Microsoft Office sets the standard for business productivity in Windows, but not everyone wants to use it. Office applications are notorious for their use of system resources, meaning that people with older or low-end computers find the programs difficult to use, especially when they need to have more than one program simultaneously running. Another problem some businesses and individuals have with Microsoft Office is that it is expensive. People need the capability to produce and exchange files in the formats of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, but the price tag often keeps them away. Finally, some businesses and individuals just don’t like Microsoft for a variety of reasons. Fortunately, there are options available for everyone who needs Office compatibility without having to deal with Microsoft. Below you find the 6 best Microsoft alternatives for Windows.
- Google Docs: represents one of the best alternatives to Microsoft Office available right now. This suite of applications creates and opens files from Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint combine with drawing and forms applications to give you all the file creation and editing capabilities you need. Best of all, Google Docs will open and save to Microsoft Office formats, so you will not have any compatibility concerns. Google Docs is a web-based office suite so you can use it on any computer with a browser, not just on Windows computers.
- Open Office: is one of the oldest Microsoft Office compatible software suites. Because it is an open source initiative, businesses can customize the applications according to their needs. Offered now by software giant Oracle, Open Office has been saving people money for more than a decade. It opens, edits, and creates Microsoft Office files as well as a variety of other file types. Open Office also features its own native file formats as well. Open Office installs on your Windows, Linux, Solaris, or Macintosh computer and is available as a free download from its website.
- Corel Word Perfect Office X5: offers full compatibility with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint formats as well as with Adobe PDFs to give users a strong commercial package that can set Windows users free from Microsoft Office. The program suite, however, is not free. Options available begin at $149.99 for the standard suite and $399.99 for the professional version. A Home Office version of the software is available for $10.00. The Corel package has a lot of impressive capabilities, although the cost is somewhat high compared to other Microsoft Office alternatives.
- Lotus Symphony: is a free office suite made available by IBM. These applications support the Open Document Format (ODF) but also can import, edit, and export in popular Microsoft Office file formats. Symphony is openly promoted as an alternative to Microsoft Office that can save businesses a lot of money in software licensing costs. Symphony is adapted from Oracle’s OpenOffice software suite and is available as a free download for Windows and Linux computers.
- ThinkFree: is a web-based office suite that can keep you and your company working with Microsoft Office files for a good price: free. Available for Windows users and any other browser-equipped devices, users can access their files from anywhere. Free online storage of documents makes it possible to easily share your documents and access them from virtually any location. ThinkFree has mobile applications for smartphones for sale. A desktop version of ThinkFree software for Windows, Linux, and Macintosh is available for $49.95. A ThinkFree Power Tool will synchronize files between your desktop computer and your online ThinkFree account.
- Zoho: integrates Microsoft Office compatibility with Zoho works with Windows and other operating systems that support browsers. Zoho is free for personal use, but businesses must pay for all Zoho applications based on the number of user licenses needed. Pricing is best understood by visiting the Zoho website.
Try all of these 6 best Microsoft office alternatives for Windows and see if they meet your needs. If they do, you will enjoy the advantages of Microsoft Office file formats without the pricing and other disadvantages that are associated with the Microsoft product.