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Free Web-based Office Suites

This is interesting!
Study: 73% of Americans have never heard of Google Docs
A new survey by NPD has found that the 73% of Americans have never heard of Google Docs and other online office applications like Zoho or MS Office Suite.
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Source
“According to the study, 94 percent of US computer users have never tried a web based productivity suite. More than 20 percent say they’ve at least heard of Google Docs or other suites, but have still never tried them. And only 0.5 percent of users say they’ve replaced Microsoft Office with an online office suite.”
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I think that we’re just on the beginning of an adoption curve as we move to a software as a service, web-based model. I doubt that folks prefer to have to dowload applications and keep them up to date. My feeling is that we are moving inexorably towards hosted application models since they offer many benefits (short of the need for connectivity but what doesn’t require that anymore!).
For libraries these applications, especially since they tend to be interopable with licensed software document standards, allow us to ramp up what is offered on our public workstations to truly go beyond just bridging the digital divide. This is one opportunity that is quite inexpensive and libraries can get on the bandwagon before the crunch and show true value add to their users. Just imagine.
So do we plant the bulbs now or wait for the nurseries to grow plants and we plant them later. Our choice.
Stephen

Posted on: December 18, 2007, 9:09 am Category: Uncategorized