Microsoft 365 (M365) vs Google Workspace Made Simple: What You Need To Know

m365 and google workspace price vs security comparison

Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) vs Microsoft 365-which is better? This is a question that many businesses, particularly startups, struggle to answer. In this blog, we will compare the two productivity suites in terms of price and security and let you decide which is the best.

What do Microsoft 365 (MS 365) and Google Workspace do?

Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 (MS 365) are two popular productivity suites that offer a range of tools and services that let you perform common business tasks for businesses and organizations. 

These include:

  • sending emails
  • managing calendars
  • creating documents, spreadsheets, and presentations
  • video conferencing
  • file management
  • team collaboration

Both products recently underwent name changes; Microsoft 365 was previously called Office 365, and Google Workspace was formerly known as G Suite (and, prior to that, ‘Google Apps’).

Pricing: How do Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 compare?

The pricing structure for Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 differs by territory but is broadly comparable from one country to another.

For the purposes of this comparison, I’m looking at the plans priced in US Dollars, but my comments apply to 365 vs Workspace in general. Let’s look at Google Workspace pricing first.

Google Workspace pricing

First, let’s look at the pricing for Google Workspace which is divided into two families; Business and Enterprise families. The Business family has the basic plan, known as Business Starter, which starts at $6 per user per month and includes access to Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Drive for storage and document creation. The next tier, Business Standard, includes additional features such as video conferencing and team messaging and starts at $12 per user per month. Finally, the Business Plus plan starts at $18 per user per month and includes enhanced security features and greater storage capacity. The Enterprise Family on Google Workspace offers more business solutions including flexible storage options, enterprise-grade video conferencing features, and our most advanced security and compliance. Google later introduced a Frontline plan that caters for field workers. It is a new Google Workspace license type that is specifically designed for field workers to meet their communication and collaboration needs so that they can access their resources, whether these resources belong to Google, such as Gmail, Drive, or Google Meet, and so on. : https://pawait.africa/google-workspace-prices-and-plans/

  • Business Starter — $6 per user per month
  • Business Standard — $12 per user per month
  • Business Plus — $18 per user per month
  • Enterprise Starter — $10 per user per month
  • Enterprise Standard— $20 per user per month
  • Enterprise Plus— $30 per user per month
  • Frontline— $5 per user per month
mS 365 vs Google workspace pricing
Google Workspace pricing

The key differences to watch out for between these plans are as follows:

  • Storage — this is limited to just 30GB per user on the ‘Business Starter’ plan; by contrast, the ‘Business Standard’, ‘Business Plus’ and ‘Enterprise’ plans give you 2TB, 5TB, and unlimited storage respectively per user. The ‘Frontline’ plan gives a maximum of 2GB of storage. 
  • User accounts: the “Business Starter,” “Business Standard,” and “Business Plus”  plans all cap the number of use” ‘seats’ at 300; if you want more user accounts, you have to purchase an ‘Enterprise’ plan. The ‘Frontline’ plan has no user limit.
  • Video calls — you can have 100 participants on a call using the ‘Business Starter’ and ‘Frontline’ plans, 150 with ‘Business Standard’ and 500 with ‘Business Plus’ and ‘Enterprise.’ (All plans let you record calls, but ‘Business Plus’ lets you record video and track attendance; ‘Enterprise’ plans go one further again by giving you noise cancellation and in-domain live streaming features).
  • Security features — on the ‘Business Plus’ and ‘Enterprise’ plans you get significantly more security features. These include ‘Vault’, a tool for retaining and searching your users’ data, and endpoint management, which gives you more control over how users can access Google Workspace features and data across different devices.
  • Searching features — all plans except the ‘Business Starter’ and ‘Frontline’ plans give you access to a ‘smart search’ tool called ‘Google Cloud Search’. This functionality makes it easier to locate files within an organization’s Google Workspace storage.
  • App creation — if you’re on the ‘Enterprise’ plan, you get access to Google’s ‘AppSheet’ tool. This is a ‘no-code’ tool that aims to let you build mobile and web apps without coding.

Microsoft 365 (MS 365) pricing

They are significantly more complicated because there are home, business, enterprise, government, non-profit, and education versions available—and many sub-versions within these!

This means there’s a lot of flexibility, but it’s rather confusing to trawl through all the plans to work out which one is best suited to your requirements. In this comparison, I’m going to focus on the Microsoft 365 plans, which are geared towards small business and enterprise users.

These are the following:

Small businesses (SMEs)

MS 365 prices
Microsoft 365 pricing

The Microsoft ‘Business’ plans are aimed at small or new businesses and are priced accordingly. There are four plans available:

  • Microsoft 365 Business Basic — $6 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 Apps for Business — $8.25 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 Business Standard — $12.50 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium — $22.00 per user per month

Enterprise

  • Microsoft 365 E1 — $10 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 E3 — $23 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 E5 — $38 per user per month
  • Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise — $12 per user per month

The main things to note about these plans are as follows:

  • To get the best value out of Microsoft 365, you need to pay annually. Each 365 ‘Business’ plan comes in a couple of dollars more expensive if you pay monthly, and with the ‘Enterprise’ plans, there’s no option to do so. By contrast, all the Google Workspace pricing is based on a per-month basis, which may suit some organizations a bit better — for example, those with regular changes in the number of staff, or those using contractors.
  • Storage varies by plan. The Business plans all provide 1TB storage per user, but depending on the plan and the number of users involved, the Enterprise ones can give you 5TB. —; for example, you could use 300 Business Standard licenses, 300 Business Premium licenses, and 100 Enterprise E3 ones within the same organization.
  • Not all plans provide you with installable versions of the Microsoft Office product suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) — the ‘Business Basic’ plan only gives you access to the mobile and online versions, and the E1 plan restricts you from using the browser-based version.
  • Not all of the 365 plans provide users with an email account — if you want to use Microsoft 365 as your email service provider, you’ll need to avoid the Business and Enterprise ‘Microsoft 365 Apps’ plans.
  • You can only avail of a fully functional version of Microsoft Stream — its video collaboration service — on the Enterprise plans (all except the ‘Apps for Enterprise’ plan include it).

As you can probably see by now, although it’s helpful to get an idea of the pricing of both Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace, there are so many different plans available that a pricing comparison is not going to give you the clearest answer on which of these tools is best for you: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/business/compare-all-microsoft-365-business-products

While Google Workspace and Microsoft are both top contending platforms for business teams, the ease of use, security, and other cloud-based features that come with Google Workspace typically make it the top choice for organizations. Google Workspace can provide endless benefits for your team, including improved collaboration, refined processes, and increased productivity.

Google Workspace vs Microsoft 365 Security Comparison

In terms of security, both Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 offer robust security features to protect your data and keep your business information safe.

How secure is Google Workspace? 

Built with cloud security in mind, Google Workspace has customizable protection that meets many compliance requirements for global organizations. Additionally, they have transparency, analytics, and other tools that give you the ability to always know what’s happening with your data. 

Google Workspace uses advanced encryption and security protocols to keep your data secure and offers 24/7 support and backup services. Microsoft 365 also offers robust security measures, including data encryption and access controls, as well as 24/7 support and backup services. 

Google Workspace has a range of security measures in place to protect your data, including data loss prevention (DLP), encryption, and two-factor authentication (2FA). Its DLP tools can automatically detect sensitive data, such as credit card numbers, and prevent it from being shared outside of your organization. Its encryption technologies ensure that data is secure while in transit and at rest, and its 2FA adds an extra layer of security to user accounts.

 

Enabling enforced 2FA

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Another key security feature of Google Workspace is its security audit logs, which allow you to track any access to your data and identify any potential security threats. This can be useful for ensuring that your data is only accessed by authorized individuals and can help you quickly respond to any security breaches.

Recently, Google added VirusTotal to, an investigation tool that gives additional security insights related to Gmail and Chrome log events. VirusTotal is only available for Enterprise, Education Standard and Education Plus plans. VirusTotal provides threat context and reputation data to help analyze suspicious files, URLs, domains, and IP addresses to detect cybersecurity threats. VirusTotal reports provide many crowdsourced details on why a domain, file attachment, or IP address might be considered risky. 

How Secure is Microsoft 365 (MS 365)?

In terms of security, Microsoft 365 offers a range of features to help protect your data and ensure that it is only accessed by authorized individuals. For example, Microsoft 365 includes two-factor authentication, just like Google Workspace. This added layer of security can help prevent unauthorized access to your data. Microsoft 365 also offers encrypted data storage and transmission, so that your data is protected even when it is being transferred between devices.

M365 also offers DLP, encryption, and 2FA, but it takes security a step further with its Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) feature. This uses machine learning algorithms to detect and prevent potential threats, such as malware and phishing attacks before they can reach your data. It also provides a variety of compliance tools, such as data governance and retention policies, to assist you in complying with industry regulations.

In terms of data recovery, Google Workspace offers a few options, including the ability to restore deleted files from the Trash folder, as well as a Vault feature for archiving and eDiscovery. MS 365 also has a Vault feature, as well as the option to restore deleted files from the Recycle Bin, but it also offers the ability to restore entire sites or SharePoint libraries if necessary.

Microsoft 365 Security FeaturesGoogle Workspace Security Features
Data encryptionData encryption
Microsoft cloud security technologyGoogle cloud security protection
Data loss preventionData loss prevention (DLP)
Multi-factor authenticationTwo-step verification
Built-in spam, malware, and unusual activity detectionBuilt-in spam, phishing and unusual activity detection
99.9% financially backed uptime guarantee99.9% application availability guarantee

Both Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 offer robust security features, including data encryption and access controls. When it comes down to security, nothing is said or done until it is all put to the test. So how exactly do these productivity suites stack up against each other in real-world cases when it comes to security? Let’s take a look at some of the most recent security attacks:

  • SolarWinds Hack – Technology firm SolarWinds was the subject of a massive cybersecurity attack that spread to the company’s clients over months of being undetected. Major firms like Microsoft and top government agencies in the US such as the Department of Defence were attacked, and sensitive data was exposed. The number of organizations affected totaled 18,000. This came as a result of installing updates that left them vulnerable to hackers.

  • Hafnium Hack – The Hafnium hack comprised a global wave of cyberattacks and data breaches after four zero-day exploits were discovered in on-premises Microsoft Exchange Servers. This gave hackers full access to: 

    • User emails and passwords on affected servers.

    • Administrator privileges on the server.

    • Connected devices on the same network.

How Does Google Workspace Keep Your Data Safe?

Google is 100% Cloud-native, which means it is always up-to-date and secure. Google Workspace provides a born-in-the-Cloud communication and collaboration experience that’s accessed directly from the web browser, allowing people to work safely from any device.

It is a more reliable compliance suite that you can trust compared to other alternatives. This is because Google reduces the risk with intelligent insights, offering 99.9% accuracy when it comes to blocking spam and compromising emails. 

It helps users stay protected proactively, with a reporting of zero detected or hijacked accounts after security keys were deployed in organizations. For our customers that really want to take security seriously, we will always recommend utilizing these.

Centralized management also allows simple control for administrators, with Google now managing over 110 million devices.

Conclusion

Ultimately, the choice between Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 comes down to your business needs and preferences. If you prefer a cloud-based platform and are looking for a range of collaboration and communication tools, Google Workspace may be the best option for you. If you prefer the flexibility of on-premises deployment and need access to a wide range of applications, Microsoft 365 may be a better fit.

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