Remember WinZip? It was a relatively popular tool for compressing and extracting compressed files in a variety of formats back in the day. As it turns out, it still exists, and Corel – the company that owns the software – recently announced the launch of WinZip 26 for Windows. Now, in addition to the known file compression tools, WinZip includes a suite of productivity-focused apps.
The main WinZip app does have some improvements, though. You can connect the app to your cloud services like Google Drive and OneDrive, and with this version, it supports shared files. That means you can access files shared with you on these platforms through WinZip, not just files saved on your own account. Plus, you can also access your cloud NAS storage thanks to integration with Western Digital’s My Cloud service.
There are also other new and improved features in WinZip 26, like a new ribbon design for the interface, automated cleaning for your computer, the ability to quickly switch from Windows Explorer to WinZip for managing files, and more. Compression has also been improved for Zipx files, with a new ZSTD method for making files smaller, as well as duplicate detection to avoid adding unnecessary files to a compressed folder. Instead, duplicate files are stored as links to save space.
Aside from the zipping-related tools, WinZip 26 also includes other productivity apps for the first time. There’s a new WinZip PDF Express app that lets users convert or merge different kinds of files into a single PDF, or export a PDF file into a Word document or image. A new WinZip Image Manager app so users can convert, resize or crop images, as well as remove EXIF data, geotagging, and other sensitive information from images. WinZip Secure Backup does pretty much what the name suggests, backing up your data locally or in the cloud. Finally, WinZip Share Express is a tool for sharing files to different places with features like self-destructing files and encryption.
All those new productivity apps require a Pro or Enterprise license of WinZip 26, which costs $49.95. Many of us would probably consider freeware zipping tools to do the job just fine, but if you find the new features compelling, you can buy WinZip 26.