Acceleratio was founded by Frane and me in 2009, and back then we have decided to run our business on Google Apps.  In 2009 Google was the only major player to offer an integrated collaboration suite in the cloud:  Mail (GMail), IM (Google Talk), Voice (Google Talk) and Collaboration (Google Docs and Google Sites). Their offering had one more additional benefit: it was free for small businesses (up to 25 users).

Since then we have grown to a company of some 15 employees + couple of contractors, and we have released 4 products (Terminal Services Log, Documentation Toolkit for SharePoint, Remote Desktop Gateway Monitor and Virtual Desktop Monitor). Being a Microsoft shop we were very interested in Office 365 when it was released. Finally, when new Office 365 (2013) was released, we decided to jump the ship.

Here is a quick comparison of two offerings from our personal experience.

Mail, Calendar and IM Features

Feature Comment Google Apps Office 365
Mail – Web client UX Gmail client simply rocks on any device, a new Outlook Web App is very close star_five  star_four
Mail – Incoming email rules Office365 currently does not support all the Outl0ok rules star_five star_two
Mail – IMAP Google is just terrible with IMAP, slow and not realiable. Microsoft wins star_one star_five
Mail – Formatting Microsoft wins here, there is no match for Outlook star_three star_five
Mail – Search Google is king here, but Microsoft is very close star_five star_four
Mail – Shared Mailboxes Google does not have this must-have feature star_one star_five
Mail – SPAM Google has much better antispam algorithms star_five star_three
Calendar Google has problems with Meeting Requests from Outlook and lacks features like Rooms and Scheduling star_three star_five
IM Google does not support group chat with Google Talk client, poor voice quality, no remote support. Microsoft Lync has many more features but the service is not reliable star_two star_three

Collaboration Features

Feature Comment Google Apps Office 365
Docs – Ease of Use Google Docs are easy to use and great for simple document sharing. SharePoint is bit more complicated for first time users star_five star_three
Docs – Formatting Microsoft is king here, Google cannot go beyond basic features like text and bullets star_two star_five
Docs – Coauthoring Microsoft SharePoint has many more features but coauthoring is somewhat complicated and it lacks proper comments and people tagging. (Microsoft plans to upgrade Office Web Apps in late 2013). star_five star_three
Docs – Organization Google Docs are great for two guys, but inability to properly organize your documents into folders or sets gives Microsoft huge advantage star_two star_five
Docs – Ease of sharing Google has great engine here, but Microsoft is close behind star_five star_four
Sites Google sites are piece of sh** star_one star_five
Microsoft Office clients Google does not support star_one star_five
Workflows, Permissions, Policies Google does not support star_one star_five
Offline use Dropbox still beats both offerings (Google Drive, SkyDrive Pro) star_three star_three

Other Features

Feature Comment Google Apps Office 365
Uptime In these 4 years I don't recall Google ever being down for us. When we moved to Office 365 our Lync was down for 5 days. Out of all Microsoft services, Lync seems to be least reliable. Email and SharePoint are working without issues. star_five star_four

Conclusion

Well, it’s obvious, Office 365 is way to go. Google has advantage only in a couple of areas. Please note, this is my personal view, and these features are important for our company. Required feature set may differ for other companies.

Totals Comment Google Apps Office 365
Score Google has 60/100 points, while Microsoft got 77/100 star_three star_four

2 Comments

  1. Warren Says

    Your evaluation is incorrect in several respects :

    Google Apps multidomain management : http://support.google.com/a/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=182452

    Google Apps Directory Sync :
    http://support.google.com/a/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=106368

    Google Apps API :
    https://developers.google.com/google-apps/app-apis

    Google Apps Calendar resources (rooms, etc) :
    http://support.google.com/a/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1686462&topic=1034362&ctx=topic

  2. Henryk Says

    wonderful detailed Post, very useful

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