Are Flagan on Fri, 2 Aug 2002 04:42:11 +0200 (CEST)

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Reported on the same day:

Corel launches new challenges against the Microsoft monopoly based on MS's
unpopular new license agreement and Sony-backed Pressplay revises its music
download strategy with regards to file ownership and portability:

Corel Happy To Step Into Microsoft's Shoes

Pressplay Trumpets Unlimited Tunes

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August 1, 2002
Corel Happy To Step Into Microsoft's Shoes
By Jim Wagner 

When you think Corel, you think of its famous visual software -- CorelDraw,
Corel PHOTO-PAINT and Corel's HoTMetaL PRO -- but after Wednesday, the
company might just be as well-known in the office suite application arena
with the launch of a new licensing program tailored-made to strike at the
heart of Microsoft Corp. (Quote, Company Info) and its wildly-unpopular
Software Assurance program.

Wednesday is the last day for users to buy software from the Redmond, Wash.,
giant and not fall under the new licensing scheme, which charges an annual
fee for upgrades in the software application bought.

Companies around the U.S. have expressed their displeasure over the new
licensing strategy, which Microsoft executives hope will bring in consistent
revenue to the company coffers. According to an survey, 63
percent of those who responded said they were already evaluating a
non-Microsoft alternative.

Corel Corp. (Quote, Company Info) hopes businesses owners and technology
officers will look at its WordPerfect suite of applications, which provides
Microsoft Office-comparable and -compatible applications.

The new licensing agreement doesn't have volume commitments and, more
importantly, doesn't require an annual fee to upgrade. The Corel
Transactional License option starts Thursday, the same day Microsoft's
Software Assurance program launches.

The new licensing deal applies across the Corel product line, but is pitched
with an eye toward Microsoft and its customers, said Gary Klembara, Corel
executive vice president of sales.

"The purpose of this promotion is to reach out to Microsoft customers who
are dissatisfied with Microsoft's enterprise agreement and offer them an
alternative with terms we are confident they will appreciate," he said.

Like Microsoft Office, it has the business essentials: word processor,
spreadsheet program, presentation program that uses Macromedia Flash for
Web-based presentations, address book and e-mail client. Though it doesn't
sport a database program, it features a .pdf creator and opens up Microsoft

A price comparison weighs heavily in Corel's corner, too. At,
Corel WordPerfect Office 2002 Standard edition runs $280 for the full
version, a $92 difference from Microsoft's Office XP 2002 Standard edition.

The trick now for Corel executives is taking a bite out of Microsoft
Office's 90 percent marketshare. Until the past year, Microsoft was
relatively alone in the business suite application department.

Increasing displeasure over the high cost of software and the high number of
software bugs has prompted other companies to step up development of a
competitive product, companies like (a Windows-Linux hybrid) and
the free (a free derivative of Sun Microsystem's once-free

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August 1, 2002
Pressplay Trumpets Unlimited Tunes
By Ryan Naraine 
Recognizing that consumers weren't biting without value-adds for digital
music subscription services, Sony-backed Pressplay has added permanent
downloads, unlimited listening and CD-burning capabilities to the second
iteration of its offering.

Less than a year after going live in partnerships with MSN Music, Roxio Inc.
and Yahoo!, the joint venture between Sony Music Entertainment and Universal
Music Group unveiled Pressplay 2.0, a complete overhaul that basically caves
consumer demands that the service be opened up to allow portability and
ownership of paid downloads.

Pressplay 2.0 is now touting "virtually unrestricted access" to its catalog
of music. The biggest change is the decision by Pressplay to loosen its grip
on the issue of download ownership.

The new version, which went live Thursday, gives the go-ahead for CD-burning
and permanent downloads, a huge concession from the early days in the sector
when the record labels refused to allow consumers to keep listening to
downloads after subscriptions expire.

Looking to entice new customers for the much-hyped service, Pressplay has
also tweaked its pricing policy to include a free trial and three
subscription levels and a feature to let members buy as many additional
"portable download" packs as they want.

Highlights of Pressplay 2.0 include:

*    A free trial offer that allows unlimited streaming and unlimited
downloading for a three-day period.

*    A $9.95 per month unlimited option, offering unlimited streaming and
unlimited downloads.

*    A $17.95 per month Pressplay Unlimited Plus feature that promises
unlimited streaming, unlimited downloading, and 10 "portable downloads" per
month that can be burned to CDs and transferred to portable devices.

*    A discounted one-year membership priced at $179.40 that mirrors the
Unlimited Plus option but the aggregate number of 120 "portable downloads"
is immediately available on the membership start date.

Pressplay is also hawking packs of 5, 10 and 20 "portable download" tracks
for $5.95, $9.95 and $18.95, respectively to let members at any subscription
level to burn to CDs or transfer to portable devices.

The company also added a Web radio feature to Pressplay 2.0, that has been
fitted with technology to let members repeat, skip or instantly download any
song on-demand to make it part of their personal music collections.

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