Even Googlers Can’t Rely On Google Apps?

By Nathan Weinberg

InfoWorld has an article about a study by a consulting firm that says Google Apps isn’t the right move for any sort of decent sized mature business, that it better fits smaller businesses with very limited needs. Bad enough to have in the press, no doubt, but then there’s this:

Even at Google’s offices, Apps is used internally only as a collaboration add-on to Microsoft Office, the report says.

It never sounds good when your employees are using your competitor’s product, not your own, because your product has a number of glaring limitations that limit its use in major corporations. How can Google expect any business even a tenth the size of Google to use Google Apps or Google Docs if they don’t use it themselves?

Some of the limitations the report lists:

– Documents: “Google Docs does not support a table of contents, headers, footers, automatic creation of footnotes or end notes.”

– Spreadsheets: “Google Spreadsheets does not support some of the more esoteric functions within formulas (e.g., database functions), and cannot hide rows or columns.”

– Presentations: “Google does not yet offer a presentation application, although it is in the process of developing one.”

– Customized applications: “Using Visual Studio Tools for Office, developers can create customized business applications that leverage capabilities in Microsoft Word and Excel, for example. While the Google APIs offer some programmatic control, they do not offer the broad level of capabilities that Microsoft does.”

Ah, Google Presentations. That reminds me…
(via Bink)

August 28, 2007 by Nathan Weinberg in:

3 Responses to “Even Googlers Can’t Rely On Google Apps?”

  1. joe Says:

    i may be speaking out of turn for Google here, but i REALLY don’t think Google Apps is meant to be used for business use. It would be insane for a business of ANY size to use GApps over MS Office, or even Star/OpenOffice, or hell, even iWork (which is not ready for business prime-time either).

    I don’t considering it damning at all that Google employees don’t use it as their primary Office application. There is NO WAY my company would move to Google or away from MS Office. Office is just so functional and robust, and online free app just can’t compete. But my point is, I don’t think it’s supposed to compete. Even though, for example, I would never consider using it for my job, I did just create a Google Spreadsheet yesterday to collaborate with some friends who I shared a hotel with this weekend so we could split up costs, and it is working great for that need.

  2. dsay Says:

    Google published some internal numbers, looks like the outlook is not so bleak after all.


  3. JG Says:

    Joe, but if it is not supposed to compete, what the heck is Google Office supposed to be for? People who use it two times a year to travel with friends? Who else would ever use the Google offerings, when they can pretty much use MS Works for free? (Works often comes bundled on new PCs.)

    So much for Google`s oft-touted motto of eating their own dog food.

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