Review : Sketch version 70 Big Sur UI update

November 21, 2020

According to the blog post from Sketch. The update of sketch 70 consist of an UI of the app to be more aligned with MacOS Big Sur.

Blog post on version 70 update

Details of update

UI impressions

Image from Sketch blog

Orange instead of blue

I need to get use to the new orange color. At first I thought the orange might be too strong. Or even distracting. After a while I got used to it. And feels like it’s better to quickly scan my tool bar. I checked if there are options to change the colors. Looks like there isn’t an option to change.

Point colors are orange

Icons are the big change

From filled icons. It’s now lined icons with slight fill. Similar to the ones you see in MacOS finder menu. I like the change. The icons stand out more.

The change doesn’t matter that much. Because I use almost shortcuts for everything and not use the menu. But where it stands out is the layers panel. The difference of elements are more clear.

Layers panel, more clear icons

But still some icons I need to get used to. I like the layer forward/backward icons. Maybe it looked like that before. I thought it was a tidy up or stack icons. Next change is the symbols icon. It was a circle with arrows. Now it’s this diamond shape. I was wondering what it was at first. So there is a slight learning curve to the new UI.

What icon is this?
What icon is this?

Why the UI change?

My assumption of Sketch investing into this UI change is to position different from Figma. As Figma usage is rising sharp. Sketch needs to try to keep dominance. As you know Figma’s advantage is web based and can do simultaneous design on the same file is a big plus. Sketch cloud feature on the other hand is limited. But the advantage of Sketch is it’s a native app to Mac. And to show this off, the UI change was a good move I think.

My designer friends ask if Figma is reliable no not. How the performance web based. I think there is still a bias. But let’s see how it turns out.

Is it Apple silicon M1 ready?

Big sur update was really about the transition to Apple silicon. But what about Sketch. Is it optmized.I Not yet I think. Because the update didn’t mention anything about it. And would be a great update to promote. Maybe it will come soon. As I feel sketch not being the smoothest to use. Being optimized for M1 would be a big boost for Sketch.