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Difference Between Microsoft Office and Lotus Symphony

Microsoft Office vs. Lotus Symphony

When it comes to productivity suites, Microsoft Office is still the biggest name due largely to Windows being the most popular operating system in use today. Although this doesn’t seem likely to change in the near future, there are some alternatives to Microsoft Office. One of these alternatives is Lotus Symphony from IBM. The main difference between the two is cost. While a copy of Microsoft Office costs quite a significant chunk, Lotus Symphony is absolutely free. You can just download it from IBM and use it without paying for anything.

Microsoft Office is the absolute best when talking about the amount of features that you get. Since Lotus Symphony is actually free, IBM doesn’t have as big a team as Microsoft does to develop the software. Although behind in features, Lotus Symphony still manages to do a majority of the document needs most people have.

Microsoft Office has an advantage over Lotus Symphony not just in features but also in the applications included. Lotus Symphony only includes the essentials; a word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation applications. Microsoft Office also has these but adds applications for note taking, diagramming, desktop publishing, project management, and an image viewer. Some of these additional applications may be available in lower packages while others are only available in more expensive packages.

When it comes to the operating system where you can use either software, Lotus Symphony has a slight advantage. The two software would work in Microsoft’s Windows and Apple’s Mac OS, but only Lotus Symphony would work in Linux operating systems natively. The only way to get Microsoft Office to work with Linux platforms is by emulation through Wine.

Lastly, Lotus Symphony has better support for the OpenDocument standard file format. Microsoft Office for Windows already has improved support for the format, but Microsoft is yet to add support for the Mac versions.

Choosing between the two comes down to how much you want to spend and what you really need. For simple word processing and other document work, Lotus Symphony can serve you well at no expense. For businesses with greater needs, it is probably worth it to spend for Microsoft Office for its features.


1.Lotus Symphony is a free software while Microsoft Office isn’t.
2.Microsoft Office is more comprehensive than Lotus Symphony.
3.Microsoft Office has more applications than Lotus Symphony.
4.Microsoft does not work on Linux while Lotus Symphony does.

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