Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Google Apps Won't Kill Microsoft Office

Mr. Softy can relax. The G-man ain't out to get him. Not that badly, anyways.

There have been times when Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) looked bent on destroying all that Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) holds dear. First, claim dominion over the Internet regardless of what browser package happens to lead that particular pack. Then, launch a direct attack on Microsoft Office with a collection of free, online office-style programs. Heck, the professional version of that collection even has a catchy name -- Google Apps.

Not so fast, though. A high-ranking Googler recently held an Apps presentation in Ann Arbor, Mich., and what he said might help the good folks in Redmond sleep at night. It's very simple: Google will never compete with the professional firepower of Microsoft Office.

For example, Excel will remain the high-powered data cruncher that it is today, unrivaled by the simpler, lightweight Google Spreadsheets. This one just isn't meant for heavy industrial use. Pivot tables, macros, and integration with databases other than Google Base would be nice, but would add too much heft to the code to justify reaching out to the relatively small number of users who depend on these features. Google remains an online-centered business, with the data flow restrictions that that implies and an Everyman customer profile on top of that.

For that same reason, there won't be any character or speech recognition features for the foreseeable future, so Nuance Communications (Nasdaq: NUAN  ) can take a deep breath, too. Big G does have an OCR (optical character recognition) engine of its own these days, as well as patent applications on voice search techniques.

The goal in Mountain View has always been to make it easy for people to interact with information. Being all things to all people isn't in the job description. Google Apps presents a simple office suite, tied together with Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, and other productivity and communications tools. It's simple, and you can't beat the price since it's free. This is great for small businesses and family groups, but perhaps less of a boon for large corporations.

The speaker in Ann Arbor was Scott Johnston, who helmed product development at small-biz productivity start-up JotSpot before Google bought that company. The customer list there, which included luminaries like eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY  ) , Intel (Nasdaq: INTC  ) , and Symantec (Nasdaq: SYMC  ) , must have been a major reason for that deal. So yes, Google has business ambitions in the productivity software field, but no plans to own the whole market.

Further Foolishness:

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (3)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 546961, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/21/2016 11:34:46 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,080.52 -81.83 -0.45%
S&P 500 2,136.06 -5.28 -0.25%
NASD 5,251.29 9.46 0.18%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/21/2016 11:19 AM
GOOGL $821.39 Down -0.24 -0.03%
Alphabet (A shares… CAPS Rating: *****
MSFT $59.90 Up +2.65 +4.63%
Microsoft CAPS Rating: ****
EBAY $28.76 Down -0.26 -0.90%
eBay CAPS Rating: ****
INTC $35.30 Down -0.13 -0.37%
Intel CAPS Rating: ****
NUAN $13.84 Up +0.12 +0.87%
Nuance Communicati… CAPS Rating: ****
SYMC $24.16 Down -0.04 -0.17%
Symantec CAPS Rating: ***