Adobe XD Discontinued: A Designer’s Mourning Guide

In September 2022, the design world watched with bated breath as Adobe announced a potential merger with Figma, the leading competitor in the UX/UI design and prototyping space.

Fast forward to June 2023, and the news wasn't what designers were hoping for. Instead of a powerful design alliance, Adobe announced the discontinuation of Adobe XD as a standalone application. This left many UX/UI designers in a state of confusion. Were we being forced to migrate to Figma, or would the two programs somehow combine?

However, December 2023 brought another twist. Adobe and Figma announced a mutual termination of their merger agreement. As a result, Adobe XD remains discontinued.

So, what does this mean for UX/UI designers? The big question is: are we being forced into Figma's arms?

Understanding Adobe XD vs Figma: A Tale of Two Titans

About Adobe XD

Launched in 2016, Adobe XD quickly became a popular choice for creating user interfaces and user experiences. It offered a user-friendly interface, robust prototyping tools, and seamless integration with other Creative Cloud applications like Photoshop and Illustrator.

For those making the switch from Adobe XD, it's important to acknowledge the strengths it offered. XD provided a familiar and streamlined workflow for designers already invested in the Adobe ecosystem, thanks to its tight integration with the Creative Cloud Suite. This seamless integration allowed for effortless transfer of assets between Adobe Creative Cloud.

Furthermore, XD boasted robust prototyping features, empowering designers to create interactive prototypes complete with transitions, animations, and user flows. These functionalities will undoubtedly be a factor to consider when choosing a new design tool.

About Figma

Launched in 2012, Figma has grown to be the industry leader in UX/UI design. Figma is a cloud-based design platform that allows for collaborative design, prototyping, and handoff.

Figma's rise to prominence can be attributed to a powerful combination of features. First and foremost, Figma's cloud-based nature allows for seamless real-time collaboration between designers and developers, making it a perfect solution for remote teams.

This collaborative aspect is further enhanced by Figma's user-friendly interface, which is clean and intuitive, making it easy for even non-designers to jump in and contribute.

Finally, the Figma team is known for its constant innovation, consistently releasing new features and updates that keep the platform at the forefront of design technology. These elements combined have solidified Figma's position as a leader in the design tool space.

Why Figma Grew in Popularity Compared to Adobe XD

While both platforms offered similar functionalities, Figma's cloud-based nature and collaborative features gave it an edge over the desktop-only XD. Additionally, Figma's free tier with basic functionalities made it accessible to individual designers and startups.

Do UX/UI Designers Have a Choice in this Matter?

Unfortunately, the choice has been made for us. Here's the stark reality:

Adobe XD is discontinued and not coming back. Adobe has already begun removing XD from the app store for new users.

Despite promises of clear communication, some users are already losing access to the app and are unable to open their XD files. This points towards a complete sunsetting of the application.

What's a Designer to Do? A Migration Plan

It's a tough pill to swallow, but for designers who rely on XD, it's time to start saving and exporting designs to Figma. Here's what you can do:

While Figma's interface shares some similarities with XD, there will be a learning curve. Be prepared to invest some time in getting familiar with Figma's functionalities.

The Future of Design Tools: A Post-XD World

With Adobe XD out of the picture, Figma reigns supreme for now. However, the design industry thrives on competition. Here are some possibilities for the future of design tools:

The Rise of New Challengers

Established players like Canva are expanding their functionalities to include wireframing and prototyping tools. Additionally, design tools like Balsamiq, may see a resurgence in popularity. Who knows, maybe a new design platform will emerge to challenge Figma's dominance.

Adobe's Next Move

While Adobe seems to be leaving the standalone web design tool market, it's unlikely they'll abandon this space altogether. Perhaps they'll integrate web design functionalities deeper into existing Creative Cloud applications like Photoshop or Illustrator.

Open-Source Alternatives

The open-source community is a hotbed for innovation. We may see the rise of open-source design tools that offer similar features to Figma at a fraction of the cost.

A Time of Change, But Still Room for Opportunity

The discontinuation of Adobe XD is a significant shift in the design landscape. While it might feel disruptive in the short term, it also presents an opportunity for designers to explore new tools and potentially discover a better workflow. It’s time to let go of our friend, Adobe XD.

Designers are adaptable and willing to learn to thrive! And it's important to remember that a strong foundation in core design principles will always be valuable, regardless of the specific platform used.

Remember, this is just a bump in the design road. There are still exciting design tools out there, and with a little effort, you can navigate this change and continue to create amazing user experiences.

At BetterWeb, we try to stay on top of trends and news. For more discussions on design tools and everything web-related, follow us on LinkedIn. We’re always happy to connect and chat!


About the Author, Erin Barr:
With a rich background in marketing spanning over a decade, Erin thrives as a web strategist and project management expert, skillfully merging digital marketing and content strategy, with a keen focus on SEO and lead nurturing. Unapologetically enthusiastic, she never shies away from liberally using exclamation points! Beyond work, she's passionate about discovering new gems in the Cleveland area, orchestrating theme parties, and cherishing moments with her family and two beloved rescue dogs.


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