Obviously we love Google Docs around here for its free storage, easy sharing and collaborative features. But while Google likes to boast every time it attracts a major corporate user, market research suggests that an enormous majority of businesses are still favouring Microsoft's Office suite.
In a presentation at Gartner's Infrastructure & Operations Data Centre summit in Sydney today, Gartner analyst Annette Jump noted that just 1% of Gartner clients were using Google Docs at the end of 2010. The most popular option? The aging (but ribbon-free) Microsoft Office 2003, which is still used by 57% of those asked, followed by 2007 with 39%. And even when Docs is chosen, it isn't necessarily a replacement, as Jump explained:
About 2% of businesses in the installed base are planning to run Google Docs by the end of this year. In many cases those are not run as a replacement for Office, but as an additional resource.
Obviously Gartner's client base — large enterprise users — is conservative in adopting new technologies, and those figures wouldn't include "unofficial" use of Google's services (or Microsoft's free online alternatives) by individual workers. Nonetheless, it's a sobering reminder that jumping to cloud-based apps isn't going to happen in a hurry, no matter how seemingly obvious the benefits.