Microsoft is not only the pioneer of mass produced Operating System (OS) we call Windows, but it is also among the pioneers of office productivity software. The company was so confident about its offering that it even named its suite of software as Microsoft Office.
The highly capable suite of productivity software was designed as a do it all sort of package. As MS Office was designed for hardcore office productivity, the applications were more inclined towards features and functionality, rather than user friendliness.
For this reason, ever since the platform became common among users, its learning curve has been fairly steep. Without proper training or guidance, it is really difficult to extract the type of functionality this platform is capable of. As the needs of office productivity have gained complexity, Microsoft has strongly delivered.
The Drawback of Microsoft Office Suite
When it comes to core functionality, it is really difficult to find any notable flaw or missing feature is Microsoft’s highly capable suite of office productivity applications. It comes fully equipped with a dedicated word, data, email and presentation management solution.
Perhaps the only notable shortcoming of Microsoft Office Suite is not related to functionality, rather it’s the exorbitant price tag that puts us off as users. This by no means implies that the solution is overpriced in any way, rather many other factors contribute to making it appear a non viable option.
It won’t be wrong to say that most users don’t even use ten percent of the theoretical functionality offered by MS Office. This raises a somewhat valid objection in the minds of users as to why should they be paying for most of those features and functionalities which they won’t be using at all.
Most users of MS office will either be totally unaware of advanced features or won’t need them altogether. Hence, it makes little sense in paying a hefty sum for a suite of applications that you will not even use. The underutilized functionality of this platform makes its price appear unjustified.
Zero Charge Alternatives
In addition to the underutilized functionality, wide availability of free office productivity software has also motivated users to switch to free alternatives. Let’s give due credit to Microsoft here because most of these free platforms use MS Office Suite as the benchmark for functionality, performance, reliability and features.
Free Alternatives to MS Office Suite
Although the actual number of alternatives may be much higher, we will however focus this post on some of the most feature rich, cross compatible and above all, free office productivity software. The seven best software for office productivity are listed below:-
Please note that these office applications are in no particular order and must be considered based on your unique needs. The common factor in these solutions is being free, which offers you the luxury of switching over easily. In the below table, we will try to summarize the feature set of each solution to make your selection easier.