Google Is So Serious About Software, It's Charging for It

Google has been nibbling around the edges of Microsoft's huge Office market with free, low-end, Web-based software. Now, the online giant is kicking into high gear, with software that is actually worth money.

For $50 per person, per year, you can get an Office equivalent (or at the least the same basic range of apps) along with calendaring. And you get 10 gigs of Google storage. Whadda you think? Have you used earlier Google apps? Does this model make sense for corporate America? Let me know at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Not So Fast, Google
Before going gaga over Google's goods, keep in mind that Google has security holes like everyone else. Just last week, Google announced it had to fix a major hole in its Desktop Search tool (which I can't live without).

If left unpatched, the hole could let hackers see your files, like the password.doc file that holds all your passwords!

As for the Google productivity suite, I would be concerned about having my files stored remotely. If I'm going to lose all my work, I want it to be my fault!

No Surprise Here: Cuba Loves Open Source
Cuba is giving Microsoft the heave-ho and moving as fast as humanly possible (or as fast as a slow-moving communist government can) toward open source. Besides thumbing its nose at the capitalist Microsoft, Fidel apparently believes that Microsoft products present a real security threat, that somehow Redmond is in cahoots with the U.S. to spy on Cuba through secret software hooks.

Doug's Mailbag: Lost in Licensing
Microsoft recently made some improvements to its licensing tools, but that doesn't make licensing any less complicated. Here's one reader's take on the issue:

It's not just MS. I've been very recently through open license nightmares with Symantec and Adobe, too. I've have wasted over a dozen hours dealing with their corporate BS. I'm self-employed, and at my billing rate of $130 per hour, that equals a lot of un-billable time out of my pocket.

I'm done with open licensing.
-Anonymous

Here's your chance to speak out. Leave a comment below or contact me at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

About the Author

Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.

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