Question of the Day [Updated]: What is the maximum number of cells in a Google spreadsheet?

Mar 23, 2020
Question of the Day, Career

Answer: 5 million (up from 400,000 when this question was answered 4 years ago)


  • Why do you think companies consider spreadsheet skills so important for their employees? 
  • What has been your experience with spreadsheets? What problems have you been able to solve using them? 
  • What are the advantages of using spreadsheets for calculations?

Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.

Behind the numbers (Gsuite): 

Google Spreadsheets are extremely powerful and convert very well from Excel, but they do have some limitations:

  • Up to 5 million cells for spreadsheets that are created in or converted to Google Sheets
  • 40,000 new rows at a time
  • Maximum number of columns of 18,278 columns
  • Number of Tabs: 200 sheets per workbook
  • GoogleFinance formulas: 1,000 GoogleFinance formulas
  • ImportRange formulas: 50 cross-workbook reference formulas
  • ImportData, ImportHtml, ImportFeed, or ImportXml formulas: 50 functions for external data
  • Maximum string length is 50,000 characters


Looking for activities to build your students' spreadsheet skills? Go to tab 4 on this Math Resources spreadsheet.



About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.