Experiences with Adobe XD

Drawing mockups is great and our clients love it. For us its one of the most important process steps and a key of getting common interests about the expected results. Mockups create a better understanding in the process of software development as well as in data science.

I experiment with various tools like BalsamiqMockingbird or InVision and each has its pros and cons. A few months ago I changed my focus to Adobe Experience Design (Adobe XD), one of the newest creations in the Adobe Creative Cloud. Adobe was able to reduce Adobe XD to its core functions without overloading it like Photoshop, Illustrator and Co. Adobe XD has two stages, Design and Prototyping. Design is used to create all the elements and in the Prototype sections the buttons and interactive elements are linked together.

Templates

Adobe XD contains a set of screen templates which can be accessed and inserted immediately without needing to search for current screen sizes on the web. A project can also contain different sets of artboards so that designs for multiple screens can be done in one file.

Furthermore Adobe XD allows to create color schemas easily to have the colors ready at one click. My favourite feature is the repeat grid. With the repeat grid you can clone elements easily in horizontal or vertical way. Adjusting one element will modify all element too. The laboriously work of making adjustments on an image gallery is gone.

Live Preview & Recording

One of the coolest features as non developer is the live preview on your phone if you design for mobile. You can simply connect your phone and start the Adobe XD App and it will render the screens live on your phone in prototype mode. You are also able to record what and where you click on the screen. This is a perfect backup if you are in an air raid bunker without WiFi connection.

Missing Icons & Design Elemente

What I missed in Adobe XD compared to Balsamiq is the search for icons and other design elements that can be added easily to the project. Adobe XD offers predefined UI kits for Apple, Google and Microsoft (File > Open UI Kit) but the visit of Flaticon.com is inevitable.

I have found another UI kit which is designed almost like Twitter Bootstrap Framework called Flat UI and perfect to quickly draw web and backend applications.

We are definitely going to continue working with Adobe XD and are curious about its further development. If you want to see what we designed so far you can check out our references in the work section.

Kevin Kuhn

Smoothie addicted digital enthusiast with a flair for Algorithms and Digital Business. Managing Partner at Jaywalker Digital