Adobe Photoshop has been the industry standard for image editing and creativity for many many years, but Adobe has bold new plan to make Adobe XD the halo product. While Photoshop does a great job at enabling creatives to create still graphics, the world is moving beyond the static, instead being replaced by the interactive. As more and more content exported from Photoshop lives on as digital assets in websites and mobile apps, designers need a product that respects the new, modern world and Adobe XD is that product.
“We believe Adobe XD will be as big or bigger than Photoshop.”
As a long time Photoshop user I thought that claim was simply marketing hype until I seen demos for the upcoming XD May release. Photoshop is often used for UI design, but the UX requires another tool, Adobe XD can do both. Designers can build navigation hierarchies between screens in an app, or interactive elements on a webpage. The exciting part is the simplicity and rapidness in which you can create and modify these designs, then review live, in real time (inside the same application) how that interaction between screens works.
New in Adobe XD this month is improved interactions between Photoshop CC and Sketch, Password protected Design specs (beta), Simple drag and drop options to swap symbols, Paste to multiple artboards and File auto-recovery.
The responsive nature of modern design means we need to see how our designs respond when screen sizes or orientations change and Adobe XD lets you easily see that and most important, provides easy methods to change things. This really is a modern design application to support modern work. UI Kits provide the common elements needed in design for the different platforms, further speeding up your development. Things like scrolling areas, actually scroll and aren’t just placeholders like they are in Photoshop.
Adobe also announced the Adobe Fund for Design, a $10 Million investment fund to encourage innovation in design. They also announced a new Adobe XD Starter Plan which is free, providing everyone with the tools to get started designing, prototyping and sharing features for the desktop, mobile and web. The Starter plan includes 2GB of cloud storage, compared to the 100GB of the paid product and also attracts a limitation of only permitting 1 shared prototype at a time, while the full product is unlimited.