LibreOffice’s developers are claiming that over than 80 million individuals have already downloaded their newest open source suite release worldwide. After being out of the limelight for some time, LibreOffice renewed their drive in overthrowing Microsoft Office with their latest version of applications. The 80 million users are enough proof that the said LibreOffice is a worthy contender against Microsoft Office Suite.
LibreOffice main roots began when Oracle bought Sun Microsystems in 2010, which was the developer of OpenOffice. However, original developers didn’t agree on the stewardship of Oracle on the project, thus leading to the creation of a new open source suite named LibreOffice. The previous OpenOffice project was then under the Apache Foundation, and LibreOffice was under The Document Foundation.
General Open Format
Executive members of The Document Foundation felt confident that LibreOffice will get 200 million users before the decade ends. Italo Vignoli, a founding member of The Document Foundation, said that the foundation hopes that the United Kingdom (UK) government will decide positively on the issue of adopting open source software. Recently, the UK finally approved an order that all existing and new office suites must be able to support a general open format to be called ODF. UK government officials stated the efforts in standardizing open source suite formats will significantly lessen costs that are associated with today’s expensive office suites.
Freedom of Choice
The UK government’s announcement will allow users to have the freedom to choose whatever office suite they want. Vignoli is hopeful that this positive step will help in also winning over all European governments to consider standardizing open suite sourcing. In a positive note, France has already integrated LibreOffice in almost half a million of computers while 120,000 desktops in Spain’s Valencia region are already using LibreOffice.
The big question now is whether LibreOffice‘s push will be strong enough to attract enough MS Office supporters. The competition between LibreOffice and Microsoft Office started several years ago and still, MS Office still seems to be having the stronger hold. Already a good number of individuals are currently saying that they need to escape from Microsoft Office’s shackles but it is easier said than done. According to the vice president of CloudOn Jay Zaveri, breaking free is difficult or somewhat impossible today because almost 800 billion documents all over the world revolve under Microsoft Office documents. He also added that recent efforts and achievements are certainly helping in aiming for standardization of the said open source suite in the future.