Today’s engineers and designers carry their lives – their contacts, calendars, texts and emails – in their pockets and now they’ll be able to bring their CAD system wherever they go, too.
Onshape for Android is the first professional 3D CAD system to run on Android phones and tablets.
The new mobile release comes just five months after the launch of Onshape Beta, the only full-cloud 3D CAD system that lets everyone on a design team simultaneously work together on the same model using any web browser, phone, or tablet.
“We founded Onshape with a vision to make CAD accessible on any device, anywhere,” says Onshape founder and Chairman of the Board, Jon Hirschtick. “We’re proud to be the first in the industry to run on Android. And by ‘run,’ I mean really run. You’re not just viewing models. You’re able to sketch, extrude, fillet, shell, create 3D models, edit their shape and size, and put them into assemblies. Wherever you go, Onshape is there.”
Tens of thousands of CAD enthusiasts are now using Onshape Beta to design products, with full mobile access being one of their most requested enhancements. Onshape for Android is available now for free in the Google Play store.
For the first time, professional 3D CAD users are no longer restricted to one primary workstation, as their data is now readily available on any device. In addition to Android, Onshape also runs on iPhones and iPads – and in a web browser on Mac, Windows, and Linux.
The Onshape development team created a precise touch-screen interface that replaces the traditional keyboard and mouse interactions. Every CAD command and action is controlled with a swipe of your finger.
“When we first started, a lot of people were skeptical that CAD could be done on such a small device,” explains Ravi Reddy, team lead for Onshape Mobile. “We solved the precision selection problem and made sketching easy with touch-based finger offset tools. We added intuitive lock and unlock modes to help with pan, zoom, and rotate operations for sketching and assemblies.”
“We rejected the standard notion of providing a view-only version of CAD on mobile or choosing a subset of features,” he adds. “We were determined to build a full CAD product that can be used anywhere and from any device.”
The mobile app is not intended to replace Onshape’s use on desktops and laptops – it is meant to greatly expand a CAD user’s access to their work outside the home or office. Early testers of Onshape for Android say they now appreciate the flexibility to CAD where they never imagined:
- Silas Hughes, R&D engineer for Rest Devices, creator of the Mimo Smart Baby Monitor: “Onshape’s Android app is snappy and smooth. It already has become a tool I use and trust when fabricating.”
- Ben Nahill, computer engineer at MIT Lincoln Laboratory: “It’s surprisingly solid! I don’t have to carry my laptop with me when I go to the machine shop. It’s nice not to have a big computer or a bunch of printouts when I’m just looking up some dimensions.”
- William Rae, instrumentation specialist, RPS Group: “Right now the ability to view shared models while away from a workstation is wonderful. We’re an oceanographic consulting company and my team mostly does instrumentation platforms that measure waves and currents. Thanks to the mobile capabilities of Onshape, I’ve been able to view documents even while I was on a ship 30 miles offshore using a satellite Internet connection.”
CAD users interested in learning more about how to design on their phone or tablet can visit Onshape.com/learn. To create a free account, visit Onshape.com/signup.
Filed Under: Rapid prototyping