Corel previewed its office productivity suite at Comdex today, and announced that it would be renamed WordPerfect Office 2000.
This is the first version of the bundle to come out of Corel?s development work in Canada, rather than from the now disbanded WordPerfect team in Orem, Utah.
Michael Cowpland, Corel's president and chief executive, quoted recent data from ZD Market Intelligence, suggesting that the WordPerfect word processor is currently installed on 22 million PCs in the US, out of a total of 107 million PCs.
?That?s behind Microsoft Word, but not very much. And it?s up 10 percent over last year. We?re the clear alternative to Microsoft Office, and what?s even better, we?re back to sustained profitability,? he added.
Last quarter, Corel turned in its first operating profit in two years, but still lost $7.8 million after one-time charges. It turned over $71.1 million.
As reported earlier (see VNU Newswire, 13 November, 1998), WordPerfect Office 2000 will interoperate better with Microsoft Office and include new technology such as NetDocs, which means that all documents on a user?s hard drive can be converted to HTML and posted on the Web in one operation.
The WordPerfect 9 word processor, which is part of the suite, incorporates an ?autoscroll? function to enable users to scroll through a document with a pointing device, without having to drag the scroll bar. This should help them to navigate through documents with a non-mouse pointing device such as a touch pad.
The offering also provides realtime previews, showing the effect of a layout change (for instance, a change in font or in size) on the whole document before it is executed.
About 80 percent of the development for WordPerfect Office 2000 was done in Ottawa, Canada because the Orem, Utah facilities of WordPerfect are being closed down. There is still a small team working there until the WordPerfect Office 2000 launch is finished, however.
WordPerfect Office 2000 consists of WordPerfect 9, Quattro Pro 9, Corel Presentations 9 and Corel Presentations 9, with some editions also including Trellix 2.0.
Other applications comprise the Paradox 9 database, Corel Print Office and Dragon NaturallySpeaking voice recognition technology. The suite will ship in the second quarter of 1999, when Microsoft Office 2000 is also due. Pricing has not yet been announced.
Corel is also working on a Linux version of the suite, which is expected to be launched towards the end of 1999.
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