Corel Drops Mac WordPerfect

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This is the way WordPerfect ends--not with a bang, but with a whimper. Corel quietly announced Friday that it will no longer develop the word processing program for the Mac. Instead, Corel plans to put its Mac efforts into its growing portfolio of graphics products.

Corel's decision hardly comes as a surprise. The last upgrade to WordPerfect, version 3.5, hit the shelves roughly four years ago. Corel released an enhancement pack to WordPerfect in 1997. Technical support for the product ended last year.

The reason Corel decided to drop WordPerfect entirely? It would have taken two more years to develop a PowerPC-native version of the program, says Ian LeGrow, Corel's vice president of graphics software development.

Corel's fortunes look decidedly brighter on the graphics front, anyhow. The company already offers CorelDraw and Corel Knockout 1.1 for the Mac. Last month, it bought MetaCreations' abandoned suite of graphics programs, including Painter, Bryce, Kai's Power Tools, and KPT Vector Effects.

It's been a bumpy few weeks for Corel. The company warned in an April SEC filing that it could run out of money in a few months if it didn't win approve for a merger with Inprise/Borland.

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