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Google have promised new customers free use of their Google Apps while they wait for their contract with current productivity suite provider to expire.

The search giant will cover the cost of using Google Apps for those currently contracted to IBM Lotus, Zoho and Microsoft Office 365.

Google have also agreed to pitch in with an undefined amount of money towards setting up the software-as-a-service (SaaS) suite.

They have assured enterprises that these offers will be completely free and contain no “traps” or “gotchas”. They also believe they will save businesses a lot of money doing this.

However, this promotion only currently applies to customers in the US – with plans to roll out globally within the next few months.

Office 365 still dominant

The marketing ploy is sure to increase the competition between its main rival Microsoft. A recent study carried out by Bitglass found that Microsoft’s productivity suite - Office 365 – is the most popular one. It is used by 25% of companies, while only 22.8% use Google Apps.

Another study carried out by Okta proclaimed Office 365 to be the most commonly deployed cloud-based application in the world as well. It found that since Satya Nadella took his position as Microsoft’s CEO, they have embraced the cloud and gradually gained popularity to surpass Google Apps as the most popular email application.