Apple: Corel a model developer

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Corel made a strategic decision when Apple first told developers about their plans for a next generation operating system -- they would be the first company to bring all of their products to the new OS. Yesterday, Corel accomplished their goal and now have more products running on OS X than any other major developer.

"Technically OS X is a very solid platform for development with its pre-emptive multitasking and memory protection," Ian LeGrow, executive vice-president of creative products at Corel told MacCentral. "We felt that from a business standpoint, strategically, being the first company to deliver in mass numbers on a new platform would give people pause and look at Corel."

Corel and Apple worked closely together to make sure the products being released took advantage of as many of the built-in Mac OS X technologies as possible. The result is significant speed increases in some of the functions of the applications.

"In Photo-Paint, we take advantage of some of the underlying technologies," said LeGrow. "If you have a dual processor machine you will see almost double the speed for many of the effects that take advantage of the technology."

The company's move to OS X is working -- sales of Corel products have increased and LeGrow attributes that to customers showing support for a company that supports them.

Many people want to try out the Corel products before spending the money to buy them. To date Corel hasn't released a demo for its Mac OS X applications -- but that's not by choice. Unfortunately, the company Corel was working with to make the demo software folded, leaving them with nothing to release to the public. Corel is currently looking at ways to produce demos. "We're committed to getting demos out there as quickly as we can," LeGrow said.

LeGrow and the rest of the team at Corel are already looking forward. The company clearly sees Mac OS X as the future and are committed to improving their products in future versions to take advantage of the OS. If you want to work with Corel in the future, you better be on OS X.

"Our professional product line will only be OS X moving forward. By moving to OS X exclusively we'll be able to take advantage of Quartz, take more advantage of multi-tasking and Cocoa specific features as well," said LeGrow.

Apple is understandably very pleased with Corel's move to Mac OS X and its commitment to take advantage of more of the operating system's technologies in the future.

"Corel is leading the pack -- they're going to be able to take advantage of this and we want them to," Richard Kerris, Director of Developer Technologies at Apple, told MacCentral. "This is what you get for taking that jump ahead of the pack."

Realistically, no operating system can live on its own -- there are a few examples of this in recent history. Developers need to support the OS and bring products to it for customer to be able to take advantage of the technologies. Corel may have made a leap of faith by choosing to bring all of its applications to a new modern OS, but both companies think it will pay off for them.

"I think this says how committed they are as a developer -- anybody that's staying on OS 9 is in the rearview mirror at this point," said Kerris. "They really have to look at this as our future -- it's not the '80s anymore, we're going forward. I'm concerned many developers are going to have to play catch-up very aggressively."

Apple agrees that by bringing all of its products for OS X to the market first, Corel has put itself in a unique position in the graphics industry. Many organizations have moved or want to make the move to OS X, but can't because the applications they need are not available yet -- this may be a great opportunity for companies like Corel.

"Are the other applications coming? Of course they are," said Kerris. "But it's companies like Corel that take advantage of being first to platform that are going to get all those major customers looking at them for the first time -- production can't wait."

"Corel is a model developer for us. They are someone we hold up and say look at how well they are doing, look at the suite of products. We're really pleased," said Kerris.

This story, "Apple: Corel a model developer" was originally published by PCWorld.

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