CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X7 and looking ahead

With over 25 years of development, CorelDRAW Graphics Suite continues to push the boundaries of what’s possible in visual communication. Your usage of CorelDRAW and the amazing designs you produce are a key elements that drives the development of new versions of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite, and version X7 recently introduced is no exception. The vast majority of the new and enhanced features included in X7 are the direct result of your feedback in the community, surveys you’ve answered, active participation from our advisory council and beta testers as well as on-site visits by our team (plus many other sources of feedback). For example, you can now very easily create elliptic and rectangular fountain fills, we added outside and inside outlines, color styles continue to get enhancements and you can also experiment with type using the Font Playground docker.

But an even more important theme comes out clearly from the research we do: in addition to having a complete toolbox at your disposal, you also need to be very productive with CorelDRAW Graphics Suite. We know you aren’t paid by the hour for using our software. If you are a graphics professional, you’re most certainly paid by the job you produce. Being able to deliver high-quality graphics your customers expect as quickly as possible enables you to delight them and get more business over your competition. If you’re a small business owner who only uses graphics software occasionally, you need to get the job done quickly but with a high visual quality in order to go back to your business. Being able to turn around the graphics and flyers for a new promotion very quickly enables you to focus on your day job – making your customer happy.

And this is why we spent a significant effort with CorelDRAW to provide an easy way to customize the workspace you use. Starting with a new Lite workspace for those who are new to our creative suite of applications, to workflow specific ones such as page layout or illustration, we want to provide you with a way to get access to the tools you need when you need them. We also want to make sure you can quickly customize your toolbox and dockers so that you can personalize your graphics design environment to the way you work. The new clean and modernized UI was also a very important step to enable us to drive new developments going forward. Plus, making sure we are ready for the next generation of displays called “High DPI” (Apple calls this a Retina Display), e.g. a very high resolution screen is very important. The one productivity booster I use a lot is the new multi-monitor support. Here is photo of my home setting (yes, I dabble in graphics when I am not working at Corel and use CorelDRAW a lot – and no, these are not my designs):

cdgsx7_multimonitor

We’ve also worked a lot behind the scenes to provide an even better experience to those who purchase volume licenses of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite instead of a single box or download. For those who read this blog regularly, you will know that with X6 we introduced our Premium Membership which provides exclusive content, early access to new features as well as upgrades to the next major release if you have an active Premium Membership. One of the new things with X7 is that this Premium Membership is now available for those who purchase volume licenses (e.g. multiple licenses to be installed within an organization). To get these benefits, you simply get the CorelDRAW Maintenance at the same time as your purchase of the CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X7 licenses, which unlocks the Premium benefits for the employees in your company. Plus, everyone who had an active X6 maintenance has received X7 with the same benefits over the last 30 days. We’ve also rolled out volume subscriptions with X7, available through our network of channel partners. Another extra feature for those in a large organization is that IT departments can manage the installations of CorelDRAW withing the corporate network through an easy-to-use web portal. Here is a screenshot of how this would look (from our test account internally):

cdgsx7_volumelicenses

Finally, looking ahead, we are committed to listen to your needs and are accelerating our release schedule for updates. Our first update, to be released in June, is a transition into our new rapid releases cadence, with a goal to get as close as possible to quarterly updates (X6 Update 1 one was released in 5-6 months after X6, with X7.1 coming out 3 months after X7) . This new rapid releases schedule will enable us to respond a lot quicker to your requests and continue to improve the CorelDRAW Graphics Suite offering for the years to come. While we are still working on the detailed list of the improvements and enhancements that will come with X7.1 in June 2014, a few of the highlights will include the ability to change window frame colors (see below), the ability to move the status bar to the top, resolving issues saving files to Dropbox hot folders or with “&” in the title and the capability to savefountain fills back to previous versions in a more accurate way. Update 1 will not include any early access to new features for Premium Members and subscribers (we will start releasing these with Update 2 in the second half of the year). This means that anyone with a free Standard Membership will benefit from all these enhancements.

cdgsx7.1_titlecolor

And there’s one more thing coming with Update 1 for the third-party developers: We will be introducing a new set of APIs that enable to create add-on tools for CorelDRAW in Visual Basic for Applications or Visual Studio 2012/2013. These APIs allow you to create custom tools that can interact with the drawing window using the mouse, enabling you to create new interactive functionality in a way never possible before. To use an add-on tool, you will need to have signed-in with at least a Standard Membership, which is free to anyone who purchased CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X7. We will have more information about these when the Update is released, and can’t wait to see what our third-party developers will be able to provide.

Happy CorelDRAWing!

This post was originally published in Gérard’s blog on CorelDRAW.com. Find out more posts from Gérard in the CorelDRAW community.

About Gérard Métrailler

As the Sr. Director, Product Management, Graphics for Corel Corporation, I am responsible for the CorelDRAW family of products. The global responsibility of my job description means I travel regularly, and the Product Management aspect means that I spend a lot of time talking to customers, partners and press, as well as almost all the Internal teams at Corel, while keeping an eye on the technology evolution and how it can benefit our customers. Originally from Switzerland, I speak English, French and German. I am also the holder of a private pilot license and enjoy graphics design, web and software development on my free time. I am a geek at heart who looks at technology as the tool and not as the goal. All posts I do online (blogs, social networks, ...) are my own and don’t necessarily represent Corel’s positions, products, strategies or opinions.
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2 Responses to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X7 and looking ahead

  1. Jim Coyle says:

    Corel, though it is a great task to take on, I hope you will expand much more into the Mac/Apple world. It may be time to draw in many small and medium sized customers put off by Adobe’s huge cash flow model, namely Creative Cloud which they are forcing on their customer base. I, for one, am looking for suitable replacements. Thank you for considering this idea.

  2. Pingback: Corel Corporation Corel Coreldraw Graphics Suite X7

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