Press Release

Monday, February 3, 1997 < Prev Next >

Visio Ships Visio Technical 4.5

New Version to Extend Visio Technical's Market Dominance to Facilities Management, HVAC, Electrical Engineering and Custom Solution Development

SEATTLE, Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ — Visio Corp. (Nasdaq: VSIO) today announced the shipment of Visio® Technical 4.5 to fulfill demand as a core productivity application and solutions platform in markets such as facilities management, electrical and electronic engineering, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), mechanical engineering, and process plant design. In less than two years on the market, Visio Technical has been purchased by more than 100,000 technical users and become the industry's best-selling 2-D technical drawing application. Market demand for Visio Technical reflects Visio's commitment to providing users an efficient way to create and share professional-quality drawings — without the limitations associated with many CAD programs — and Visio Technical's ability to meet a wide variety of drawing needs through unique SmartShapes® technology.

Visio Technical spans a range of usage and already has made significant inroads into markets such as architecture, engineering, construction (A/E/C). A study of Visio Technical's installed base showed that the number of users using Visio Technical for space planning has grown to 58 percent and that electrical and electronic schematics are being created by 34 percent and 27 percent of users, respectively. In addition, the study proved that Visio Technical is the most essential software on its users' desktops, more essential than Microsoft® Word or Microsoft Excel.

"We are heavily invested in furthering the functionality and ease of use of Visio Technical to ensure that its capabilities suit our users' needs without the cost limitations associated with traditional CAD software," said Mark Sherman, Visio Technical product manager. "Enhancements in version 4.5 will make the product more beneficial to both our current users and new customers who are looking for a technical drawing solution to address particular needs or as a platform for custom development efforts."

New Version Enhances Breadth and Depth of Technical Drawing Applications

To meet the needs of users such as architects and facilities and property managers, Visio Technical 4.5 provides a new Wall Layout stencil and utility to join, move, and align walls and related shapes. Among Visio Technical 4.5's other new features are two stencils of new SmartShapes symbols for HVAC design. Developed by Honeywell Inc. to conform to a proposed American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers Inc. (ASHRAE) standard, the new shapes for duct work, sensors and equipment provide users with the most common shapes for HVAC industrial controls.

Visio has added a new dimension to Visio Technical's programmability in version 4.5 by including a fully licensed implementation of Microsoft's Visual Basic®, Applications Edition (VBA). By supporting VBA and exposing Visio Technical's object model for custom solution development, programmer productivity is increased and the use and distribution of Visio Technical-based custom applications is streamlined.

Enhanced Internet functionality such as the Save As HTML export filter enables users to publish their drawings on the Internet or a corporate intranet in HTML format. The product's support of Microsoft ActiveX™ technologies allows any Visio Technical user viewing the file on the Internet or an intranet using Microsoft Internet Explorer to edit the drawing in place, or to use tools such as zoom and pan to better view the drawing. In addition, the new Hyperlinking Wizard automatically creates links from a Visio Technical drawing to a URL or to another page or document.

Visio Technical 4.5 supports automatic layout and intelligent line routing for diagrams such as process flow. The product also includes an R13 import filter that allows Autodesk AutoCAD R13 drawings to be imported as displayable metafiles, giving users the ability to view even their most recent AutoCAD drawings in Visio Technical.

Market Acceptance of Visio Technical

Since its delivery to the market in 1995, corporate customers, solution providers and ISVs have selected Visio Technical as a new approach for creating 2-D technical drawings and as a graphical platform for solution development. Independent market data from PC Data confirms the industry's increasing preference for Visio Technical. Visio Technical has achieved over 50 percent unit market share in U.S. distribution in the 2-D technical drawing arena, which includes all technical drawing products priced between $200 and $500.

Wayne Bandy, a process plant design consultant who worked for more than 15 years at Exxon Corp., said he finds the use of Visio Technical revolutionary in the creation and modification of electrical and instrumentation designs. "Visio Technical is so user-friendly, and it greatly benefits the exchange of designs between field staff and the engineering department in the quality review process. The product's support of electrical and instrumentation SmartShapes symbols makes the creation of designs notably faster than manual drafting."

Visio Technical also has recently been implemented as the "drag-and-drop" graphical editor within an engineering solution at Rockwell Automation Drive Systems, and as the graphical front end for a system to supervise and manage power distributed to about 240,000 customers in the city of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. In the facilities management arena, the Los Angeles Fire Department has chosen Visio Technical to prepare 115 floor plans of the area's fire department facilities. And the U.S. Department of Transportation has adopted Pipeline Engineer's Toolbox, developed by Technical Toolboxes, which combines Visio Technical's powerful graphics engine with more than 150 standard petroleum engineering shapes for state and federal inspection of oil, gas and water pipelines in the United States.

Pricing and Availability

Visio Technical 4.5 has a U.S. estimated street price of $299. Upgrade pricing is also available. Visio Technical 4.5 supports the Microsoft Windows® 95 and Windows NT® 3.51 and 4.0 operating systems as well as Office 97. Visio Technical 4.1 will be offered in the same box for users of Windows 3.1.

Visio Technical 4.5 is currently available directly from Visio and will be available from leading national distributors, corporate resellers, retail channels and direct marketers in early February. To place an order or to obtain more information on any Visio product, customers can contact Visio at 800-24-VISIO [248-4746], ext. 93W. Additional details about Visio can also be obtained on CompuServe or Visio's Web page at

About Visio Corp.

Visio Corp., a leading supplier of enterprise-wide business diagramming and technical drawing software, was founded in September 1990. The Seattle- based company pioneered the drawing and diagramming market with the release of Visio 1.0 in November 1992 and has since released additional Windows-based products for the creation and exchange of drawings and diagrams in business. Visio's powerful product architecture, combined with partner programs and third-party relationships in key market segments, is establishing Visio as a desktop platform standard for the creation of graphical solutions. The company markets the Visio product line in nine languages and in more than 35 countries throughout the world.

NOTE: Visio and SmartShapes are registered trademarks of Visio Corp. Microsoft, Visual Basic, ActiveX, Windows and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks, tradenames or company names referenced herein are used for their identification only and are the property of their respective companies.

SOURCE Visio Corp.

/CONTACT: Johanna Range, 206-637-9097, or, or Melissa Covelli, 206-637-9097, or, both of Waggener Edstrom for Visio Corp./


CO: Visio Corp. ST: California IN: CPR SU: PDT

RN-KW — SFM037 — 0969 02/03/97 12:01 EST