Google continues to make it impossible to determine whether its G Suite offering is succeeding in its battle against Office 365: The firm claimed this week that G Suite now has 6 million “paying businesses,” but Microsoft measures the success of Office 365 by monthly active users, not businesses.
News of G Suite’s surge—it claimed 5 million paying businesses about a year earlier—comes courtesy of Javier Soltero, who recently left Microsoft to take charge of Google’s stumbling business productivity offering. Soltero can’t take credit for G Suite’s sudden rise in paying customers, of course, he’s only recently arrived at the firm. But he’s been talking up his new gig with various publications and news outlets.
The publication Protocol, for example, used the old 5 million figure, but it also interestingly noted that Microsoft has 60 million paying Office 365 customers. (I’m not sure where they found that number, and have never seen Microsoft provide such a figure.) More recently, however, Soltero told CNBC that G Suite now has 6 million paying customers.
“The business of G Suite is growing at an incredibly healthy and, frankly for me, surprising rate,” he said, in a strangely contorted way. Google now counts free Gmail users who utilize its Docs and other online productivity services as “free G Suite users,” contrasting them with paid business customers. So it can sort of claim to have over 2 billion G Suite users, overall, though only a tiny, tiny percentage actually pay for it (or probably even use it).
In October 2019, Microsoft claimed that it had over 200 million active monthly users of its commercial Office 365 offerings. But that figure measures individuals within businesses, not the number of businesses that are paying for Office 365. But there are also over 37 million customers paying for Office 365 consumer as well.
Tagged with G Suite