Microsoft Word is by far the most popular word processor in the world. Although it is outrageously expensive with a price of $99 up to $429 (U.S.) for a version bundled with other office applications, a lot of people would never dream of switching to another product, especially if the other product is FREE.
That attitude always amazes me. I stopped using Microsoft Word about 20 years ago and switched to various free word processors. They varied in quality, as might be expected, but several of them met or even exceeded all my needs. I cannot imagine that I will ever go back to the Microsoft product.
This week I downloaded and installed a new product (at least, it is new to me) called ONLYOFFICE. I have only used it for a few hours, including for writing this article, but so far it has been a perfect replacement not only for Microsoft Office but also for Excel and for PowerPoint. In addition, it incudes a form creator, a PDF reader and converter, an email program, a rather simple but nice customer relationship management (CRM) program for sales management and productivity improvement, project management software for excellent team performance, and a calendar program for organizing and managing all the events in you life.
In short, ONLYOFFICE is a powerful online editor for text documents, spreadsheets, and presentations for the platform you use.
Yes, that’s right: platforms (with an “S”). The software is available for Windows, Linux, Macintosh and (sometimes with slightly simpler versions) for Android and Apple iOS systems.
Best of all is the price: ranging from FREE for personal use up to several thousand dollars for use by hundreds of individuals in a corporate office environment. The pricing is a bit complex so I will refer you to the ONLYOFFICE web site at https://www.onlyoffice.com/ for all the details.
So far, I have only used the free versions and doubt if I will ever upgrade to the paid versions.
ONLYOFFICE headquarters are located in Riga, Latvia so all documents created by ONLYOFFICE are fully compliant with the European and North American General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) acts. Along with the main office in Riga, there are offices in London and Dallas. Besides, the company also has a wide community of project contributors all over the world. All software is open source.
Most of the various applications in ONLYOFFICE are available in two versions : one that is installed in the user’s computer and a second version that is installed in a central server (such as in the cloud) that can be used simultaneously by dozens or even hundreds of users.
Describing all the features of ONLYOFFICE is a task that is beyond me. My plan for this article is to simply give you a taste of the product’s primary features and then refer you to the company’s web site at https://www.onlyoffice.com/ for all the details. That web site has thousands of words, images, and videos that describe the various features far better than I can. The same web site even includes a number of online tutorials explaining how to install and use the various software products. After all, describing ALL the features and functionality of this impressive suite of programs would fill dozens of these newsletters.
Am I impressed with ONLYOFFICE? You bet I am.
If you are interested in switching to a more powerful and sometimes FREE suite of office software products, one that has MORE functionality than Microsoft Windows, I suggest you go to https://www.onlyoffice.com/ and start reading. Make sure you have lots of time available; it will require all that time to become familiar with the ins and outs of these products!