Tomorrow morning, Corel will officially introduce a new set of choices available to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite customers: CorelDRAW Memberships. These options will be included in the first update, also known as X6.1, that will officially be released tomorrow morning as well (you will be able to check for the update from within the product's help menu as of tomorrow afternoon Eastern time / tomorrow evening UTC).

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As mentioned in my previous post, we want to provide CorelDRAW Graphics Suite customers with more choices in order to enhance their product experience, to enable you to go beyond the desktop software that is included in the box and remained fairly static over time. While we’ve traditionally released new versions of CorelDRAW every 24 months in recent years, we also understand that this can be a long period to wait in order to benefit from new features and enhancements we develop internally. We’ve also heard from many of you that keeping the content on the DVD only (or copying the 4 Gb on your hard drive) isn’t your preferred option.

We call these options “CorelDRAW Memberships” and will be enabling you to choose between two levels going forward: the Standard and the Premium Membership.

standard

The CorelDRAW Standard Membership, which is free for everyone who purchases CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6 Full or Upgrade versions as a Box or a Download, will give you access to all of the content (clip-art, fonts, stock photos, templates, …) that is currently stored on the DVD through an online service integrated in Corel CONNECT. Not only that, but we are adding 1000 high-resolution stock photos and 250 clipart to the online content in addition to what’s already on the disc.

Corel Website Creator X6 is now available to download from within your Corel.com account when you sign-up for a Standard Membership. Simply select Account Settings from the Help menu and click on "Downloads for Members and Subscribers".

The Standard Membership will also give you access to the latest performance and stability improvements going forward (what we previously called “Service Packs”). All that is required in order to benefit from the CorelDRAW Standard Membership is to sign-in with your Corel.com account within CorelDRAW, Corel PHOTO-PAINT or Corel CONNECT (you can create one within the applications if you don’t have one already). 

premium

The CorelDRAW Premium Membership, which has a yearly cost of about half the price of an upgrade, will include everything from the Standard Membership plus a lot more. As of tomorrow, we will for example include a lot more premium content such as an extra 1000 high-resolution stock photos, 40 new premium fonts, as well as more pieces of clipart, patterns, text frames and PowerClip frames. We plan to add even more content in the future for premium members.

In addition to exclusive content, CorelDRAW users with an active Premium membership will also be entitled to gain early access to new features that will be made available more generally with the next major release. Note that there is one exception with X6.1 compared to future updates: we have decided to provide the early access to new features included with X6.1 to everyone on X6 so that you get a feel of what will be included in that Premium offering. X6.2, currently expected to be available before the end of 2012, is already well under development and the early access to new features in Update 2 will be exclusively available to Premium Members.

CorelDRAW customers who sign-up for the Premium Membership will also entitle you to get access to the next major releases when we launch it. In other words, anyone who is on an active Premium Membership will get X7 when released, making sure that you are always up-to-date going forward.

Beyond this, we are also hard at work to provide additional services (from Corel and third parties), special offers and benefits to those who sign-up for a Premium Membership going forward. Available to everyone who purchased CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6 (full or upgrade box / download) and has installed the X6.1 or later update, you will be able to sign-up for a 365-days CorelDRAW Premium Membership directly from within your product, with the option to configure auto-renewal so that you never lose the benefits of the Premium Membership.

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CorelDRAW X6.1 with the new “Align and Distribute” docker.

There is one more thing I wanted to cover today: We will be progressively rolling out an option for a CorelDRAW Subscription around the world in the next few months. We will be offering both a month-to-month and an annual option, and the CorelDRAW Subscription will provide you with the full access to the CorelDRAW Graphics Suite desktop application as well as all the benefits of the Premium Membership for as long as you remain on an active subscription.

We know that “renting” software is not for everyone, and we want to offer you different options so that you can choose how to best experience and use CorelDRAW Graphics Suite. In summary, you can:

  • Buy and own a perpetual version (Box or download) of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6 as you’ve done in the past with desktop software. From there you can sign up for a Standard Membership for free of go with the annual Premium Membership option that includes so much more.
  • Subscribe to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite, which includes the latest version of the software as well as the Premium Membership, on a month-to-month or annual basis.

We also understand that you might not have a permanent Internet connection and have designed the access to the CorelDRAW Memberships to work great in your environment. We’ve added a little status icon in the lower right corner of the CorelDRAW and Corel PHOTO-PAINT applications / upper right corner of Corel CONNECT and as long as this icon is green, you’re good to go. There is no need to sign-out before closing the application as CorelDRAW / Corel PHOTO-PAINT / Corel CONNECT will manage all this for you automatically.

A final comment for those who purchase multi-seat licenses. While we currently do not offer Memberships for those of you in network deployed environment, it is something that we plan to offer in the future.

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