Google is finally ditching the legacy version of G Suite, forcing anyone using the free version to upgrade to a premium Google Workspace plan. The only users unaffected by this change would be nonprofits and educational institutions, who can continue to use Google Workspace’s free plans.
Starting May 1, 2022, Google’s collaboration, communication, and productivity tools will require subscription fees. Those who don’t have the budget will have to look elsewhere to get these services. So, to help those in need, here are the four best G Suite alternatives that you can use instead.
This suite of applications offers similar functionality to Google Workspace. You get email service with a custom domain, file management, productivity apps, communications, and even an online meeting space. Although they offer a 15-day free trial for the pro plan, you can choose to use their Forever Free plan if you don’t want to spend yet.
The free option lets you have up to five users in your workspace. Each user gets up to 5GB of storage space and a 25MB attachment limit. You also don’t have access to Zoho apps on your devices, so you’ll just have to use your browser.
Despite these limitations, it’s a great choice for new users and businesses that don’t have an extra budget to spend. And when it’s time to expand your operations, Zoho’s plans are affordable, just $1, $3, or $6 per user, per month.
This is another free collaboration and communication tool that you can use to replace G Suite. Although it doesn’t have its own productivity apps, you can integrate it with Google Docs or Microsoft 365, letting you choose which suite you’re most comfortable with.
A significant advantage you get with Bitrix24 is that its free plan has unlimited users. It’s perfect for those who work with others or who want to temporarily share their workspace with their clients. It also includes a website builder, allowing you to create your own business page for free.
The free plan is limited to 5 GB of shared space among all users. If you need more storage, you can upgrade to the Basic plan, which has 24GB for up to five users, or the Standard plan, which offers 100GB for up to 50 users. The top-tier professional plan allows you to have unlimited users again and increases your storage to 1TB.
Although Microsoft’s workspace collaboration tool only offers a one-month free trial, its apps, familiarity, and affordability make it a viable option over Google Workspace. The Business Basic plan includes the full web and app version of the Office suite, plus 1TB of OneDrive storage per user.
You also get 24/7 phone and online support, so you can solve any problem that may arise anytime, anywhere. You also get access to a 50GB inbox with a custom domain name, plus the full power of Microsoft Teams.
The Business Basic plan costs just $5/user/month, saving you $12/user per year compared to Google’s offering. You should note, however, that Microsoft will increase this amount to $6/user/month by March 1, 2022, making it the same cost as Google Workspace.
But if you want to install Microsoft’s desktop apps on your computer, you can upgrade to the Business Standard plan, which will cost you $12.50/user/month. This option costs $6/user/year more than the same offer from Google. However, Google does not offer desktop apps from its Google Docs suite.
If you’re already familiar with Google and don’t want to switch providers, you should consider subscribing to Google Workspace. Although the Business Starter plan is a little more expensive than Microsoft’s offer, it does offer a 30% discount to new users, saving you quite a bit of money.
For those looking for massive file storage like digital creative teams, the Business Standard plan offers 2TB cloud storage per user, double what Microsoft offers. Plus, your custom email domain is managed by Gmail, one of the most trusted and popular email services today.
It’s time to pay
After years of free use, Google Workspace now requires its users to invest in their services. So, unless you are a non-profit or an educational institution, you will have to pay a reasonable monthly amount to access it in May 2022.
Although this is an additional burden on your business operations, consider it an investment. After all, the value it offers is worth far more than Google is asking. And if in case you really can’t spare more, you can migrate to the other services listed above to keep your operation running smoothly.
Google Workspace is essentially G Suite 2.0. It’s an all-in-one tool for collaboration, communication and productivity.
About the Author