Figma, the Better Design Tool

This is an outline for a matchup of Figma vs Sketch. Figma is the superior design tool in many ways. This list is mainly a response to my personal pain points with Sketch and seeing how Figma alleviates them.

Where Figma beats Sketch generally

  • Cross platform - Windows, Linux, and even Chromebook users can use Figma. You can even view (But not edit) your files on a mobile device.
  • Web based - Everything is a URL. Everything exists on the web, and as soon as you create it, you can share a link to it. Rapid ideation and creation.
  • Multiplayer brings in PMs, Engineers, and more stakeholders than Sketch can. The article “Why Figma Wins” explains this beautifully. “Sketch is a tool for designers, Figma is a tool for design.”
  • Built in Prototyping. No need for Sketch + Invision
  • Version control - Easy roll backs to previous versions because every change is saved. No more V1, V2, V3 in the file names.
  • One Source of Truth - No more “Old” files where development spends time building the wrong thing. No need to hunt down or check for new files.
  • An easy plugin system that syncs across everyone’s workspace.
  • Generous Free Tier for people to get started
  • Because the barrier to entry is so low (It’s a free app with a rather intuitive interface and many tutorials out there) I know many developers who are experimenting with design through Figma. This kind of app literacy helps them become powerful collaborators with designers within those Figma files.
  • An API that opens up possibilities to companies who utilize it. Github uses it to sync their icons from Figma directly into a Repository.

Where Figma beats Sketch for Designers

This list was put together by my designer friend Matt Pringle.

  • Auto layout for buttons is far more simple than Sketch.
  • Type styles are not tied to alignment or even color.
  • Design Libraries are much easier to share across teams and don't store hundreds of tiny files on your computer.
  • Better / easier animations for prototyping compared to Sketch and Invision.
  • Real time collaboration with other designers. It's not just a doc in the cloud.

Todo

  • Merge these into one thorough list, or split it into General, Design, Developer categories. I feel like the three can overlap a good amount, so one list might be best.
  • Make this into a blog post.