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MultiMate originally appeared at the end of 1982 as WordMate, which was written for Connecticut Mutual Life Insurance to avoid the need to retrain their employees that were used to Wang word processor. WordMate renamed itself to MultiMate and began marketing its sales. Advertisements claiming that it was "modeled after the Wang word processor" and that it had the features and functions of a dedicated system sold many copies. Many purchases were made simply on the similarities with Wang. The Wang word processor keyboard was different than normal PC keyboards, so MultiMate included a plastic clip-on template to compensate. Most of MultiMate's editing operations were controlled with the function keys, with 4 functions per key. A summary page was available for each document, which made management more sophisticated than it would be with just brief file names. In 1985, MultiMate was sold to Ashton-Tate for $20 million. The later versions of MultiMate included many features written by third parties but adapted to fit MultiMate. A Windows version was never released and MultiMate was discontinued and dropped after being purchased by Borland.
PC Magazine gave an extrmemely positive review of MultiMate with claims that it's capable, it's extremely fast and easy to learn, it requires many less keystrokes per command than WordStar, and it "virtually remakes your computer into a Wang-like dedicated word processor." PC Magazine did, however, note that it's unable to use more than 128K of RAM, but did not treat it as much of an issue. BYTE, however, gave a more negative review, pointing out that while it is very safe, had good formatting features, had good customization ability, and had high-quality toll-free help lines, it was the "klunkiest package" of the five word processors that they tested; it overemphasized safety, had slow performance, an unusable spell checker, and poor built in help.