Microsoft Excel is one of the most popular computer applications, but as you may already be aware, it is not free. Microsoft Excel is just a spreadsheet tool, and over the years, several spreadsheet tools and software have been launched in the market. They are compatible with Excel and support additional features for spreadsheet that is not present in MS Excel. Even better, a lot of those substitutes are free of cost. But you may get confused about choosing among the available software. To reduce your confusion, here is a list of the ten top free Microsoft Excel alternatives that can be used by individuals and businesses:

1. Zoho Office Sheet

There are many reasons to consider Zoho Office Sheet as one of the greatest software. The first among them is an A.I powered analysis tool known as Zia. This tool analyzes the data and provides insights to make you understand better. Zoho Office Sheet (Free) is excellent spreadsheet software for a variety of other reasons as well. Zia removes errors and duplicate numbers, automates pivot tables, and creates visualizations that you can subsequently include in your spreadsheet. Additionally, the application allows you to “ask” questions about your data or perform filter-based analyses on the data to assist you in finding the solution.

Features
  • Zia, the in-built data analyst in Zoho Sheet, makes it simple to display complicated data. Zia can even answer questions you have about your data by presenting the results as charts or pivot tables. Another wonderful detail is the drag-and-drop feature.
  • Zoho Sheet, a sophisticated data cleaning tool, enables you to avoid manual cleanups. In just a few clicks, duplicates can be eliminated, and blank fields can be filled in.
  • You will get a full suite of cloud software like spreadsheets, CRM, marketing, and H.R. Zoho has got everything you need to run a business.

2. Google Docs Spreadsheet

Since you probably already use several Google products on a regular basis, you are most likely to have a Google account. In this situation, using the Google Docs Spreadsheet application won’t require any further work on your part. With the exception of being free and not requiring you to download anything, Google Docs Spreadsheet is essentially Google’s version of Excel. The Google Docs Spreadsheet resembles Excel quite a bit, but as you will see, it truly works in your web browser.

Features
  • Without downloading anything, you can edit your spreadsheets right in your browser.
  • Use Google’s file storage service (Google Drive) to store and distribute files.
  • It has wide compatibility as you can store your spreadsheets in a number of widely used file formats.

3. WPS Spreadsheet

WPS Spreadsheets is a component of yet another collection of web-based office applications. WPS Office can be downloaded for free, but there is also a premium version if you decide you want to upgrade. Since almost all office file types are compatible, WPS can support them all. Additionally, cloud-based WPS Spreadsheets back up all of your data. Your documents are synchronized between devices, even in the free version of WPS, so any changes you make are immediately visible.

Features
  • The WPS Office process is similar to that of Microsoft Office. With any problems, you may get started right away.
  • Instead of typing every word by hand, convert text images into PDF and word files. Obviously, this has little to do with spreadsheets, but if you frequently convert files for work, it’s a benefit.
  • With its advanced modeling, WPS Office Spreadsheets offers capabilities for what-if analysis for complicated data.

4. LibreOffice Calc

LibreOffice is a well-known open-source office suite that can be used for free. A whole range of tools is available in LibreOffice for use in daily documents, presentations, databases, and calculations-related work. Its Calc spreadsheet program is a respectable Excel substitute. Multiple languages, cross-platform compatibility, and a vast selection of third-party extensions are some of the special features.

Key features
  • You can download plugins to further personalize your spreadsheet processing experience.
  • It supports several file formats, and documents can be saved and opened in a variety of file formats.
  •  It has DataPilot data processing which helps to make a quick and efficient summarise of raw database data.

5. Microsoft Office Excel Online

Excel Online provides another opportunity if you are set on using it or want to give it a try but are not sure to spend the money. A browser extension can be installed to access Excel Online, a free cloud-based version of the software. Excel Online is one of a number of free web-based Microsoft Office applications are kept in OneDrive, Microsoft’s cloud version. The catch is that none of the apps provided here contain all the functionality found in the normal version. However, users can have access to all of the fundamental software functions and commands.

Features
  • Microsoft has been adding new features actively based on user feedback.
  • Though online Excel is a stripped-down version of its desktop version, it has many exciting features.
  • Apart from excel, you can use other MS office apps from online sources.

6. Calligra sheets

This spreadsheet and calculation program can easily build and calculate a variety of business-related spreadsheets. Calligra Sheets offers worksheet templates, formatting options, built-in functions, charts, and data sorting. It even offers Python, Ruby, and Javascript scripting. Originally developed for BSD, Linux, and Unix operating systems, Calligra now offers support for OS X and MS Windows.

Features
  • It supports a variety of Excel file formats, including XLS, Applix Spreadsheet, Quattro Pro, CSV, dBase, Gnumeric, SXC (OpenOffice.org XML), Kexi, and TXT.
  • Supports multiple sheets per document.
  • Features over 300 built-in features, including charts, spell-checking, hyperlinks, and data sorting.

7. Onlyoffice

For producing and editing spreadsheets, Onlyoffice is among the best free alternatives to MS Excel. You can even install it on containers that run Docker. This free office suite named OnlyOffice Docs includes a spreadsheet in addition to document and presentation editors. Excel files can be opened and modified without any problems because ONLYOFFICE Spreadsheet Editor’s native format is XLSX (OOXML (DOCX, XLSX, PPTX)). The application also accepts file types in the XLS, ODS, and CSV formats.

Features
  • Available in both the Cloud and Enterprise editions it can be saved as spreadsheets as PDFs and supports.xlsx,.xls,.ods, and.csv files.
  • Enables the creation of attractive graphs and educational charts. It includes mathematics, forms, and graphics, as well as utilizing Text Art.
  • Use the JavaScript language syntax to write your own macros and utilize plugins to expand the spreadsheet editing options.
  • You can get access to more than 400 formulas and functions for mathematical computations. Pivot tables, pre-built table templates, the ability to filter data quickly, and more.

8. Smartsheet

Smartsheet strength is its project management tools. Smartsheet users may quickly track their progress with the help of Gantt charts, file sharing, and collaborative tools. Free trial periods are available for users to try out the software. The portability of Smartsheet makes it simple to collaborate with peers, which is crucial while working remotely.

Features
  • You can centralize the data management by syncing the smart sheet.
  • Save time by programming the automatic workforce with the help of a simple interface.
  • Revise, review and discuss the produced content right on the platform.

9. EtherCalc

EtherCalc is a free, open-source web-based spreadsheet software that runs on many operating systems. The users can save the data on the web, grant editing permissions, and can have changed the users on a real-time basis. While EtherCalc is not considered a full-featured spreadsheet program, its functionality makes it one of the simplest applications.

Features 
  • You can take EtherCalc’s source code to host it on your own server.
  • Get quick access by creating and sharing online spreadsheets simply by visiting EtherCac’s webpage.
  • It has multi-platform compatibility.

10. Gnumeric

With its built-in capabilities and facilities, the open-source spreadsheet program Gnumeric can manage big spreadsheets easily. It has the ability to automatically analyze and categorize data into various data kinds. Pie charts, line graphs, radar charts, and other types of graphs can all be used to construct and present data plots. Numerous formatting choices are available in the Gnumeric spreadsheet application, allowing you to alter the font, background color, letter alignment, border, and more. 

Features
  • Users can also print spreadsheets, tables, and graphs in PDF or PostScript format.
  • Additionally, it is compatible with spreadsheet files created by MS Excel, Quattro Pro, and OpenOffice. 
  • Its other special features include workbooks, reminders, reports, and much more.

Final Thoughts

Things are not like before when MS Excel had total domination in spreadsheets. Today you can find many spreadsheet software that is more advanced and compatible, with the added advantage of using it free. According to your preference, you can choose any one of the top ten open source software given here.