Adobe XD Reviews& Product Details
What is Adobe XD?
Adobe Experience Design (Adobe XD) is the latest software by Adobe. It is primarily aimed at prototypers, designers, and game developers so that they can create designs or prototypes fast while communicating effectively. Technically, it is a vector-based design platform that is powerful and easy to use. Adobe XD was made into the market in 2015 but has grown tremendously in users and features. Also, Adobe is pushing Adobe XD to match the market expectations and quickly establish its position as a strong player for UI/UX and prototype designer solutions.
The first thing you will notice about this tool is how fast it is! You can quickly zoom in and zoom out and play with hundreds of design elements without worrying about it being slowed down. Adobe XD is currently available as an app and can be downloaded for Windows and Mac systems with cross-platform compatibility so that teams can work without compromise.
- Small Business
- Medium Business
- Large Enterprise
- Non-profit Organization
- Cloud, SaaS, Web-Based
- Mobile - Android
- Mobile - iPhone
- Mobile - iPad
- Desktop - Mac
- Desktop - Windows
- Desktop - Linux
- Desktop - Chromebook
- On-Premise - Windows
- On-Premise - Linux
Adobe XD Pricing
Adobe XD Features
- Wireframe Creation
- Visual Modeling
- UX Prototyping
- Usability Testing
- UI Prototyping
- Software Prototyping
- Production-Ready Code
- Preview Functionality
- Mockup Creation
- Mobile Interface
- Media Import
- Image-Based Prototyping
- Drag & Drop
- Desktop Interface
- Auto Update
- Design Templates
- Design System Creation
- Design Management
- CTA Design
- Code-Based Prototyping
- Collaboration Tools
- Content Publishing Options
- Data Import/Export
Adobe XD vs. Similar Products
Adobe XD Integrations
Adobe XD Alternatives
Adobe XD falls under the UI/UX solution, but it is not mature enough to replace other existing products in the niche, including Figma and Sketch. However, the product works well-being part of the Adobe ecosystem. As a designer, you can use other Adobe software and create a workflow that works well with your requirements. For example, you can use Illustrator and Photoshop to refine your design solutions further.
With Adobe XD, you can primarily work on the following:
- Create wireframes
- Create interactive prototypes
- Build a design system
- Do web design
- UI or visual design
- Mobile apps design
- Game design
Adobe XD is Adobe’s latest software offering. It has become the latest member of Adobe Creative Cloud. It is a UI/UX design desktop-based tool that lets you create wireframes, prototypes, or any form of visual design. The collaborative features are also well-done, where you can easily share your work with auto-generated specifications. Adobe constantly adds new features to improve its tool. You can try out Adobe XD through their free Starter plan, with paid plans starting at $9.99 per user per month.
What is Adobe XD used for?
Adobe XD is a UI/UX software. So, if you want to create a prototype for your next app or website, Adobe XD is for you. It lets you design a modern, flexible, animated prototype that can be shared and communicated with the clients/engineers, or managers before being finalized. Furthermore, as it is a vector-based design platform, you should be able to use it for all of your work.
Adobe XD takes over the overall Prototype and design creation process, which you can use from ideation to asset delivery. The tool also offers workflow and time-saving features that enable teams to collaborate more easily. This means that team members can easily leave feedback via comments.
Some of the key features that make working efficiently with Adobe XD include:
- Responsive Resize – Easily create a new size by dragging
- Components and states – Adobe XD offers reusable elements that can be used later, streamlining the process. In addition, it lets you sync different elements in the design and make changes throughout the elements without going through them.
- Stacks and Padding let you save time by easily adding space between an element and the other boundary within your design.
- Repeat Grid – Easily copy elements and create multiple elements of the same by dragging the element. This keeps the elements/copies in sync, improving consistency and saving time.
- 3D transformation – Add 3D transformation to improve your design and add perspective for a more intuitive understanding and control.
- Sharable libraries – Easily share assets across teams for better collaboration.
You also get plugins and interactive features such as auto-animate, scroll groups, triggers, anchor links, etc.! With Adobe XD, you can create a website design, app design, marketing campaigns, voice assistant design, and game design.
Getting started with Adobe XD
Adobe XD is feature-rich UX design software. However, to get started, you need a strong foundation in user experience, design, and prototyping. To simplify how to get started, let’s cover it by answering the following questions.
Who can use it?
Adobe XD primarily aims at designers who want the best tool to create wireframes, prototypes, and designs for Web, apps, games, and other web experiences with visuals. However, you can also try Adobe XD if you already use UI/UX tools such as Sketch or Figma. Adobe XD can open and work with popular UI/UX tools files, including Sketch. Recently Adobe XD also added a voice prototyping feature, making it great software for those who want to do voice prototyping.
In short, a designer should find himself at home with Adobe XD, but if you are a developer, you can also use XD effectively to create wireframes and prototypes for your apps and games. If you go by the questions asked during installations, the following people can use the Adobe XD software:
- Marketing Professional
- Teachers, staff, or faculty
- Professional photographer
- Video professional
- Visual or graphical designer
- UX designer, mobile or Web
- IT professional
- Product Manager
- 3D artist
- Mobile, Web, or UX designer
How to download Adobe XD?
Before you start downloading Adobe XD, you need to make sure that you meet the minimum requirement. Currently, Adobe XD is available for macOS and Windows.For macOS, you need to meet the following requirement:
- macOS v10.15 or later.
- 4 GB RAM
- 13-inch or larger display sporting 1400 x 900
- Internet connection
- Windows 10 1909 64-bit or later
- 13-inch or larger display sporting 1280 x 800
- 4 GB RAM
- Pen and touch input support
- Graphics card support 3D DDI feature set
You can also use the tool on mobile devices, including iOS and Android. If you meet the download requirement, you need to go to the official webpage or their Adobe XD downloads webpage, where you can start downloading it. You can also install it on multiple computers but only use it on one computer at a time.
Once downloaded, you will be prompted to install it. The installation will redirect you to the login page to log in to your Adobe account. If you can redirect successfully, it will continue the installation process and ask for some permissions, as shown below.
Next, it will ask you some questions that you can skip. However, you may also want to answer those as it will help you set up the application accordingly.
Start working with Adobe XD
Once the installation is complete, Adobe XD will open. The initial dashboard looks like the one below.
The free version of Adobe XD is the Adobe XD free Starter plan. The limitation includes one active shared link, one active shared document, and two editors. You can also check out Adobe XD templates and UI kits that lets you jumpstart your project.
On the left navigational menu, you get your options related to Home, Learn, and other file options. For example, if you are new to AdobeXD or UI/UX design, you can go to Learn. It will redirect you to a webpage where you can learn about Design, Prototypes, Components, and Collaboration.
You can create a New File from the top left. Moreover, you can also use templates to create Web, Instagram Stories, iPhone, and so on. You can also create a custom size for your requirement. Once you select the template, it will open up a new video, allowing you access to many features!
On the top, you can see Design and Prototype. So, you can create your design first and then move to the Prototype once finished. The Share option is also easily accessible, making it easy to share your design with managers, clients, and other team members. Next, you get a clean canvas to start your project! If you get stuck, you can always check Adobe XD documentation.
Details of Adobe XD Features
This section will take a closer look at Adobe XD features. All these features are glued together to provide a seamless design experience, and you are bound to see improved workflow with collaborators and team members. So, let’s explore the Adobe XD features below.
Layout and Design
The layout and design features let you quickly get started with our work. You can pick up styles and colors for your layouts with these features. The key layouts and design features include the following:
3D Transforms: 3D Transforms let you create real-life 3D designs. With it, you can rotate cross planes and put layers in depth. The 3D gives your design life as you can easily rotate or move objects in a 3D space. To make 3D transforms work, you need to do the following:
- Select a component
- Enable 3D transformations
- Rotate and move across the axis
Components and States: Components and States let you design once and reuse them everywhere. You can easily change your documents and designs simultaneously with components. This saves you time as you do not have to duplicate them. To use them, you need to:
- Design a UI element using text, drawing, and text
- Make a component by selecting layer and right-clicking to select Component
- Add States by clicking + and add interactions
Repeat Grid: With Repeat Grid, you can simplify copying elements within your design. This way, you do not have to copy elements and paste them. Instead, you need to click and drag the element creating repeating grids. The feature is very helpful for replicating elements, and you can easily add more menus, product listings, photo galleries, etc. To use it, you need to do the following:
- Design the element
- Drag it to create the repeat grid
- Now populate it with real content
- Easy Import: Adobe XD works great with Adobe Creative Cloud Integrations. This means you can easily work with other software and import the design to Adobe XD or vice-versa.
- Content-Aware Layout: Adobe XD is smart enough to arrange your design components as you work. With Content-Aware Layout, you do not have to worry about minor adjustments across your design.
- Adobe Fonts: Utilize Adobe Fonts that work great with your design and across the Creative Cloud account.
- Responsive Resize: Adobe XD lets you create a responsive design for your screen sizes.
- Blend modes: Use blend modes to create stylistic effects using images and layers.
- Edit in Photoshop: Use PhotoShop to your advantage by editing some aspects of your design and easily importing it into Adobe XD.
- Background and Object Blur: Use a focused effect to amplify your design.
- Vector drawing tools: Use Vector to your advantage by drawing lines, shapes, and paths to create exciting layouts and elements.
Prototyping and Animation
Adobe XD is also excellent when it comes to prototyping and animation. It allows to easily add interactions, motion, and user flows without writing a single line of code. The key Prototyping and Animation features include:
With Adobe XD, you can easily add animation to your elements using Auto-animate. For example, you can easily add smooth transitions, visual feedback, and playful interactions. Moreover, you can also add motion effects. All these can be done without writing a single line of code by just learning how to use the tool. For example, users can do it in the following way.
- Connect two artboards by dragging a wire.
- Now add action and select “auto-animate.”
- Select the Trigger, such as time, drag, or tap.
- Next, preview your Prototype and see your animation in action.
- Video and Lottie Playback: You can easily add playable videos and render animation with this feature.
- Scroll Groups: Using this feature, you can easily create interactive carousels such as menu loops or lists. In the end, you get a professional-looking design that you can scroll.
- Voice Prototyping: Adobe XD also includes voice prototyping that lets you use the internal speech playback to create voice commands and embed voice-enabled features.
- Anchor Links: Easily anchor links and create connected layouts and clickable links such as navigation menus and scroll-to-top interactions.
- Audio Playback: Add sound and playback to your design for improved personality and usability.
- Gamepad and Keyboard Support: You can easily add interactions to your design with keyboard and gamepad support.
- Device Preview: You can easily do previews on mobile, including iOS and Android, using Adobe XD apps.
- Overlays: Create complex designs and prototypes using overlays that let you create dialogue boxes, slide-out menus, or on-screen keyboards.
- Triggers and Wires: Add or improve user interactions by dragging wires and connecting artboards.
- Export to After Effects: Easily export the Adobe XD designs and prototypes to After Effects to add deeper animations.
Collaboration and Handoff
Adobe XD is the strongest suite in its collaboration and handoff features. With this, you can easily share your work and get feedback. The key Collaboration and Handoff Adobe XD features include:
Design Specs enable designers to easily streamline the handoff process to developers with as much context as possible. With it, you can share interactive prototypes, CSS code snippets, customized variable names, and downloadable assets. Furthermore, all of these can be shared using one link enabling everyone to be on the same page.
Love working with your colleagues? Well, with Adobe XD, you can do so using Coediting feature. It lets you work on the same design together and share real-time feedback. Design can be a collaborative process, and Coediting enables you to work seamlessly with anyone you want without worrying about location or time zone. This also improves efficiency as everyone involved in the project is synchronized. Of course, you need to create a cloud document and invite others using their email to get started.
- Cloud Documents: Save your work and assets in the cloud for easy accessibility and collaboration.
- Share link: Create one shareable link and get feedback from collaborators.
- Document history: Adobe XD stores previous work into versions so users can access it easily.
- Design tokens: Create design tokens – a customizable name for characters and colors for guiding developers.
- Mentions and Comments: Easily collaborate with others using mentions and comments.
- Private Invites: Only share with people you want with private invites.
- Record Videos: Want to share a video? Then, you can easily record videos and showcase the prototype demo with interactions with stakeholders. Unfortunately, this feature is only available on macOS.
- Password Protection: Password protects your design for improved security.
- Share to Behance: Want to share your work on Behance? You can easily share your work directly with Behance from Adobe XD.
Design Systems lets you easily scale your solutions with Adobe Cloud Solutions. Here, you get access to Creative Cloud Libraries, a big library of logos, graphics, colors, and assets across different Adobe software, including Illustrator, Photoshop, and more!
Adobe XD also supports external tools and apps that improve your work with XD. With it, you get the following:
XD Plugins and App integrations: Adobe XD also supports plugins that let you add more automation and features. So, if you add third-party functionality, you can choose from 250+ plugins that enable you to improve your workflow and do better iterations. For example, you can import services/apps to convert designs to code, add color-blindness support, etc.
To add XD, click the plugin icon and open the plugins panel. You can launch the Plugins marketplace and search for the plugins you want to add. Some of the notable XD plugins include:
- Chart for XD
- Web Export
Plugins APIs: If you are an advanced user, you can also take advantage of the Plugins APIs offered by Adobe XD. The API lets you create XD plugins or add connectivity to Adobe XD and your custom solution.
Adobe XD Review Conclusions
Adobe XD is undoubtedly an excellent UI/UX prototyping software that lets you do many things, including creating wireframes, visual design, website design, design systems, and so on! In addition, it offers excellent collaborative features. The tool selection is great, with access to components and advanced features such as Repeat Grid, 3D Transforms, Auto-Animate, Voice Prototyping, etc.!
The software also offers excellent import and export functionality where you can take advantage of the Creative Cloud ecosystem. This means seamless integration within the Creative Cloud software, including After Effects, Illustrator, and Photoshop. The pricing is also well-done, starting from $9.99 per user.
In conclusion, Adobe XD is a great UI/UX design/prototype software and works great for team needs. However, if you are looking for more mature software, you can look at its alternative, including Figma, Sketch, and inVision.