The lessons we should learn from Figma

Figma is the most widely used design tool for websites, apps and pretty much anything digital. At this point, I'd be hard pushed to find a tech company or startup that doesn't use Figma in some way, and that's evident in the $600m in revenue they reportedly gained in 2023 (despite their acquisition with Adobe falling through, netting them an additional $1b for the deal being cancelled)

There are many factors which contributed to its success, but I would put the fact that it was really the first fully-featured design tool that was both in the browser and multi-player to be near the top of that list.

The benefits of browser-based software

It is easy to forget now that Figma has become the de facto design tool, but being able to use it in the browser has a number of clear advantages

  • You don't need to update the software regularly, or download it on each new device you're using
  • You don't need to buy individual licenses to unlock software for you and your team
  • You don't need to bother with file management, transferring files via Dropbox or even email (and therefore also don't need to worry about version control)
  • You're less likely to face compatibility challenges across different operating systems

The benefits of real-time multiplayer

Of course, the most obvious benefit of having Figma in the browser is that you can use it in real-time with everyone else on your team. When I was working with a team, this has been invaluable (particularly while working remotely during the pandemic), where you can collaborate on ideas at the same time, give demos to each other and make sure you're looking at the latest versions while implementing with code

What excites me most

I like to imagine how this paradigm can be applied to other creative industries, and the impact it will have on the creation process

Imagine if you could create music in the browser with as much power as Logic Pro. The power that this would bring to create remixes would also unlock new modes of creation, just as we've seen with the debut of the Duet feature on TikTok.

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