Hi! I'm Tom, a Designer Advocate at Figma. Want to share that Figma Plugins are live today. You can see whats available so far at figma.com/plugins.
Developer documentation to make your own plugin is at figma.com/developers. With our platform we put extra effort into making plugins easy to build, easy to install, and stable. To read more about that check out this blog post: https://www.figma.com/blog/introducing-figma-plugins/
I'll be around today to answer any questions or comments!
I've decided I'm going to stay away from all the plugin conversations, but I'll say just one thing:
I love you <3
Thanks Tom and great work on the Themer plugin!
Thanks so much, Brennan!
This was the only thing Figma was missing. All those people at sketch that were not switching cause they were gonna lose there plugins have no more excuses. The platform is free people and is the best product in the industry at this point. No question about it. If your not making the switch and still paying:
$99/yr for sketch $9/ mo for Zeplin and $200/mo+ at invision
you are behind people. Wake up. Sketch is dead and wont be able to catch up for another 2 years.
Some designer will probably be saying that about Figma in 2 years.
The reality is you need to adapt in a fast-moving tech world. People forgot early adopters of Sketch were loud when the majority of designers were still on Photoshop/AI. I'm loving this competition because it makes all of our products better.
I agree, I just don’t like the X app kills Y app mentality. It’s bullshit. Experienced designers tend to use a range of apps for various tasks. I actually like and am starting to use Figma when I need to make static graphics. But the reality is, it’s getting easier and easier to just design and build with actual code in apps like Xcode etc so I give it 5 years and it’ll be some visual code tool in the spot light.
It's already being done. Hadron, Framer, Phase, etc. In reality this has been tried for so many years that I'm getting tired of the attempts to "visually code". I want the ability to interface my design tool with code, but not be limited by the restraints of code. I personally love Figma for that flexibility within it's API. I imagine just as Photoshop still is used that all tools will continue to grow, and expand with an ever growing market -- each has it's place.
Limited by the restraints of code? There are no limits with code, that’s the best thing about it. The limitations and restraints are more likely a lack of knowledge of code. Swift UI is a great example of the next generation in this visual code.
Sketch still has an open file format. Figma doesn’t seem to have the same interoperability Sketch does. And I like that. Because I’ve been locked in before w Adobe and it suckz
This closed off file type that Figma has is what it will be criticised for in a few years, Its currently a lock in, which adobe were criticised for a few years back. All Web based apps should offer a way to store files offline too. It’s essential in my opinion.
They do offer SVG and PDF export. But it really does feel like they should have an Export > Sketch option. It kind of echoes the high-growth startup ethos where things are kind of friendly ("it's free!") but businesses have to make money somehow... so when does the other shoe drop?
You can save any Figma file offline. I've heard that they are developing working offline, but I have no clue when it's planned. And with the Figma API no file is "locked in". You can extract anything within your document to anywhere with a little effort.
This is cool!
Not at all what I was talking about.
Figma having plugins ≠ Figma having the same plugins.
you are behind people. Wake up
You do realise people can use what ever tool they like to get the job done. If you like Figma that's cool, but Sketch is still a viable option for lots of designers.
What about Sketch is behind Figma that makes it so future proof over Sketch (or other tools)? Why is Sketch "behind" and "dead"?
For me personally, it is about the ecosystem. You need a ton of other software to make the best out of it (quite ironic in a thread about plugins). Zeplin for handoff, Abstract for versioning. You are also locked down on one system (macos).
With Figma being open to anyone who has a computer, we've been able to share the designs in a format we prefer, with the whole company, while having feedback at one centralised place.
though I'm biased, I've made a plugin for the release of the store
I get it, and know it's a great tool. I'm just confused by Shea's "you are behind people. Wake up" mentality!? How can you be a designer and not realise there's no one way to do anything correctly.
Along the lines of one ecosystem - just like Figma have just added plugins - Sketch have just release their Sketch for Teams into beta, which brings with it versioning and comments, and soon handoff. So they are both on a trajectory to having feature parity. And are still both decent options currently for designing UI.
Still waiting Shea to find out why "Sketch is dead and wont be able to catch up for another 2 years."??
I understand. It might be quite hyperbolic when it is presented like this, but I'm sharing the same sentiment. I've been a very early adopter of Sketch (even back when Sketch was two different apps), I've made lots of templates, libraries and content. I even sold some stuff. It helped me grow as a designer quite a bit and I'll be forever grateful for that!
But over the years I got the feeling of a sinking ship. There were too many bugs, plugins that were breaking my experience constantly, crashes, and even lost work. And this haven't changed much in the recent years (or so I hear from my teammates). So while big things are coming I'm quite skeptical. I was just burned too many times.
While in case of Figma, most (not all), but most of the stuff they worked on made sense. They had a clear roadmap. It had (has) bugs, but they were not as critical.
When I think about it I just lost confidence in Sketch, and got a feeling that they are seriously behind. In terms of performance, plugin ecosystem, hand off, and design systems (ui libraries).
I had a similar experience. I tested the pre-release version of Sketch, and I even supported the communities growth as an Admin on Team Sketch back when it was on Slack. But the performance, and kludgy API resulting in plugins breaking with every version update made me look around. Now with Figma it's a universally accessible platform. It just makes sense to spend my money with them.
First off, totally agree about tool choice. End users of digital products don't know or care whether the interface was designed in Sketch, Figma, XD, etc. Whatever helps you ship your best design is your best tool.
That said, as someone who used Sketch for four years before switching to Figma, I think I can objectively point out a few things that put Sketch in a tougher spot today.
First, Figma works on PCs. Sketch does not. You may care less if you are on a Mac, but there are many enterprise organizations still stuck in PC land.
Second, you can collaborate in real time in Figma. You can't in Sketch today.
Sketch won't be able to roll out those features until 2020, if ever. That said, Sketch is far from dead … but just as Sketch changed the game a few years back, it feels like Sketch is now the incumbent, not the innovator, in this space.
All those people at sketch that were not switching cause they were gonna lose there plugins have no more excuses.
Not the reason why I am not switching.
Shaming other designers is not a great way to advocate for something you think they should be doing. I'd class this as shaming.
Perhaps a better approach might be to explain a bit more about where you feel Sketch is lacking in comparison to Figma?
who is paying $200/mo for invision??? not an individual designer surely
I love that these plugins can be viewed inside the Figma interface :)
I'm loving these already, awesome work
Funny that Figma launch plugins when sketch launch teams. I’m still fixated on sketch, I just like control of the UI. Although I’m growing more tempted by figma by the day. Am I just an old dog?
some years ago, i felt the same way about photoshop compared to Sketch. Why go with Sketch when I've been working with adobe stuff for 20+ years?
suddenly Sketch took off, and i stubbornly stuck with photoshop...
I can remember a point when i started thinking... have i gotten old? am i still relevant? everyone seems to have moved over to Sketch while I'm still using this old photoshop... shit, folks stopped making plugins and stuff for it! all the new plugins and addons were going with Sketch.... THAT was the moment i knew i'd let things go to far...
but by then i felt that it was too big a mountain to climb?...how can i get started NOW in Sketch?...it's all getting too complicated...
not long after that I tried Figma, and it felt like a new lease on life for an old designer :) it's been a few years now, and I still can't believe how incredible a program Figma is... although I've learned my lesson, and am always keeping my eyes open for new apps as well :)
so what you are saying is, FOMO ultimately made you abandon your tools?
Really great story and you’ve made a good point. For me though, is the sketch vs Figma debate as dramatic as sketch vs photoshop was? Photoshop was 1.0 and Sketch was 10.0 for UI Design. To me it feels like Sketch is 10 and Figma is 11, is it really worth changing my workflow for incremental improvements?