Google Apps for Work vs Office 365: Which is better?

In: BlogDate: May 09, 2016By: Claire Lickman

You’ve probably heard a lot about the G Suite (formerly Google Apps for Work) and Office 365. But what are they, and what are the differences?

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G Suite and Office 365 are both cloud-based solutions.

A cloud-based solution means that everything is online – and because this information is backed up and stored across multiple servers, your data is safe and secure.

While there are many free solutions, they are often incomplete, so data is stored in several different places. The two main complete solutions are G Suite and Office 365.

While Office 365 is the most popular solution with approximately 60 million users to Google’s 2 million, for small businesses G Suite is a realistic and affordable choice.

About G Suite

Google Apps for Work: Google Docs

G Suite is similar to the free Google Docs that you might use at home, but designed for businesses. Users can have their own customised email, under their own domain name, while still allowing users to use the familiar Gmail interface and spam filters.

Users of G Suite can also manage their files with Google Drive, make HD video meetings through Google Hangouts with up to 25 people, as well as being able to manage calendars, documents and spreadsheets through Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Calendar.

G Suite was designed to be a cloud-based se ice, and is all online – so its Apps can be used on any device at any time, and it has the same look and options on both PC/Mac, tablet and mobile phone.

The base G Suite package starts from £3.30 per user per month, with up to 30GB of storage across email and Drive, and rises to £6.60 per user per month for unlimited storage and additional features – or £20 per user per month if you choose their Enterprise service. This includes all the advanced features, including data loss prevention for Gmail and Drive, and data analysis in BigQuery.

About Office 365

Office 365: Microsoft Word Online

Office 365 is based around the Microsoft Office package. This gives users the latest version of Microsoft Office (currently Office 2016), and includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Publisher. Users can also use Skype for Business with up to 60 minutes of free calls to landlines and mobile phones.

File storage is through OneDrive for individual file storage, and SharePoint for document collaboration (several users can edit one file) and document libraries.

Each user can install the full Office package on up to fifteen devices – five PC/Macs, five smartphones and five tablets. There is also an online Office, which is more limited and has only key features from the Office products.

Their package is available from £3.10 per user per month, which includes just the online (and more limited) versions of Microsoft Word, 50GB of email storage, and 1TB of file storage and sharing with OneDrive.

For the full Microsoft Office experience (with PC/Mac, tablet and mobile phone installations), this is priced from £7 per user per month without email, and £7.80 per user per month with email including 50 GB of email storage.

Adding the latest version of Microsoft Access, the package prices increases to £10.10 per user per month under the Office 365 ProPlus plan. This also includes 1TB of storage.

Software breakdown

Here is a quick breakdown of the two solutions:


Both applications can be installed on smartphones and tablets (both Apple devices and Android), and with G Suite you can use Docs, Sheets and Slides without internet access. However, everything in Google is online-based, which makes it really flexible – it is designed to allow for remote working and collaboration with others. Because it is all online, it can be used on as many devices as needed for each login.

Office 365 on the other hand has the option of the full Microsoft Office package, which allows users to install the full Office suite on up to five PCs/Macs, five smartphones, and five tablets – though only if you pay for the more expensive £7 per user per month tier. Office 365 will also sync, and as your package is available across up to 15 different devices, it’s important that they are connected to the internet whenever you make any changes, to avoid loss of information.

Both Office 365 and the G Suite offer full support packages for users, including telephone support and live chat.

Any work you do offline will be synced to the online versions – both G Suite and Office 365 will automatically update your files for you. It will also automatically update your calendar, contacts and email.

Both solutions offer practical and affordable cloud-based solutions for users, though G Suite is becoming more and more popular, particularly with small businesses and companies with younger employees, who are used to using Google for their personal files.

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Claire Lickman

Claire is Head of Marketing at Happy. She has worked at Happy since 2016, and is responsible for Happy's marketing strategy, website, social media and more. Claire first heard about Happy in 2012 when she attended a mix of IT and personal development courses. These courses were life-changing and she has been a fan of Happy ever since. She has a personal blog at

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