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Google Workspace vs Microsoft 365: Comparison

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Google Workspace or Microsoft 365?

Opinions differ. Microsoft has been offering an efficient software package with its Microsoft 365 package for years.

With its Drive and Google Docs file hosting service, Google first established itself as a free alternative to Microsoft. It was aimed primarily at private users. Google Workspace, therefore, aims to meet the requirements of professionals and establish itself as a serious competitor of Microsoft Office. But how does Google Workspace defend itself against the market leader?

Short introduction : Microsoft 365 vs. Google Workspace

Google and Microsoft office and collaboration tools both pursue the same approach: businesses need to be able to accomplish as many tasks as possible with office solutions without having to rely on third-party applications. In general, the different programs complement each other perfectly to ensure a smooth and continuous workflow.

Microsoft 365

Most of the applications in the Microsoft 365 suite are familiar to all PC users: Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are among the best-known programs in the world and are standard equipment in many offices. Microsoft 365 is bringing these software solutions to the cloud to simplify mobile work and transform traditional office applications into modern collaborative tools.

AdvantagesDisadvantages
✔ Popular office software✘ Complex licensing system
✔ Solutions Cloud et desktop 
✔ Extensive collaboration capabilities 
✔ Cloud storage included 

Google Workspace

Google has for a long time ceased to limit itself to a simple search engine. The company also integrates office tools into its product line. Google was one of the first to offer spreadsheets, word processors, and presentation creation through a browser-based web application. The individual programs evolved into a complete cloud suite integrating Gmail and Google Drive.

AdvantagesDisadvantages
✔ Independent use of the device✘ No desktop version
✔ Professional email domain in Gmail included 
✔ Extensive collaboration options 
✔ Cloud storage included 

Comparison of cloud solutions from Google and Microsoft

With Google Workspace, Google targets professionals and declares war on market leader Microsoft and its Microsoft 365 product. Here is a comparison of the two products based on the following criteria:

  • Available applications
  • Cloud storage space
  • File sharing
  • Collaboration
  • Email
  • Security
  • Data protection
  • Availablity
  • Support
  • Price range

Our comparison was updated in May 2021.

google workspace vs Microsoft 360
Photo from pexels.com

The available applications

If you take a look at the product portfolio of the two Business packages, you will see that the scope of their functions is roughly the same. Google finally offers a suitable alternative for every Microsoft 365 application.

FunctionMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Word processorMicrosoft WordGoogle Docs
SpreadsheetMicrosoft ExcelGoogle Sheets
PresentationsMicrosoft PowerPointGoogle Slides
EmailMicrosoft OutlookGmail
Digital notepadMicrosoft OneNoteGoogle Keep
WebhostingMicrosoft SharepointGoogle Sites
Video conferenceSkype for BusinessGoogle Meet
Instant messaging serviceMicrosoft TeamsGoogle Chat
Professional chat roomMicrosoft TeamsGoogle Chat
Social media for businessYammerGoogle Currents

However, a unique feature of the Microsoft product is the download option. All of the Microsoft 365 Business apps listed above are also available as desktop app if needed. They can be installed directly from the cloud on local devices (depending on the product selected) and be used offline.

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Google Workspace also offers offline functions for Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides. It’s not in the form of a desktop app, but as a feature of the web app. A prerequisite, however, is to use the Chrome browser and an extension for offline operation.

CharacteristicsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Desktop applications as a web applicationYesYes
Offline operation possibleYesYes

Cloud storage and file sharing

For businesses, cloud solutions such as Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace score mainly thanks to centralized data storage on the Internet.

Microsoft relies on Microsoft 365 on the file hosting service OneDrive. Google Workspace users have access to a storage space defined on the cloud platform Google Drive.

While Microsoft provides 1 TB of cloud storage for all Microsoft 365 users, the Google Workspace storage volume depends on the chosen subscription: it is possible to choose between 30 GB and 5 TB per user. The Enterprise version even includes unlimited storage.

Microsoft and Google both offer the ability to sync to a device. Files and folders stored online can be used offline if needed.

To manage files stored online, both solutions offer many options. Common handy features include version history and sharing features, which make it very easy for users to share files with people within or outside their organization (for a fixed period of time if necessary).

You may like to look at our Microsoft Office top 5 alternatives.

The little extra from Google: the suite also offers a complete search function based on automatic natural language processing (NLP).

CharacteristicsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Capacity for backup (per user license)1 ToDepending on the version 30 GB, 1 TB, 5 TB, or unlimited
SynchronizationYesYes
Version historyYesYes
File sharing with link and expiration dateYesYes
Search functionYesYes, NLP search

Collaboration tools

As collaboration platforms, Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace provide powerful tools for communicating and collaborating with your colleagues, customers, and business partners.

collaboration tool
Photo by Canva Studio from Pexels

The two solutions make it possible to make video calls, exchange by instant messaging, but also to work collaboratively on texts, spreadsheets, or even presentations.

Google’s response to Skype for Business is the video conferencing Google Meet service. Google Chat also provides users with a communication platform for direct messaging and group conversations.

Corporate websites and other intranet applications can be implemented very professionally with Google Workspace and Microsoft 365. Google relies on an intuitive template system with Sites. Microsoft SharePoint is less intuitive but offers many more possibilities to implement internal web applications in the company.

With Yammer and Google Currents, the two providers offer cloud computing solutions that allow the establishment of internal social networks.

CharacteristicsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Management of appointments and contacts adapted to the companyYesYes
Simultaneous processing of texts, tables, and presentationsYesYes
VideocallsYesYes
Instant messagingYesYes
Chat groupsYesYes
Video conferenceYesYes
Internal company web pages / IntranetYesYes
Social network for businessYesYes
CharacteristicsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Data encryptionYesYes
ISO / IEC 27001 (information security)YesYes
ISO / IEC 27017 (Cloud security)YesYes
ISO 27018 (Cloud Data Protection)YesYes
SOC 1YesNon
SOC 2YesYes
SOC 3YesYes
FedRAMPYesYes
PCI DSS (security standard for credit card transactions)YesYes
HIPAAYesNot for all applications

Availability and support

As with Microsoft Cloud, Google Workspace guarantees 99.9% uptime to users. The service teams of both platforms can be contacted 24 hours a day by phone, email, or chat.

CharacteristicsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Availability99,9 %99,9 %
Support 24h on 24YesYes
TelephoneYesYes
Chat / EmailYesYes

Price

Google offers three versions of Google Workspace.

Version Google WorkspaceScope of functions
Business StarterOffice Suite with 30 GB of storage space
Business StandardOptimized Office Suite with 2TB storage
Business PlusOffice Premium Suite with advanced functions, 5 TB of storage and archive functions

Google also offers an Enterprise version for large corporations. In this version, the unlimited storage space is particularly interesting.

Microsoft offers a more differentiated product line. In total, 3 packs with various ranges of functions are available for professional use.

Versions Microsoft 365Scope of functions
Microsoft 365 Business BasicAll Office applications in the web version as well as Exchange, OneDrive, Sharepoint, and Teams
OfficeMicrosoft 365 Business StandardAll Office applications in web and desktop version as well as Exchange, OneDrive, Sharepoint, and Teams
OfficeMicrosoft 365 Business PremiumAll Office applications in Web and desktop version as well as Exchange, OneDrive, Sharepoint and Teams; in addition: Intune & Azure Information Protection

In summary: features overview

Google Workspace is a worthy competitor to the market leader and offers almost all of Microsoft’s functionality online. Only users who prefer to work with a desktop app rather than a web browser fare better with Microsoft 365.

Applications offeredMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Word processorMicrosoft WordGoogle Docs
SpreadsheetMicrosoft ExcelGoogle Sheets
PresentationMicrosoft PowerPointGoogle Slides
EmailMicrosoft OutlookGmail
Bloc-notes digitalMicrosoft One NoteGoogle Keep
WebhostingMicrosoft SharepointGoogle Sites
Video conferenceSkype for BusinessGoogle Meet
Instant messaging serviceMicrosoft Teams, Skype for BusinessGoogle Chat
Chat spaceMicrosoft TeamsGoogle Chat
Social network for businessYammerGoogle Currents
Desktop apps as a web appYesYes
Offline use possibleYesYes
Cloud storage and file sharingMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Storage capacity per user license1 ToAccording to the version 30 GB, 1 TB, 5 TB, or unlimited
SynchronizationYesYes
Version historyYesYes
File sharing with link and expiration dateYesYes
Search functionYesNLP Search
Collaboration toolsMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Management of appointments and contacts adapted to the companyYesYes
Simultaneous processing of texts, spreadsheets and presentationsYesYes
VideocallsYesYes
Instant messagingYesYes
Chat groupsYesYes
Video conferenceYesYes
Internal company web pages / IntranetYesYes
Social network for businessYesYes
EmailMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Without advertisingYesYes
Own email domain includedNonYes
Mobile AppYesYes
Email client includedAccording to the versionsNon
Alias EmailYesYes
Email Groups / DistributorsYesYes
Security and data protectionMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Data encryptionYesYes
ISO / IEC 27001 (Information security)YesYes
ISO / IEC 27017 (Cloud Security)YesYes
ISO 27018 (Cloud Data Protection)YesYes
SOC 1YesNon
SOC 2YesYes
SOC 3YesYes
FedRAMPYesYes
PCI DSS (Security Standard for Credit Card Transactions)YesYes
HIPAA BAAYesNot for all applications
Support & AvailabilityMicrosoft 365Google Workspace
Availablity99,9 %99,9 %
Support 24/7YesYes
TelephoneYesYes
Chat / EmailYesYes
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