MS Office vs Open Office: Difference and Comparison

In the office software suites, Microsoft Office and Open Office are two distinct apps. Professionals select software packages based on the features required, the importance of the work, and, most significantly, the cost.

For each of these features, they always compare MS Office with Open Office. Microsoft Office is a suite of programs, servers, and services developed by Microsoft for the Mac and Windows OS X operating systems in 1989.

OpenOffice is accessible, free software that anyone on the market can download. 

Key Takeaways

  1. MS Office is a proprietary office suite developed by Microsoft, while Open Office is an open-source alternative created by the Apache Software Foundation.
  2. MS Office requires a paid license, while Open Office is free to download and use.
  3. MS Office dominates the market and is widely used in professional settings, while Open Office caters to users who prefer open-source software or require a cost-effective option.

MS Office vs Open Office 

Microsoft Office is a proprietary software suite developed by Microsoft, and it is available for purchase as a licensed product or through a subscription-based service. OpenOffice is a free, open-source software suite developed by the Apache Software Foundation. It is available for download and uses without any licensing or subscription fees.

MS Office vs Open Office

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Microsoft Office is a collection of Microsoft’s software applications, server software, and services. Bill Gates first revealed it on August 1, 1988, at the COMDEX trade show in Las Vegas.

Office programs have become much more integrated over time, with shared features like a common word processor, OLE data communication, and the Visual Basic for Applications. OpenOffice is open-source, free software that is freely available on the market.

Star Division created Open Office, formerly known as Star Office, as proprietary software, similar to MS Office. Apache OpenOffice comprises a presentation, spreadsheet, word processor, database management software, formula editor, and graphics.

OpenOffice’s primary file format is OpenDocument Format (ODF), although it is also able to read the files in MS Office format. 

Comparison Table

Parameters of Comparison MS Office Open Office 
Developer Microsoft  Sun Microsystems. 
Definition It is a suite of different applications, servers, and services. It is a suite of an open-source productivity software suite. 
Costs It can be expensive. Free of cost. 
Operating Systems Supports Windows and Mac platforms. Supports Windows, OpenVMS, Linux, Solaris, BSD, OS/2, IRIX. 
Components Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, InfoPath. Writer, Impress, Draw, Math, Base, Calculator. 
Support You can get professional support if you have a licensed program. You can get help from open forums online because it is open software. 

What is MS Office? 

Microsoft Company owns the software in its entirety. As a result, it is produced, tested, marketed, and sold with the commercial ability of the product in mind.

The company will set a price in the market that covers all of the expenses incurred by the product as well as earnings for business development. 

However, because it is designed by highly professional specialists and aims to compete for the best in the market, it has been proven to be fairly superior to other similar apps, and you will have to pay for installing Microsoft Office, or it comes pre-installed in the computers.  

MS Office is the greatest software accessible for professionals who require more features and advanced facilities, according to users. Microsoft Office is wholly designed, tested, promoted, and sold by Microsoft Corporation.  

MS Office began with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and has now grown to include Access, Outlook/Entourage, OneNote, Office Interconnect, Project, Visio, Publisher, SharePoint InfoPath, and Office Picture Manager.  

The doc format was established by Microsoft Word and has since become the de facto industry standard for storing types of documents on computers.

The new editions of Office 2007 began with a new XML-based structure (Docx). The Office system is accessible in several versions for different users.

The main targets for their audience are professionals and Students. MS Office charges a fee for its product based on the cost of the program plus profits.  

MS Office is regarded as the best product on the market for professionals that require more advanced features and capabilities.

The first version of Office was a marketing term for an office suite (a pre-packaged collection of productivity tools), and it contained Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. 

microsoft office

What is Open Office? 

Open office is a free piece of software that comes pre-installed on Linux PCs. It is created on a volunteer basis by many software developers in order to provide free software access to all. 

However, it is more difficult to operate with than MS Office, except in some areas where it may compete with MS Office.

Because many shortcuts and commands are similar in both applications, someone with adequate expertise working in an open office can do all general tasks quickly. 

Sun Microsystems purchased Star Division in 1999, and in 2000 Sun stated that the source code for Star Office will be made available for free download in order to foster an open-source development community for the software and as a free and open alternative to Microsoft Office. 

It has been renamed Sun Microsystems was bought out by Oracle in 2010, which continued to develop the program, which is now known as Apache OpenOffice.

The user interface of Open Office is similar to that of Microsoft Office 2003. OpenOffice supports over 120 languages. 

Version 4 of Open Office will be the next major release, and it will include technologies from IBM’s Lotus Symphony suite. Microsoft Office offers applications such as Calc, Writer, Impress, Draw, Base, and Math. 

However, one disadvantage of OpenOffice is that it has fewer functions than MS Office, which has a far larger feature set. Users will also find it challenging to transition from MS Office to OpenOffice due to the layout differences.

Although many people have said that Open Office Impress is far superior to MS Office PowerPoint. 

Main Differences Between MS Office and Open Office 

  1. MS Office was developed by Microsoft, and Open Office was developed by Sun Microsystems. 
  2. MS Office is a productivity suite consisting of different applications, servers, and services. On the other hand, Open Office is a suite of the open-source productivity software suite. 
  3. Open Office is free of cost, while MS Office has to be purchased. 
  4. MS Office supports Windows and Mac platforms, whereas Open Office supports Windows, OpenVMS, Linux, Solaris, BSD, OS/2, IRIX. 
  5. MS Office consists of Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, InfoPath, etc. Open Office consists of Writer, Impress, Draw, Math, Base, Calculator, etc. 
  6. With MS Office, you can get professional help, whereas, with Open Office, you can get help from online forums. 
Difference Between MS Office and Open Office



Last Updated : 13 July, 2023

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