Google targets Microsoft office users with free offers


In an attempt to turn Microsoft’s office software users to ‘Google for Work’ software, Google placed attractive offers including free usage, Associate Press reported Tuesday.

Google offered ‘Google for Work’ to companies and government agencies, which were paying for Microsoft’s suite of word processing, email, calendar, spreadsheet and other Office programs.

If they dump Microsoft, Google will give them free use of a package of its competing software that normally costs $5 or $10 per user each month. Google’s move is seen as an attack on Microsoft’s lucrative Office software.

The price for the “Google for Work” software will be waived for the duration of the defecting customers’ existing contracts with Microsoft or any other supplier. The offer is open for the next six months in the U.S. and will eventually be extended to other countries.

Google is limiting the free usage to 3,000 people per defecting customer. Even with that restriction, AP said, Google will be foregoing $180,000 to $360,000 in annual revenue if a company with 3,000 people signs up for the offer. As an additional incentive, Google will pay up to $75,000 to each company switching to its software to cover the costs of making the change.

Microsoft’s Office division generated $23.5 billion, or roughly one-quarter of the software maker’s revenue during its last fiscal year ending in June. The revenue includes sales of Office to consumers, too.