Government picks Collabora for new Open Source desktop suite

The Crown Commercial Service has announced a new Open Source desktop suite as an alternative to Microsoft.

The new offering, Collabora GovOffice is based on LibreOffice from vendor Collabora Productivity, and is compatible with Google Docs and Microsoft Office (including Office 365).

It iis said to include comprehensive support for the latest version of Open Document Format, which is recommended by the Cabinet Office for use by government organisations, as well as as a "familiar interface" for creating documents, spreadsheets, presentations and more, Collabora GovOffice offers considerable cost savings compared to competing packages.

The Open Source software can complement or replace existing office applications and be used to extend the usefulness of other software packages, says the Service, while the forthcoming Collabora CloudSuite will extend Collabora GovOffice with Internet and mobile access for viewing and editing documents, and online access in web browsers.

Public sector IT managers will be able to deploy the cloud software locally, providing remote access to documents managed in controlled environments, adds the team.s

The deal covers both Collabora products, and applies to all non-profit making government organisations, including those working on behalf of government, either directly or via outsourcing. For more information please email softwarelicensing@crowncommercial.gov.uk

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