I'm new to affinity designer and for many years I have worked with illustrator and there are so many good tools for a fast workflow from astute graphics. Please, make it happen serif that we can use the tools in affinity designer. Thank you!
I have many of the Astute Plugins for Illustrator and it would really allow Serif to catch up and fill in glaring problems with Designer if they were able to license some of that tech. You look at the various forums and users pleading for offset path, better point reduction, improvements to the expand stroke, better more consistent booleans, users wanting something like the shape builder tool from Illustrator, the list goes on and on.
Yes, Illustrator is some 30 years old but Designer doesn't need to go 30 years to catch up to some of their features. Please, please make this happen. I would gladly pay more for Designer if it had these missing features, especially if it was powered with some of this AG tech.
Also, this is a smart move on Astute's part. There are so many vector apps popping up now, not just Affinity Designer, but other apps like Sketch, Gravit, Figma. I wonder too if their tech could be incorporated in some vector animation apps as well, like Harmony or Moho? Before they had just one revenue stream which was Adobe Illustrator users, but now, it could increase significantly.
I understand that licensing of such technology would increase the price of Affinity Designer, but it also would ad super-powes that Adobe doesn't have in Illustrator.
I think Affinity would get much more clients with this feature built-in Affinity Designer.
I have been prompted to take a look at this thread.
Firstly, thanks to all for the interest from a user's level and kind comments about our products. We've had an amazing response since first posting the Astute Graphics Tech sneak peeks on YouTube a month ago.
Full disclaimer - I am the founder and MD of Astute Graphics, so my opinions are bound to be biased. But here's my thoughts and responses based on my personal experience in the market for years which includes considerable hours behind Affinity Designers since its original release:
Adobe Illustrator has a 25 year head start over Affinity. There is naturally overlap, but I have suggested - and have seen - users adopt both packages simultaneously for different reasons. I always encourage that creatives and technical users make use of the best tools that suit them. There are many reasons why Affinity will be the best for a specific workflow and/or budget.
If you are a professional user, the opinions of cost (Affinity being low cost, Adobe Illustrator Cloud with its 20+ major apps also being very good value) can only be determined on the requirements of a user's workflow. If any tool saves time and money, it is worth its investment. When analysed fully (which is what we've been doing in detail for 10+ years), you may also come to the conclusion that the greatest investment is in the user's time becoming familiar with any new product.
Affinity Designer is an incredible relative newcomer to the market. Long-established competitors to the clear market leader Adobe Illustrator, including CorelDRAW and XARA sadly only remained single platform (by and large). Affinity have taken a much longer view and invested heavily in both Windows and Mac OS platforms. That's not a small task and I personally hugely respect the results.
Since Affinity's release, various other competitors have emerged, albeit for more specific markets such as UI/UX including Figma and Adobe's own XD. It will be interesting to see how these continue to develop and intertwine with Affinity's customer base. Why wouldn't a professional have Illustrator, Affinity and Figma all running in parallel? If one app saves hours on a specific task, then it's once more worth the investment.
Adobe Illustrator is built around the concept of plug-ins. If you delve into the Ai package, you will find all the native plug-ins that make the default tools. This structure is largely opened out to developers over many years which allows Astute Graphics to integrate itself so deeply into the overall toolset. Several years ago, all our Ai panels had to have a colour banner added as customers were commenting that they didn't know what was native and what was Astute Graphics. I am not aware of Affinity's depth regarding extensions; they may feel they have no need to cater for "rich" plug-ins as it would require a significant amount of resources to bring about, maintain and provide 3rd party support for. This is purely a business decision for Serif.
The functionality in our tools can be roughly split up between tools which require interaction (eg. brush-type tools) and "one-button wonders" (eg. path cleaning operations). For interactive tools - which is a significant number of our popular plug-ins - a deep integration would be required. In this case, from a development cost point of view, I am estimating it would be easier for Serif to develop into the core of the product rather than support a complex plug-in architecture. However, the one-button wonders should be easier to add as an extension.
The Bézier vector technology available to license from Astute Graphics would naturally be a great asset to Affinity Designer and we've had too many messages to suggest this to count! But the requirement for an efficient, extensive and top-level workflow is not a requirement just for Affinity; Figma, Corel, Autodesk, et al, - and even Adobe Illustrator - could make immediate use of this. It's what the users are calling out for and has resulted in some very interesting potentials fro us. Please keep an eye out for news from ourselves on this front. I hope that we can work as well with fellow UK companies as we have proven to work for years with our US counterparts...
I have reached out to Serif and look forward to hearing from them.