Business Software

Is Anyone Using Google Apps?

Critics, including me, have berated Microsoft for being slow to move Office to the Web. But the truth is, Google Apps is so far behind Microsoft Office that when Microsoft launches a Web-based version of Office later this year, Google Apps still won't be a blip on the radar.

As Computerworld notes in "Google Apps still trying to win over corporate users," Google has made hardly any money on its Google Apps Premium Edition (GAPE) since its launch, while Microsoft has continued to rake in billions. Here's what the article says:

Since launching GAPE in February 2007, Google has earned $4 million compared with $12.2 billion for Microsoft's Office, according to Gartner. Google won't clarify its number of paid users other than to say it has "hundreds of thousands."

In fact, Google Apps isn't even as popular as the free OpenOffice.org. In "Study: OpenOffice five times more popular than Google Docs," Eric Lai cites a study last month from market research firm ClickStream Technologies PLC which found that 51% of U.S. Internet users over age 18 use Microsoft Office, while 5% use OpenOffice.org, and only 1% use Google Docs.

The upshot? Google has a long way to go to catch Microsoft Office. Given that Office will be available on the Web in the coming year, I'm betting Google will never even come close.

This article originally appeared as a blog posting on our sister site, Computerworld.com.

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