Google (News - Alert) and Microsoft have been making bold claims of late in regard to their respective cloud productivity suites.
It started when Amit Singh, Google VP and head of its Enterprise unit, stated that Google Apps would soon grab up 90 percent of Microsoft (News - Alert) Office 365 users, claiming most don't need its advanced features or more importantly, its premium price.
Obviously, Microsoft wasn't about to take this lying down and has responded, with many executives from the company simply stating they're "not worried." A general manager in the company's business division, Julia White, believes Google "has not yet shown they are truly serious."
"From the outside, they are just an advertising company," she said.
This statement can be backed up by simple numbers: last year, Google's revenue from its five enterprise businesses totalled about $1 billion — a mere 4 percent of its total revenue. Most of that $1 billion apparently came from Google Apps. Microsoft, meanwhile, can be interpreted as being more serious because Office represents 90 percent of the revenue for its $24-billion Business Division.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has been fairly confident that its cloud business, which included Office 365, might be the biggest in world in terms of revenue, though the company has yet to release figures to back this up.
Despite White's words, though, Microsoft's recent actions tell a conflicting story as the company's COO, Kevin Turner, was urging partners to sell Office 365 at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in July.
Both Office 365 and Google Apps managed to secure major enterprise customers this year and it would seem the two cloud productivity offerings are practically on even ground.
Google may have relinquished its most important advantage, though, as the company has decided to begin charging for the small business version of Google Apps, which will continue to be free for new customers until 2013.
Because of this, there's a good chance Office 365 may be able to snag more SMB customers.
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Edited by Braden Becker