5 unfastened alternatives to Microsoft Excel

Spreadsheets are part of the modern-day business global and meaning one day you’re going to must observe one. The styles of functions you want out of your spreadsheet software can vary, even though, with many users by no means coming near needing the sturdy features of Microsoft Office’s Excel.

Microsoft Office, which includes Excel, can be prohibitively highly-priced for those of us who are not accountants crunching numbers each day. You’re looking at paying $ ninety-nine 12 months for a business user, $6.99 a month for home use, or $149.99 for an Office Home and Student 2019 license.

If you do not have that sort of money, don’t need those sorts of features, or surely need to shop cash, there are many viable alternatives to Microsoft Excel, which can be to be had in the cloud and mounted to your laptop. Best of all, those options are free.

1. Google Sheets

Google Sheets is Google’s cloud-based totally solution to Microsoft Excel, and it’s able to do the good-sized majority of what the common Excel consumer wishes. It’s additionally hosted within the cloud and runs in a web browser, so it’s platform-independent and can be run on Windows, macOS, and Linux structures.

You by no means have to fear about dropping an unmarried calculation, both—Google Sheets saves the entirety in Google Drive, making a crashed computer of no difficulty to your vital statistics.

As with Google’s other workplace equipment, Sheets functions actual-time collaboration that lets a couple of customers edit a file at an equal time. Users can see the cursor position of other humans inside the report, see what they are doing as they’re doing it, and chat properly within the report window.

Advanced features that a few Excel users need are lacking, although, so if you’re an Excel strength person, it is a great idea to discover if the features you need are to be had earlier than migrating. There have also been suggested troubles of formulas in Excel spreadsheets breaking whilst they’re uploaded to Google Sheets, so be aware that you can run into troubles shifting.Xls or.Xlsx documents out of your computer to Sheets. On the plus side, scripting continues to be available in Google Sheets, though it is JavaScript-based totally and now not Visual Basic for Applications.

2. Microsoft Office Excel Online

Not to be outdone by way of Google, Microsoft has created its very own online version of Office, which incorporates a stripped-down model of Excel that is higher compared to Google Sheets than to the computing device version of Excel. It’s not to mention that Excel Online is unusable or no longer really worth your time—it’s simply extra like Excel than Google Sheets, so if you pick a familiar interface, you can need to choose Excel Online in preference to going the Google direction.

Recommending Excel Online to the common Excel person is pleasant—it does all of the fundamentals of the laptop version while including computerized cloud saving in OneDrive, and it has real-time collaboration equipment that Office 365 and 2019 lack. Excel power customers might also want to steer clean of Excel Online. Many of the features you rely on are long past, constrained, or read-only—there is no VBA scripting, no creating external data connections, no locate and replace, and no advanced charting features. All of those capabilities exist in Excel Online, but they are study-best.

3. Apache OpenOffice Calc

When I communicate with Windows customers who hate the look of Microsoft Office’s publish-2007 interface, I constantly suggest Apache OpenOffice. Calc, OpenOffice’s Excel alternative, does a good process looking and feeling much like Office 2003; that’s top-notch if you’d decide on a time before the Office ribbon.

Before the advent of the cloud and the dominance of Google’s online office tools, OpenOffice reigned supreme amongst those seeking out a free Microsoft Office opportunity. This is mainly real within the case of Calc, which retains the maximum of the important advanced capabilities of Microsoft Excel, albeit in barely one-of-a-kind bureaucracy in some instances.

If you’re an Excel power user thinking about migrating to OpenOffice, be sure to study the person manual—it’s going to help you figure out if the capabilities vital for your paintings are available in Calc; if they’re, you may have determined your new preferred program.

One fundamental drawback to OpenOffice is an issue with different loose platforms: A loss of cloud assist. There’s no native cloud connection or actual-time collaboration for Calc, so you could need to avoid this one if that is a deal-breaker.

4. LibreOffice Calc

Like OpenOffice, LibreOffice is a free workplace suite that includes its personal Excel alternative, Calc. It runs into the same restrictions as OpenOffice, in that LibreOffice Calc lacks cloud aid and actual-time collaboration. What LibreOffice does have is a pretty strong list of functions, a lot of which aren’t even found in Excel. LibreOffice has greater functions than Excel, can evaluate two separate spreadsheet documents, has greater cell formatting options, and can even cope with imports of legacy spreadsheets from retired applications (Microsoft Works, Lotus 1-2-three, BeagleWorks, Claris Resolve, and many others.) previously to be had on Windows and macOS.

There are right motives to offer LibreOffice a try to desirable reasons no longer to as properly, which encompass: It has restrained macro recording abilities, it cannot take care of outdoor statistics assets, it lacks the capability to display many advanced sorts of charts, and it cannot export documents as widely wide-spread XML.

5. WPS Office Spreadsheets

When it involves strong functions, which might be true competition for Excel, WPS Office Spreadsheets can’t be beaten with an appropriate purpose: It’s the simplest freemium product on this listing. WPS Office is surely a paid product. However, it does come with a completely-featured loose model with one seize—it’s advert-supported.

Don’t let that turn you off from giving WPS Spreadsheets a attempt—the ads are brief (generally lasting approximately 10 seconds), and most effective pop up when you try and print, save to PDF or use some of its other extra specific gear; after you watch an advert, that characteristic is unlocked for 30 minutes. If you decide to eliminate the advertisements in WPS Office, you want to pay $29.Ninety-nine a yr, or $79.Ninety-nine for a lifetime license. That’s lots less than Microsoft’s Office pricing.

WPS said it is 100% well-matched with Excel, which means it will open all Excel files successfully, support everything they contain, that means “you could open and edit spreadsheets from others, after which keep them right from WPS Office knowing others may be capable of open them without any troubles.”

If you’re approximately able to discover certain functions or want to make sure something you use is supported in WPS Spreadsheets, test out the Spreadsheets assist topic at the WPS website. I wasn’t capable of finding a handy chart of functions like with OpenOffice and LibreOffice. However, you should be capable of locating what you’re searching out using looking there.


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