not only like you to be a desktop Office user, they would like you to upgrade to Office 10 Professional Plus, with its retail price of $499.99 -- upgrades are cheaper. Ouch.

For the $6-$24/month plans for 365 compared to Google's free (or $50/year per user for support), I don't see anyone making the switch to 365 from another platform. (Unless Microsoft pays you hundreds of thousands like they did the Univ. of Nebraska.) Meanwhile, I'll stick with good ol' desktop LibreOffice.
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- zaine (on Google+)
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2011, 11:36:54 AM »

For what I do, it's MS Office or nothing. Period. Nothing else can do what MS Office does. I don't say that with joy. I'm tied to Microsoft, and am working my ass off to try and free myself so I can work on any platform I choose. Right now, that's just not possible. Sad

(I work on documents with added markup that only MS Office supports -- the markup is from a third party, and not from MS Office.)
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2011, 11:59:45 AM »

Quote from: top of article
Guest post Louis Naugès is co-founder and chief cloud evangelist of international Google Apps integrator Revevol.

I gotta go with the bulk of the commenters there; Google apps is not that impressive ... And that guy is a shill.
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zridling
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« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2011, 07:58:10 AM »

For what I do, it's MS Office or nothing. Period. Nothing else can do what MS Office does. I don't say that with joy. I'm tied to Microsoft.

My wife is in the same boat. Her company programmers are truly awful (they suck at simple scripts), but now they've moved onto O-2010 and half the company is using 2003; it's total FUBAR.

I gotta go with the bulk of the commenters there; Google apps is not that impressive ... And that guy is a shill.

Google Apps looks good for basic files, but in practice, I've found it consistently terrible. And I'm certain that I'll wake (again) someday and find that the geniuses at Google have disabled my account without warning, locking me out.
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« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2011, 10:19:24 AM »

Google Apps looks good for basic files, but in practice, I've found it consistently terrible. And I'm certain that I'll wake (again) someday and find that the geniuses at Google have disabled my account without warning, locking me out.

OT: They locked you out before?  Did you ever find out why?  And how did you get it back?
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40hz
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« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2011, 12:45:28 PM »

Having tried both services, I think Microsoft's offering has the best chance of success at this point.

That being said, there's still several issues that need to be addressed before I'd say "greenlight" on Microsoft's cloud initiative.

Security is, and will be, an ongoing concern. Just because something hasn't been hacked doesn't mean it won't be hacked in the future. And that applies to both cloud services and privately held server farms. It's a little too early to make a judgment call, but I think these cloud services will be at least as secure as the average businesses servers are. Actually, when I look at the relatively poor state of security I've seen with many SMB client's networks, out-of-the-box security will likely be better with cloud services. Security is the biggest single objection I'm seeing in businesses that are considering cloud solutions. Part of it is a perception issue - but there's also very legitimate and real security concerns about these services as they're currently set up.

Cloud is cloud - which means it's heavily dependent on your Internet connection and its quality of service. So the success of cloud solution deployments will be a double-edged sword. I expect most "business class" on-ramp connection's QoS to be acceptable initially - then get bad as more and more companies pile on - then get good again as major ISPs and Telcos accept cloud services here to stay and upgrade their infrastructure to accommodate them. (Remember what happened with AOL when it first got really popular?) Right now this is the weakest link in the chain and the biggest potential source of grief once "cloud" catches on.

All this aside, there are some huge advantages to going with cloud for many SMBs - once it's working, the worries about security are  addressed, and there are assurances you can get adequate bandwidth and QoS for your connection into it. But you can read all about that in the sales literature and on the provider's websites so I won't recap it here.



Gonna be "fun" no matter what you choose. And a rocky road no matter what. tellme

This is definitely a technology where you don't want to be an "early adopter" unless you absolutely have to. Grin

--------
Note: For the record - 40hz is a Microsoft Partner. This allows him to be better informed about Microsoft than he would otherwise be were he not. But this relationship does not "buy" his opinions. Nor does being a MS Partner influence his recommendations to clients (or friends) about any technology, service, or software. He often recommends and implements FOSS solutions for his clients whenever they make sense or save money. So there! mrgreen

« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 01:02:46 PM by 40hz » Logged

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zridling
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2011, 10:33:52 PM »

OT: They locked you out before?  Did you ever find out why?  And how did you get it back?

Yea, they locked me out of my account last year and wouldn't tell me why, nor could I get back in to retrieve my data. They "liberated" it. More than three weeks later, I got a note from Google saying they suspected Chinese hackers were using my account to spam others and shut it down. Nice of them to give me a warning, NOT! I just opened another account and about a month later they gave me back my old account, spam and all. Tried to delete it several times but it's still there. Jeez. Can't fix it, can't reason with it. There's your cloud.
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« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2011, 11:05:06 PM »

OT: They locked you out before?  Did you ever find out why?  And how did you get it back?

Yea, they locked me out of my account last year and wouldn't tell me why, nor could I get back in to retrieve my data. They "liberated" it. More than three weeks later, I got a note from Google saying they suspected Chinese hackers were using my account to spam others and shut it down. Nice of them to give me a warning, NOT! I just opened another account and about a month later they gave me back my old account, spam and all. Tried to delete it several times but it's still there. Jeez. Can't fix it, can't reason with it. There's your cloud.

I've had horrible luck with Google's login system. It's very broken. And the ruins of it are scattered across Youtube as well. It's a MAJOR effort for me to login and get anything done. I need to set aside an hour, minimum.  Angry
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« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2011, 11:15:04 PM »

saying they suspected Chinese hackers

 huh Sarcastic lol @ google. If it's happening they know. No suspicions or ifs

Long long ago they suspended my adsense one week before a payout was due and sent me a note accusing me of clicking to increase income. Ever since then I know they are scam artists, if gmail didn't have so many good features I wouldn't have gotten into google services to begin with.
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« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2011, 06:58:53 AM »

I've had horrible luck with Google's login system. It's very broken. And the ruins of it are scattered across Youtube as well. It's a MAJOR effort for me to login and get anything done. I need to set aside an hour, minimum.  Angry

I've got a client that was talked into hosting their Email domain at/with Google. It has been the most unbe-freaking-lieve-able Train Wreck I've ever been involved in. After 6 months the office manager still doesn't have a working Email address.

Well we just delete the mailbox and recreate it like the instructions say, right? Ha! Wrong!! Oh sure, you can delete it just fine ... But you'll never be able to create another one with the same Email address ever again. Try to create a different Email and use the first one as an alias for it - HeHe Nice Try - Fail!

From and administrative standpoint, I'd have to say that Google's mail hosting is the most uselessly broken, user hostile, total piece of shit I have ever encountered.

The only thing I'm taking away from the experience (aside from total disgust with the ~Cloud~), is a firm belief that MS Exchange (which has served me flawlessly for many years) is a far better solution...If you really do depend on reliable Email service.
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« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2011, 07:26:35 AM »

Zoho office is much better for personal use(free) and if you're business user then they do have affordable plans. Considering the regular anti-spam outage of google, it's risky to use their service. If anyone is inch serious about their business then they'll think thrice before hosting data with google. Google has 50$+ additional charges per user for extra mailbox (above 7 GB) and other services. As per my observation zoho and hyperoffice are enough for most cloud office tasks. I'm sure there are folks who don't mind office 365 fees, compared to Google, atleast MS is reliable about data on their cloud.
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zridling
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« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2011, 09:23:18 AM »

Well we just delete the mailbox and recreate it like the instructions say, right? Ha! Wrong!! Oh sure, you can delete it just fine ... But you'll never be able to create another one with the same Email address ever again. Try to create a different Email and use the first one as an alias for it - HeHe Nice Try - Fail!

If you have a Gmail account, such experiences are why it's a good idea to have 2-3 alternate accounts just so you'll have access. And share (data) with yourselves liberally among the accounts! NPSS (New Platform, Same Shit)
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I agree. Zoho is robust, and has been so for half a decade now.
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« Reply #12 on: July 27, 2011, 10:24:05 AM »

Well we just delete the mailbox and recreate it like the instructions say, right? Ha! Wrong!! Oh sure, you can delete it just fine ... But you'll never be able to create another one with the same Email address ever again. Try to create a different Email and use the first one as an alias for it - HeHe Nice Try - Fail!

If you have a Gmail account, such experiences are why it's a good idea to have 2-3 alternate accounts just so you'll have access. And share (data) with yourselves liberally among the accounts! NPSS (New Platform, Same Shit)


Do I have a Gmail account? Yes. But I only use it for a test target. Here at the office we have an Exchange server (with a flawless record). And at home I have an MS IIS POP/SMTP setup for my primary Email address. and it too has been doing just fine for quite some time.

If I wanted to go wandering around all day with my head in the clouds I'd go back to smoking weed...

 smiley
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« Reply #13 on: July 27, 2011, 10:32:04 AM »

+1w/mahesh2k regarding Zoho. Especially their business management and accounting applications. Nicely executed and very reasonably priced.

The only possible problem is how well they'll be able to compete long-term against the MSoft and Google juggernaut.

Still, it's well worth spending a little time checking them out over at www.Zoho.com  Thmbsup

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« Reply #14 on: July 27, 2011, 12:16:21 PM »

Having tried both services, I think Microsoft's offering has the best chance of success at this point.

Same here.  In my opinion, these services are like cell phone service providers here in the U.S. - They all suck, if you want/need it, you just find the one that sucks the least.  Google Apps vs. MS Office Web?  No comparison.  Office Web is a VERY slimmed down version of Office, but still very capable and just works.  Google Apps?  Not so much.  A lot of features just don't work, or at least work right to the way I would expect them to, and the rest is even more basic than Office Web.  My personal choice?  Notepad++.  More features, cloudless, portable, and the documents written with it can be read by anything.  What's not to like there?  As for Zoho - can't say, haven't ever tried.  Maybe they are the exception to the rule above (there is ALWAYS an exception, right?).
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« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2011, 12:40:41 PM »

Zoho has an incredibly broad range of services. Those I've used are pretty darn good. They had much more advanced online app capability than Google for a long time and that is probably still the case. Nevermind Office 365, it's a "cloud augmented" solution, not really a total cloud solution at present (the online versions of the Office apps are pretty crap in most cases).

Stoic, bummer about your admin nightmare. Thing is my org has been on GApps for a couple years now, virtually no problems or downtime, nothing like the headache you describe. And of course you can find many similar nightmare stories but for Exchange. So, bad luck maybe, but I don't think either Exchange or GApps is fundamentally flawed. The sheer number of people successfully using both is a pretty solid argument against that being the case.

- Oshyan
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mahesh2k
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« Reply #16 on: August 05, 2011, 07:32:27 AM »

Funny commercial ad from MS against Gmail/Google Apps -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OrkAuwaoFGg

 tongue
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« Reply #17 on: August 05, 2011, 07:50:24 AM »

Funny commercial ad from MS against Gmail/Google Apps -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OrkAuwaoFGg

 tongue

Very cute!

Did anyone notice that the office he walks into is Contoso Ltd?
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« Reply #18 on: August 05, 2011, 11:03:38 PM »

That video has nothing to do with Google Docs. It is about Gmail. I am not sure their advertising is the same in Google Docs as it is Gmail, though maybe I'm wrong. I've never noticed ads in Google Docs. Don't see any now.

A better comparison would be between the interfaces. The frustrating thing about Google Docs is the usability of its interface. It just isn't as easy as Office, period. It does have its advantages, but its user interface isn't one -- at least not yet.
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mahesh2k
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« Reply #19 on: August 05, 2011, 11:33:42 PM »

That is one video out of series of videos from Office365 which takes shot on Google docs. I found one with gmail so posted here.
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zridling
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« Reply #20 on: August 06, 2011, 06:25:16 PM »

Yea, if you're not using AdBlock or something similar to kill Google ads, it's time. I'm not searching CP or how to build nuclear bombs in my basement so the info any company has on me is limited to my household habits (mower brand, tool cart, etc.). Heck, Walmart knows WAY more about my personal life than Google ever has a chance to.
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« Reply #21 on: August 06, 2011, 11:02:43 PM »

Ghostery seems to be blocking a lot of trackers and ads just like ad-block plus.
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