Microsoft Office is by far the most comprehensive suite of productivity services around, but what if you own a small business with bare-bones requirements for word processing and spread sheets? AllThingsD reports that HP is teaming up with Google to promote Google Apps as a free alternative for companies that don’t want to pay Microsoft fees to use Office. HP “will package [Google’s] management tools with its PCs, printers and other IT gear” while helping companies ease into using Google Apps with an assist from its own management software, AllThingsD says. The move toward Google Apps comes at a time when HP has been inching away from Microsoft a bit, as this year the company has launched new devices based on Google’s Chrome and Android operating systems.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.