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Adobe XD is Now Free – Should You Switch?

Adobe XD is now a free software and available to be downloaded as a Free Starter Plan for designing user interfaces for desktop and mobile devices. Those familiar with Sketch will find the software very similar and will get accustom to it quickly. If you need some tutorials, here you can find some resources by Adobe.

What are the features and should you switch? Let’s take a deep dive into the main points:

Limited & Unlimited Features in Adobe XD

Overall, you are able to use Adobe XD with a limitation to these features:

  1. 1 active shared prototype
  2. 1 active shared design spec
  3. 2GB cloud storage
  4. Typekit Free (limited set of fonts)

So, if you are a light weight user and are using it with a small team within a company, this should be alright. However, for designers working in an agency or running a design business, this can be a limitation in the future. But with only $9.99/month, you can subscribe to the single app plan and unlock unlimited features for the above and with 100GB cloud storage.

Speed & Familiarity with the UI

When using Adobe XD, it feels as though you are walking on clouds. The UI is intuitive and you have a clean layout to start designing. Elements such as text inputs, cards and image placeholders can be duplicated quickly with Repeat Grid. To Prototype, you have a tab right on the top to switch – and it’s easier done compared to Sketch.

The only thing I find missing is the capability to export multiple assets in different sizes at the same time. For example taking an image and exporting it at @1x, @2x and @3x.

This leads to the next question…

Sharing Design Assets

We can share design assets via uploading it to the cloud and sharing design specs or prototype through a public link. This is similar to how Sketch and InVision works. XD has an edge in a way that it manages UI design, prototype and design systems in a coherent system.

Will there be Adobe XD Plugins?

For the Sketch user, plugins are the main reason they stay. In our previous post, we have discussed about time-saving plugins, and what we have heard is Adobe XD will be enabling plugin integration in time to come. Hopefully this will be lead to a better future for XD users and enhancements to the software.

Conclusion

Adobe XD is a great tool to use right now if you are starting out in exploring UX/UI design. There is no better time than to download and get started now. If you are an existing Sketch user, perhaps you will realise that someday you might prefer the features and speed that XD will offer in your growing business.

Give it a try! And let us know in the comments if you have anything to add.

Resources for Adobe XD UI Kits and Tutorials

  1. XDGuru
  2. XDResources
  3. Dansky’s Adobe XD Tutorials

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