Office 365 is a relaunch of Microsoft’s clumsily named Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). The basic Office 365 package is a hosted version of the 2010 versions of Exchange, SharePoint, Office Communications Online and Live Meeting – the last two of which have become one and are now known as Lync. More interesting though are the additional Office Software Online options that it brings. You can have online web apps at a small extra cost, and for a bit more subscribe to full Microsoft Office. It comes in 3 different plans office 365 for enterprise, office 365 for small business and office 365 for learning.
Microsoft SharePoint Online is a collaboration, sharing, and document editing service using internal and external sites. It can also be used to create public-facing Web sites. On the other hand Microsoft Exchange Online is an email, calendar and contacts solution delivered as a cloud service, hosted by Microsoft. The service is based on Microsoft Exchange server and offers 25 GB of email storage per user.
Office Web Apps are browser-based versions of Microsoft Excel, Word, and PowerPoint that enable viewing and lightweight editing of Office documents in Web browsers while preserving the formatting of the original documents.
Google Apps is a service from Google providing independently customizable versions of several Google products under a custom domain name. It features several Web applications with similar functionality to traditional office suites, including Gmail, Google Groups, Google Calendar, Talk, Docs and Sites.
As it has already been mentioned, Office 365 includes hosted e-mail, calendars, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, SharePoint and Lync. Google Apps for Business includes hosted e-mail, calendars, a word processor, presentations, drawings, a Website and video storage. Office 365 is not to be confused Office Web Apps on Skydrive (previously known as OfficeLive), the freebie cloud service which offers versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote for Windows Live users. The biggest feature of Office 365 that is not available with Google Apps would be Microsoft Office,” Jennings says. Because Office 365 replicates many of the features found on on-premises versions of Microsoft Office, documents can move from the cloud to the desktop and back without losing formatting. Although it comes with a cost; to continue using all the features of office, users have to pay for the client side versions either through some kind of traditional license or through an Office 365 option called Office Professional Plus.
Google has no such license requirements. Google Apps is a true cloud-based solution which means it was designed to provide full featured experiences on any device or operating system, Office 365 has a limited feature set in the cloud, and is designed for PCs running Windows OS. Office 365’s web apps rely heavily on Microsoft technologies like ActiveX, Silverlight and .Net framework.