Oct 19, 2007 / software
Google Apps vs Microsoft Office: Where is the tipping point?

Today, for the first time ever, I found myself creating a document on Google Docs. This must sound really trivial, but I think it's possibly a very big deal. This is because I somehow ended up chosing Google Docs over my usual office suite - Microsoft Office.

I wasn't just playing either. The choice was for a one real, solid reason - location transparency; I want to get at this document tomorrow morning from a different location/computer, without having to remember to save it to a media card, or to re-run my offsite backup. I knew Google Docs would give me that without question.

I do wander what the tipping point was, I've dismissed Google Docs many times before thiking "it's a crappy browser app" or "it's a naff Google experiment that won't survive". Perhaps it's because I've just noticed Google getting serious about their Google Apps suite for businesses?

What was also pleasantly surprising was that I was using the Google Docs spreadsheet tool for 30 whole minutes, and didn't give up, get annoyed, or get stuck using the software. This is pretty darn good considering it's running in a web browser. Ok, it's not quite the same user experience as office gives, but it was good enough for this task.

In case you're interested, the task in hand was creating some projections for a possible business venture. It required using simple functions: formulas, cell referencing, copy & paste, insert columns etc.

So, there it is. Google Docs managed to pull me in :) I'm gonna post in a few days/weeks/months and let you know if it sticks.

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