Will Adobe XD kill Sketch and InVision?
Adobe’s answer to Sketch and InVision is Adobe XD. Sketch has been the leading tool for UX/UI designers for some years now, enhanced further by its community, plugins and integration with InVision.
If you couldn’t care less for Adobe XD, or don’t want to know what XD has to offer, do yourself a favour and scroll down and read the section “Why Adobe XD will dominate, regardless of features” before crossing XD off your list.
There are many other UX/UI design tools outside of Sketch and InVision. Figma, Framer and Protopie to name a few, but Sketch and InVision seem to be dominating the field. The question we need to ask is, is their reign about to come to an end?
I am in no way affiliated with Adobe and the opinions expressed in this article are my own.
A brief history to date
Traditionally, designers used Photoshop to mockup apps and websites, but Photoshop as a tool, was never created for the purpose of designing websites and apps. Photoshop, being a very heavy pro tool, began its days with a focus on photography, and was later picked up by graphic designers enabling them to bring their creations to the next level.
The big problem with Photoshop is that the tool is clunky, its native PSD format left designers managing large files and the majority of tools within the software are useless to most digital designers.
Sketch came to the rescue and addressed these issues and has now evolved into the market leader. Sketch allowed for reusable symbols and much faster workflows, enabling designers to work smarter and more efficiently. Sketch’s real power comes to light with the addition of plugins, allowing very specific, custom functionality to be added to the software, not available through the native application.
Sketch — https://www.sketchapp.com
The ability to create prototypes was first enabled via InVision’s integration. InVision allowed you to upload native PSD and Sketch files to their platform and turn designs into workable prototypes. Recently Sketch enabled prototyping via its cloud service, but this is still very basic and limited.
“If an image is worth a thousand words, a prototype will leave you speechless.” — Shane Williams
Enter InVision Studio
When it came to complex animations, designers often still relied on building mockups in software like Adobe’s After Effects. This workflow was challenged when InVision announced Studio, a new piece of software that allowed designers to build more advanced animation and micro-interactions. Studio also integrated with InVision’s link to Sketch via its Craft plugin. Like Photoshop, After Effects is too heavy an application for UI animation work.