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Selecting Home Office Software
When choosing software for your home office, there are several factors you must consider:
- Your software must be licensed for commercial purposes. For example, Microsoft Office Home and Student is not licensed for business use even though it's by far the most affordable Microsoft Office product.
- The software must allow you to send and receive files in useable formats. Choosing a program that's not compatible with your client's software is definitely not going to build your business.
- The program must be easy to use. Saving money on software is pointless if you're going to be wasting precious working time trying to figure out a complicated program.
Keeping in mind the above criteria, Kingsoft Office is an excellent resource for the frugal home based business owner.
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About Kingsoft Office
Even though they're not a major player in the United States, Kingsoft is one of the premier software companies in China. Founded in 1989, Kingsoft focuses heavily on research and development to create innovative software designed to enhance user productivity.
Kingsoft Office, better known in China as WPS Office, contains:
- Kingsoft Writer, an equivalent to Microsoft Word
- Kingsoft Presentation, an equivalent to Microsoft PowerPoint
- Kingsoft Spreadsheets, an equivalent to Microsoft Excel
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Advantages of Kingsoft Office
- The user interface is virtually identical, so no extra training is needed if you're already familiar with Microsoft Office.
- By default, Kingsoft Office saves your files in the appropriate Microsoft Office compatible format.
- Files created in Microsoft Office open quickly and easily within Kingsoft Office, meaning you should have no trouble collaborating with colleagues who are using other software for their business activities.
- The program's small size makes it fast and extremely responsive. By using less memory for your basic office functions, you'll help keep your computer in top condition even if you're working with slightly older equipment than you'd prefer.
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Disadvantages of Kingsoft Office
- Kingsoft Office 2009 works with Windows 2000, XP, 2003, and Vista, but not Macintosh computers.
- If you're a big fan of Microsoft Outlook, you'll notice that Kingsoft Office includes no email and contact management software.
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Try It for Yourself
A 100 day free trial is available from the Kingsoft Web site, so you'll have plenty of time to see if this program meets the needs of your home based business. At the end of your trial period, you can buy the program for $69.95. This license is only good for one computer, however. You'll need to contact the company directly if your business requires multiple licenses.
If you're trying to keep things as bare bones as possible during the start up phase of your entrepreneurial endeavors, keep in mind that the company is working on plans to implement a free release of Kingsoft Office 2007.
Kingsoft Office: A Resource for Frugal Entrepreneurs
This series will explore how Kingsoft Office can assist the home based entrepreneur by providing basic office productivity features at a fraction of the cost of Microsoft Office.