Today Autodesk (NASDAQ: ADSK) announced the 2015 releases for AutoCAD for Mac and AutoCAD LT for Mac, two of the leading computer-aided design (CAD) tools for CAD-based professionals on the Apple Mac OS X platform.
The latest Mac releases of AutoCAD make it easier than ever for businesses and students to create drawings and designs on the platform of their choice without sacrificing important functionality that is key to everyday design workflows. Users of the Mac versions of AutoCAD can share their work with their colleagues that are using the Windows versions of the software for uninterrupted collaboration.
“The new releases of AutoCAD for Mac and AutoCAD LT for Mac are among the most significant updates in the products’ five-year history,” said Amy Bunszel, vice president of AutoCAD products at Autodesk. “This release has some rich new features but at its core, it is about eliminating the dead ends that prevent people from being as effective as they can be when working together on design projects.”
Micah Dickerson, product manager for AutoCAD for Mac products stated to Architosh that AutoCAD for Mac has seen “great demand in just the latest release cycle” and that Autodesk is “very aware of the 80 million active Mac users Apple now has in the market.” With Apple’s new partnership with IBM for enterprises companies like Autodesk are keenly watching for Apple to grow not just iOS but Mac OS X within businesses.
Key and New in AutoCAD for Mac 2015
- Dynamic Blocks — Mac users gain the ability to create and edit Dynamic Blocks—a capability previously limited to Windows users. This feature enables them to insert one block that can change shape, size, or configuration instead of inserting several static blocks
- Layer States — Mac users can also now save their layer settings as Layer States, which store information like color, line type, and information about whether a layer is turned off, frozen, or locked.
- Data Linking — Users who need to link a table in AutoCAD with an Excel spreadsheet can now use the new Data Linking Feature with Excel for Mac. Changes made in Excel will auto-populate and modify the table in AutoCAD for Mac 2015
- Quick Select — this tool allows users to quickly select objects based on query criteria, enabling users to easily select exactly what they need in their drawing. The Quick Select tool also includes a “preview” option so that users can see what they’re about to select before they commit to the selection
“AutoCAD for Mac 2015 is a fantastic release with a surprising number of significant new features,” said Graham Merritt, intern architect at FRANCL Architecture. “We’re very pleased where this product is going.”
“With the newest release and its added functionality, I can finally leave Windows behind and use AutoCAD LT for Mac as my drafting and design software of choice,” said Kendra Swartz, lead designer, Liederbach and Graham Architects.
To learn more about AutoCAD for Mac 2015 and its LT little sister app (both are fully native on OS X) read here.
Micah Dickerson, product manager for AutoCAD for Mac spoke to us just recently about this new release and we can’t wait to share that fuller conversation. But the interesting news that is worth noting today is that Apple now has 80 million Mac OS X active users in the world and the addressable “CAD market” for those users is estimated, as Dickerson noted, at between 1-3 percent. This is the first time we have heard Autodesk put a number on an estimate or informed guess on the potential CAD market for OS X and at just 1 percent we are talking 800,000 users and at three times that (3x) we are at 2.4 million. Let’s be conservative and say that Autodesk is right but only at the more modest end, putting the OS X CAD market at around 1.25 million users. If Autodesk captures just 10 percent of this market, or 125,000 users, that is a substantial business when one runs the math. Was it worth it for Autodesk to re-enter the Mac CAD market back in 2010? With Apple’s solid and growing Mac OS X user base, it is turning out to be a very solid move on the part of Autodesk.
This release is really about working with others on AutoCAD who run the program on Windows. Micah Dickerson told us that the reasons for not deploying AutoCAD on Macs are essentially all gone—especially for the class of customers whom choose to run AutoCAD on Mac to begin with. We will share a bit more about who those folks are in our upcoming feature!