Adobe today updated its user experience design and prototyping tool XD for the first time since a major release in October at the annual Adobe MAX creative conference. Today’s updates significantly transform how users will create and manage files.
New in XD is support for cloud documents. Unlike local files or storage synced by Creative Cloud, iCloud Drive, or Dropbox, cloud documents allow for seamless file management inside of XD. Adobe says the update will enable easier collaboration with other designers.
Starting today, cloud documents will be the default way of working in XD. Files are automatically saved and uploaded, and changes are cached locally if you go offline. The first iteration of cloud documents in XD includes a basic feature set that will expand over time. Adobe describes the following features available now:
-Auto-save – the latest version of your document will automatically be saved to the cloud, so there is no need to manually save or worry about data loss from a OS or application crash.
-Everything in one place – you’ll find your cloud documents and those shared with you right within the XD welcome screen.
-Fast and easy sharing – you can invite other designers to your document using the built-in share workflow. If you’ve already used the share for review or development workflow for prototypes and design specs, it’ll feel very similar.
-Work anywhere – your document is available wherever you choose to work, on both Mac or Windows. Just sign-in using your Creative Cloud account to see all your documents in XD on desktop and mobile.
-Linked assets – copy symbols from one document and use them in another to automatically link them. When changes are made to the original, you can choose to update linked symbols in documents that use them.
In the future, Adobe promises that features like near-instant generation of designs for review, live collaboration with other designers and file versioning will be made available. Using cloud documents and Creative Cloud libraries, users will be able to create and manage robust design systems.
Other new features added to XD today include:
-Object Flip – allows users to toggle an object’s direction with all basic design elements like gradients, text, groups, images, and vectors.
–Search in Layers Panel – lets users search by layer names or filter by text, shapes and images categories.
Adobe previously updated XD in October with support for voice prototyping and third-party plugins. For those interested in making the switch from Keynote or other prototyping tools to XD, Adobe offered some tips on getting started.
XD is available for macOS and iOS for free with a starter plan or $9.99/month for a single app plan. The tool is also part of Adobe’s $52.99/month all apps plan.