WinZip is one of those long time players in the software market that was on the road to complete irrelevance, as it was offering nothing that free competitors did not, and did not have an interface that was especially efficient or memorable. The people at Corel went back to the drawing board, with their thinking caps on, and changed a couple of things that will endear it to many that otherwise might not give it a second thought.
Corel-owned WinZip Computing has now rolled out a major WinZip update which debuts a new user interface, and includes a lot of added features that simplify file zipping and unzipping for quick, efficient and secure uploading and downloading, email transmission and data backup.
The biggest change you’ll see is the Office 2010-inspired ribbon interface that enables easy navigation for increased productivity, but the WinZip 14.5 update also includes the following:
- Support for Windows 7 Libraries, Jump Lists, Multi-Touch Gestures
- ‘Zip’ button on Home tab lets the user first select the files they want to zip then create a new Zip file
- ‘1-Click Unzip’ option automatically extracts the content of a Zip file to a folder it creates, then opens the folder in Windows Explorer, providing easy editing access
- ‘Auto Open’ feature automatically extracts and opens a zipped document, spreadsheet, or presentation in its associated Microsoft Office 2010 or 2007 application by simply double clicking the Zip file within Windows Explorer or Microsoft Outlook
- ‘Attach to E-mail’ button lets users email a Zip file instantly and provides advanced options like ‘best method’ compression and file encryption, as well as the ability to resize photos so they send faster and fit standard computer screens
- ‘Encrypt’ check box makes it easier than ever to secure confidential files using password-based AES encryption
- ‘Backup’ tab reveals innovative capabilities for protecting data files, including a choice of predefined backups for documents, desktop, email, etc., a wizard for creating custom backup, and a way to backup photos directly from a digital camera
"Customers tell us they rely on WinZip to save space and time and help them protect their confidential files and critical data. With WinZip 14.5, we’ve given them what they’ve asked for – features that simplify the product, making it easier to take advantage of all its power and value," said Tim Hale, Vice President of eCommerce and Marketing at WinZip. "WinZip 14.5 works the way you think," Hale continued. "Its new ribbon UI puts key features front and center and straightforward options increase user productivity."
WinZip 14.5 is now available for purchase at prices starting at $29.95 / €29.95 for a single-user WinZip Standard license and $49.95 / €49.95 for one WinZip Pro license.
Though I’m not convinced that the pricing structure will help this product much, its ribbon interface will appeal to many, and the fact that it is touch-enabled will be great for many who will not want to revert to a keyboard for one process in a long series of things that have no need for one.
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