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The desktop productivity space has been dominated for many years by Microsoft Office. Open source alternatives and cloud services like Google Apps have made some inroads, but most mainstream businesses are still hooked on Outlook, Word, PowerPoint and Excel to one degree or another, with Exchange acting as a back end hub for …

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Anonymous Coward

Can't wait for the Nook Metro

It will be yet another MS device to ignore.

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Facepalm

Re: Can't wait for the Nook Metro

I think you wanted to be over here... http://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2013/05/09/microsoft_nook/

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Re: MS OFFice is "more trouble than it’s worth"

Office 365 is not a Google Docs copy, describing it as such just displays your ignorance and casts doubt on any other observations you make.

Google Docs is a web based suite of office apps that run in a browser. Office 365 is a locally installed office suite that is paid for by subscription with server backend for email, storage etc. provided in the cloud.

Microsoft do have a web based version of Office that you could call a Google Docs copy but it's not Office 365.

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Re: MS OFFice is "more trouble than it’s worth"

OK, if you need to read an old Word6 document you need Open/Libre Office. If you are running O/L Office on Windows you do at least have Times Roman and Arial fonts, which most versions of Linux do not.

There is unending petty aggravation when documents are exchanged between Microsoft and Free environments, as they have found in Germany: where the city of Freiburg-im-Breisgau recently undefected back to dear old M$.

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why download the whitepaper

shouldnt this one be available to view online ;-)

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Re: why download the whitepaper

Of course not, it's a powerpoint.

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it's a pipe dream at the moment

Myself and my colleagues are fairly extensive users of word and excel and also the google equivalents. we only use the google ones when we're prepared to sacrifice just about everything to have an interactive document (usually something with very short lifespan like a to-do list or a discussion)

Even with google's proven ability to stun the market with web apps that were light years ahead of the competition (search, maps, gmail), google office apps haven't really closed the gap with proper office in the last 5 years and if google can't do it, nobody can (and yes I've used office online too).

If you're writing a proper document, you'll want to be sitting in front of a proper keyboard. that means you're already running windows, osx, or linux, and those already have perfectly acceptable office apps on. everything else is just playing around.

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To Office or not to Office

Personally i used the Mac Office equivalent iWork for quite a while at home, whilst using Office at work. I found shortcomings in the iWork product in compatibility between it & different variants of Office, and so I took out an Office 365 subscription trial & installed it on my mac. not looked back since.

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Facepalm

There are alternatives if you look

Most users never take advantage of all the balls and Whistles of Full Blown Office so you are paying needlessly. there are robust Exchnage replacements such as Zarafa http://www.zarafa.com/ but as mentioned peeps are too scared to dare to think of a non M$ world. Come on IT Manglers think out of the box.

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Anonymous Coward

"Avoid nasty plugins with this extension, says Google "...

In a somewhat understated Reg story recently "Avoid nasty plugins with this extension, says Google "... it was reported:

"Google's ongoing attempts to harry Microsoft by nipping at the heels of the cash cow that is Office have thrown up some new irritants, and a new definition of "additional software". Chrome Office Viewer is one of the ad giant's new tricks and allows those who use Beta versions of Chrome to open Microsoft Office documents …"

Now that google is so dominant and practically owns the search market in Europe alone, might it return to taking pot shots at its old rivals...? I for one would welcome a Google branded Office product, as LO and Open Office alternatives have been slow in implementing crucial MS-Office features. But Google would have to offer a genuine full-featured competing product, and be fully inter-operable with all versions of MS-Office, including full-support for all Add-ins & VBA Macros etc... I should clarify though, I would welcome it, as long as no Office customer data is fed back into Google's Ad business!

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Facepalm

Re: "Avoid nasty plugins with this extension, says Google "...

I for one would welcome a Google branded Office product, as LO and Open Office alternatives have been slow in implementing crucial MS-Office features.

I know! I can't understand why it took so long to transition to a ribbon interface! Like, OMFG! :rolleyes:

Frankly, I'm happy for you to plead with your Chocolate Factory overlords, but the majority of us are still using pretty much everything in Office 4.2 (if you can remember that far back) and not much more.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Avoid nasty plugins with this extension, says Google "...

Mac Office 4.2..? Great! But how are you dealing with file format interoperability and users sending you files from 2007? BTW please don't lump me in with the Chocolate Factory crew. Google are the new Microsoft school-yard bully- plain and simple. Its just that I want MS to fail. I will never forgive them for cynically pushing out file-format and ribbon changes to create a new era of customer lock-in!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Avoid nasty plugins with this extension, says Google "...

@AC 16:18 I too want Microsoft to fail, but sadly it is not likely to happen. In my case, I desire revenge for PTSD induced by Games for Windows Live (shudder).

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Mushroom

Office365, GoogleDocs, etc?

Forget "Bring Your Own Device". How long before businesses start expecting you to Bring Your Own Software...

You buy* your personal copy of your chosen productivity suite and use it at home, on your mobile, your tablet, the Internet cafe and in the office.

(*buy, as in pay an annual fee, or watch adverts, or surrender your personal data, or whatever new hairbrained approach is introduced next week. Remember, if you're not paying for it, you're not the customer, you're the product being sold (yes, I use this a lot))

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I've migrated a company to Office365. Wasn't my idea, I inherited the project.

The result was the it... works.

You get basically the same stuff you'd have with locally installed Office and Exchange.

Except you rent it for the rest of the lifetime of your company.

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For me...

I'll stick with Outlook 2010 since 2013 strips two of the most useful features for me. For my docs I'll use Office 2013 for work items, but all my personal items have been, or are being, migrated over to Google Docs. Office 365 would also only be useful for my docs since I don't want to migrate 10+ years of calendar items and email to Outlook.com just to get back categories, and it still wouldn't show me more than the current days appointments.

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A distasteful bit of shilling

Maybe I missed a turn somewhere, but this is clearly an advertorial, yet appears to be billed as 'reportage'. For all the protestations in the "whitepaper" that it is not an advertisement, it clearly is -- not least because it has MS plastered all over it, there is a preponderance of pro-MS rhetoric, and the conclusions are remarkably kind.

This is a disappointing term for The Vulture, which in this case more closely resembles a haggard and violated chicken.

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@A Long Fellow (from the author of the report)

Ouch! We rarely get into specific products and services with Reg research because of the danger of drawing this kind of fire.

The problem we had in this case, though, was actually the reverse of the one you assume. The Office 365 users participating in the study (while small in number as we said) were generally pretty content. Our concern was therefore not how to twist the data positively to make Microsoft look good, but how to write it up so it didn't come across as a shilling job without misrepresenting what was, in reality, a net positive view from those with experience.

I guess whether you think we struck the right balance will probably depend on your general disposition to Microsoft, cloud computing, the subscription model, and so on. We know from having done a shed load of research on alternative delivery/payment models that some are very negative, some are very positive, but the majority are actually quite pragmatic about how they view these things (useful in some areas, problematic in others).

It's pretty much the same with views of Microsoft. Some people hate the company, some are big fans, but the majority take the view that some of the stuff it does is good, and other stuff is not – no different to any other big supplier.

Anyway, I am unlikely to change your mind, but it would be genuinely useful to know which bits of the report you found distasteful or misleading. Have you had problems with Office 365 yourself?

If you are simply objecting to the concept of sponsorship, well there's not much I can say - in a world where people don't want to pay explicitly, you have to fund decent content somehow. All we can do is be up front about it and keep things objective.

In the meantime, while I empathise with people out there who say that trying to move away from Microsoft Office is more trouble than it's worth, in our little corner of the world we have been experimenting with the concept of using MS Office *by exception* rather than *by default*. As a small company we obviously have more freedom here, but there is a lot of stuff we do internally that doesn't require significant formatting, or the sophisticated Excel-style functionality, that can be handled in a device/editor/viewer agnostic way.

We are still working through this, but I would interested in the experiences of anyone else who is looking at how best to deal with multiple types of end point devices and operating systems.

Or is everyone waiting for iOS, Android and BlackBerry versions of MS Office? :-)

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