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Competition Brings Office Suite Bargains

Techstination feature for Tuesday, September 10, 2002

Competition for Microsoft's Office? Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Microsoft Office is by far the most dominant suite out there... when it comes to word processing suite packages... .but Corel is hoping to increase the popularity of WordPerfect. It has struck deals to be bundled with Hewlett Packard's Pavilion PC line, and some Sony and Dell computers as well. Corel's consumer package the Family Pack... sells for sixty nine dollars.....about forty dollars less than the comparable Microsoft Works. What Microsoft is pushing is the student and teacher edition of Office XP... .which sells for 150 dollars... .about a seventy percent discount. At the College Bound Network, which advises students, Gina LaGuardia says...

"It actually includes full versions of Word 2002, Outlook 2002, Excel 2002 and PowerPoint 2002. So you're getting a pretty good deal there. And you're getting all of those abilities and innovations that are in those software items and these are the same programs that their parents are using at work. So they're able to really get more involved in their students learning and that's so important."

Corel is targeting businesses too... which may be less than happy with Microsoft's revamped licensing system. It's offering businesses a one year free trial of WordPerfect. They hope many would convert. Whether Corel can make significant inroads in market share remains to be seen. Microsoft does continue to innovate with Office. In the meantime, the new competition already seems to be paying off for consumers. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.