Competitor Analysis: Design Tools

Summary

Technology has developed rapidly over the past decade. The average user is tech savvy with high expectations for interface usability. Products must be useful and easy to use for users with a wide range of backgrounds, experiences, and expectations.

As a result, enterprise-level companies have invested in building in-house user experience teams to tackle design. This trend has created the need for design tools that can accomplish the following:

Design tools

Enterprise designers work on a variety of platforms. The market has exploded over the past decade, with a majority of designers moving from using desktop software to cloud-based platforms. This move is largely based around the need for collaboration between designers and other departments.

Figure 1, Enterprise UX Industry Report 2017-2018

This trend presents a unique opportunity for GitLab. GitLab is the first single application built from the ground up for all stages of the DevOps lifecycle for Product, Development, QA, Security, and Operations teams to work concurrently on the same project. A significant missing piece of this lifecycle is UX Design.

Areas of opportunity for GitLab:

The total market potential is over US$ 4 billion and growing. With no clear winners in the design tool space, there is a significant opportunity for an application that can successfully engage developers and design teams in the DevOps lifecycle.

Competitor Feature Comparison

Screen Design

Interaction Design

Review & Collaborate

Developer Handoff

Version Control

Design System Manager

UX Research

Fully-featured

Invision Studio

Linear

Figma

Linear

UX Pin

Linear

Design and Prototype

Sketch 

Adobe XD

Balsamiq

Framer

Axure RP

Version Control

Abstract

Branch and Merge

Plant

Linear

Team Collaboration and Communication

Invision Web

Marvel

UX Research and UI Testing

Usability Hub

Lookback

Full Story

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InVision

Company: InVisionApp Inc.

Location: New York Area and Remote

Size: 905

Website: https://www.invisionapp.com/

InVisionApp Inc. provides a design collaboration platform for startups, corporations, and design agencies. It allows users to research, design, review, and test products; offers tools for prototyping, task management, and version control; enables users to create and craft things for Web and mobile platforms; and allows users to design prototyping, sharing and presentation, feedback and commenting, meetings and whiteboarding, and organization and collaboration. It also offers Studio, a screen design platform tool that allows users to extend the product experience; and real-time insights, team activity, project management, team management, workflow integration, enterprise grade security, single-sign-on integration, custom branding, and asset storage and sharing solutions for enterprises.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/invisionapp/

Total funding: $235.2M

Last funding: $100M (Series E, November 2017)

Last valuation: $900M (November 2017)

Core Products: 

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Abstract

Company: Elastic Projects Inc.

Location: San Francisco, CA

Size: 105

Website: https://www.goabstract.com/

Abstract is a design and workflow platform that helps designers work together. Abstract builds upon and extends the stable technology of Git to host and manage your work.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/abstract

Total funding: $24.2M

Last funding: $16M (Series B, May 2018)

Last valuation: xx

Core Product:

Strengths

Weakness

Notes

Marquee Customers

Figma

Company: Figma

Location: San Francisco, CA

Size: 84

Website: https://www.figma.com/

Figma is a free, online UI tool where you can create, collaborate, prototype and handoff all in the same place. Built entirely in the browser, Figma enables the entire team’s design process to happen in one online tool.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/figma

Total funding: $42.9M

Last funding: $25M (Series B, February 2018)

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

UX Pin

Company: UXPin Inc.

Location: Palo Alto, CA, United States

Size: 60

Website: https://www.uxpin.com

The only end-to-end platform. Design systems, prototyping, and developer documentation tools. Fully collaborative.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/uxpin

Total funding: $7.3M

Last funding: $5M (Series A, July 2015)

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Plant

Size: 13

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Website: https://plantapp.io 

Plant is a simple and powerful version control tool that is seamlessly integrated with Sketch. By keeping track of all versions and metadata including date, time, and the user that pushed the specific version, Plant maximizes the efficiency of teamwork and ensures that users have access to the creative history of a project.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/plant

Total funding: -

Last funding: -

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Sketch

Company: Bohemian Coding 

Size: 36

Location: Netherlands and Remote

Website: https://www.sketchapp.com 

Sketch is a design toolkit built to help you create your best work — from your earliest ideas, through to final artwork.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/sketch

Total funding: -

Last funding: - (Series A, February 2015)

Last valuation: -

Core Product:

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Adobe XD

Company: Adobe Inc.

Size: 18,000

Location: San Jose, CA, Unites States

Website: https://www.adobe.com/products/xd.html

Adobe XD is built for today's UX/UI designers, with intuitive tools that eliminate speed bumps and make everyday tasks feel effortless. Get started with free UI kits, icon sets, and everything you need to create amazing user experiences.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/adobe-systems

Total funding: Post IPO

Core Product:

Strengths

Weaknesses

Notes

Marquee Customers

Balsamiq

Company: Balsamiq Studios, LLC

Size: 30

Location: Sacramento, CA, United States

Website: https://balsamiq.com/

Balsamiq is a rapid wireframing tool that helps you Work Faster & Smarter. It reproduces the experience of sketching on a whiteboard, but using a computer.

Making wireframes is fast. You'll generate more ideas, so you can throw out the bad ones and discover the best solutions.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/balsamiq#section-overview

Total funding: -

Last funding: -

Last valuation: -

Core Products:

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Framer

Company: Framer

Size: https://framer.com

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Framer is a tool to design interactive high-fidelity prototypes for iOS, Android, desktop, or the web. It enables users to turn static mockups into interactive prototypes and to experiment quickly with dynamic, native-feeling animations and interactions. It integrates with design tools, exports smoothly to mobile devices, and is powered by the language of the modern web, Javascript.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/framer

Total funding: $9M

Last funding: $7.7M (Series A, November 2017)

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Success Stories

Axure RP

Company: Axure Software Solutions Inc.

Size: https://www.axure.com

Location: San Diego, CA, United States

Powerful prototypes, without coding.

Create simple click-through diagrams or highly functional, rich prototypes with conditional logic, dynamic content, animations, math functions, and data-driven interactions without writing a single line of code.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/axure-rp

Total funding: -

Last funding: -

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Marvel

Size: 11-50

Location: London, England

Website: https://marvelapp.com/

The all-in-one platform powering design. Marvel has everything you need to bring ideas to life and transform how you create digital products. Placing the power of design in everyone’s hands.

Wireframe, design and prototype fast with our intuitive design and prototyping tools. Instantly generate design specs and connect integrations that power up your workflow. From low to high-fidelity, Marvel supports you every step of the way.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/marvel

Total funding: $8M

Last funding: $4M (Series A, December 2016)

Last valuation: -

Core Product

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

UsabilityHub

Company: UsabilityHub PTY LTD

Location: Asia-Pacific (APAC)

Size: 1-10

Website: https://usabilityhub.com

UsabilityHub is a remote user research platform that takes the guesswork out of design decisions by validating them with real users.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/usabilityhub

Total funding: -

Last funding: -

Last valuation: -

Core Product: 

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

Lookback

Company: Lookback Inc

Location:  Palo Alto, CA 94301, United States

Size: 11-50

Website: https://lookback.io

User experience recording made simple. See the screen, face, voice and touches of your users. Record in-house or remotely and without equipment.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/lookback#section-overview

Total funding: $8.2M

Last funding: $6M (Series A, December 2016)

Last valuation: -

Core Products: 

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers

FullStory

Company: FullStory

Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Size: 101-250

Website: https://www.fullstory.com

Meet FullStory, the app that captures all your customer experience data in one powerful, easy-to-use platform. Our tiny script unlocks pixel-perfect session playback, automatic insights, funnel analytics, and robust search and segmentation – empowering everyone in your organization to help build the best online experience for your customers.

Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/fullstory#section-overview

Total funding: $27.2M

Last funding: $15M (Series B, May 2017)

Last valuation: -

Core Product: 

Strengths

Weaknesses

Marquee Customers


Noteworthy mentions

Haiku

https://www.haiku.ai/ 

Interaction Design, Handoff (for animations)

Haiku speaks both design and code — providing the bridge that

connects your digital product workflow. Design in your drawing tools; orchestrate in Haiku; then snap into your codebase. Make updates to production anywhere along the way.

Subform

https://subformapp.com/ 

Screen design, SSOT

Subform is a visual tool for creating dynamic UI layouts. It replaces drawing a lot of pictures—or the endless tweak-reload-tweak cycle—with direct editing and immediate visual feedback.

Overflow

https://overflow.io 

User flows, Collaboration

Overflow turns your designs into playable user flow diagrams that tell a story.

Perforce Helix (P4GT)

https://www.perforce.com/plugins-integrations/graphical-tools-plugin

Graphic Design, 3D Design

The Helix Plugin for Graphical Tools is a useful version control integration for artists and designers looking to streamline their work from their familiar work environments — such as Adobe Photoshop, Autodesk, 3ds Max, Maya, and others.

Resources

Enterprise UX Industry Report 2017 - 2018:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DTRGdgjeSBo0r_5xunAfFWjNj9-sxsJF/view?usp=sharing

UX and User Research Industry Survey Report 2017:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GGY3Q2BgUfYsRGCBvCy5jEV8uuNG3z4c/view?usp=sharing

The State of UX in 2018:

https://trends.uxdesign.cc/

UX Tools - Design Tools Survey

https://uxtools.co/survey-2017

DesignOps Handbook by InVision:

https://www.designbetter.co/designops-handbook