In this post and the video above I will take a look at some of the best free office suites. These are free alternatives to Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint and other Microsoft Office applications.
All of the free office suites included in this review have at least a word processor, spreadsheet and slideshow presentation application.
#1 Apache OpenOffice
OpenOffice has been around since 2000 when Sun Microsystems open-sourced the software. It was later donated to the Apache Foundation and renamed as Apache OpenOffice.
The suite comes with a word processor (Writer), a spreadsheet (Calc) and slideshow presentation application (Impress). Additionally it has a vector graphics editor (Draw), a mathematics application (Math) and a database management tool (Base).
OpenDocument is the default file format for OpenOffice, but it also supports Microsoft Office documents. The layouts and designs for the office programs are similar to its Microsoft Office counterparts. So if you are a MS Office user, it will be an easy transition.
OpenOffice is available for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android.
LibreOffice is a fork of OpenOffice. It has much of the same tools available (Writer, Calc, Impress, Draw, Math and Base) with some differences to its design and function.
The default file format of LibreOffice is also OpenDocument and the suite does also support Microsoft document formats.
The development cycle with LibreOffice is faster than OpenOffice, meaning it has more frequent updates.
LibreOffice is available for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android.
#3 Google Drive
Google Drive is a free online file storage service with the ability to create and edit documents in the cloud. Drive supports text documents, spreadsheets and slideshow presentations.
The Drive applications can be used in your web browser, allowing you to use Drive on any operating system. If you want offline access to your files, you can download the Drive app for Windows, Mac or Linux. Android apps are also available.
#4 SoftMaker FreeOffice
SoftMaker FreeOffice is a free office suite developed by German software company SoftMaker.
FreeOffice includes a word processor (TextMaker), a spreadsheet app (PlanMaker) and a presentation application (SoftMaker Presentations). One downside to FreeOffice is that you do have to register with SoftMaker to get a free license key.
SoftMaker has its own native formats but also supports OpenDocument and Microsoft file formats. The program suite is available for Windows, Linux and Android.