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Free Alternatives to Common Software

Our computers are full of different types of software. Some of this software comes standard with our computer, and others we purchase and install onto our computers ourselves. But purchasing computer software is not cheap, and we can end up spending a fortune on software we may not even use that often.
Luckily there are free versions that mimic the expensive software we buy for our computers. And guess what? These free versions of software actually work just as good as the expensive ones, so there should be no fear of sacrificing quality to keep some money in your pockets.
Below are a few examples of free alternatives to some of the most commonly used computer software.

Use Google Docs instead of Microsoft Office

If you haven’t already signed up for a Google account, you need to do so. With the free Google account, you will have access to all of Google’s other free services, which includes their Google documents.
Google Docs allow you to create a document, spreadsheet, presentation, form, drawing or table, so you will have all the same options as you would with Microsoft Office. All of your Google docs are automatically saved, so there is no worry about losing documents if you crash in the middle of a project. The spell checker in Google docs is also much better than that found in Office because it uses popular keywords used in Google searches to determine its list of correct spellings (plus, it actually checks grammar). Google documents can also be accessed anywhere there is an Internet connection, so there’s no need to use flash drives to access a saved document. Plus, you can also share documents among multiple people simply by clicking a Share button and delegating it to other individuals, so there’s no need to send documents via email ever again.

Use TurboCash instead of QuickBooks

If you use QuickBooks for accounting purposes, you could opt to use TurboCash instead. TurboCash is free accounting software that allows users to manage accounts payable and accounts receivable as well as generate checks and distribute invoices. Basically, everything that QuickBooks can do, TurboCash can also do.

Use PDF Creator instead of Adobe Acrobat

PDF Creator is a free software that allows users to create or read PDFs from any program without needing Adobe Acrobat. Users can also digitally sign PDFs to ensure they don’t become modified, as well as encrypt the PDFs so they can’t be printed.

Use Seashore/GIMP instead of Photoshop

If you want to alter or edit pictures or images, you should download Seashore/GIMP instead of purchasing Photoshop. It supports .tiff, .png and .jpeg files and allows users to fully edit files the same way they would in Photoshop, including cropping, changing colors, changing effects, etc.
So before you go out and purchase an expensive software to place on your computer, first check to see if there is a free version of a similar software that you can use instead. You may just find that the cheaper version is easier to use, and of course you’ll enjoy the extra cash you now have on hand.

Charlie Adams is a tech guru and internet expert who works as a consultant to telecommunications companies in the Las Vegas area.

13 thoughts on “Free Alternatives to Common Software

  1. It’s true some software are very expensive. Google docs is best to store data. Google docs can also be accessed anywhere there is an Internet connection and we can share documents with other people.
    These free software are best, specially for students. I use PDF reader to read PDF documents. But I’ve never tried GIMP.
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  2. Hey Charlie, I agree with you here. I am in a profession where using online tools are a part of my daily chores. And the free online tools are more easy to use and explore as compared to the paid one. Beside Google Doc, some other free tools for SEO experts are Google analytics, Rank checker, etc.

  3. Google Docs allow you to create a document, spreadsheet, presentation, form, drawing or table and so i feel google docs are very good than microsoft because Google docs saved our documents automatically.

  4. Great post! Yeah, you can use alternatives to common softwares. Like use google docs instead of spread sheet. Many alternative softwares are available on the internet. Thanks for sharing this post.
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  5. This is a very good idea for a post. People seem to be “stuck” with heavy and expensive software but they actually have a variety of them that can get the job done. A brilliant example is GIMP and Photoshop. Photoshop is expensive and complicated, but is used for all things, small or big. GIMP can get the job done easily and completely free.
    Give it a thought, it is worth it.
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