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AutoCAD Hits the Mac and Mobile Platforms

AutoCAD Hits the Mac and Mobile Platforms

Are you an avid AutoCAD user and a Mac enthusiast who's long been frustrated because the two live in separate worlds? Well, they don't anymore.

Autodesk just announced a new version of its professional design and engineering application that runs natively on Mac OS X and exploits all of the features and functionality unique to the Mac platform. Accompanying the new AutoCAD for Mac release is AutoCAD WS, a mobile application that extends AutoCAD to Apple's iOS, enabling the design tool to run on the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.

"This is really all about making AutoCAD accessible to everyone," said Guri Stark, vice president of AutoCAD and platform products, in a press conference announcing the new platforms. "For the last few years, AutoCAD was limited to just running under Windows, but recently because of the importance and growing market share of the Mac platform and due to many requests by our customers, we're making AutoCAD available on the Mac and mobile platforms."

While AutoCAD users will recognize the new version - it supports the full feature set, including 3-D navigation, 3-D meshing and materials capabilities - the software has been designed to take full advantage of the unique Mac interface. Users can graphically browse design files with the Cover Flow interface common to the Mac, for example, as well as take advantage of Multi-Touch gestures on Mac notebooks or the Magic Mouse to leverage intuitive pan and zoom features. User experience design patterns, such as the visual approach to drawing and layout management, have also been incorporated into AutoCAD for Mac.

Interoperability between the Mac and Windows versions is another big focus. The new release offers support for native creation and editing of files in the DWG file format, ensuring easy collaboration with customers and suppliers regardless of the platform. Files created in previous versions of AutoCAD will open seamlessly in AutoCAD for the Mac, reducing the time-consuming translation and clean-up process of converting data. There are also extensive API and customization options that let tailor-built workflows and custom configurations for setting and screening real estate options to be modified to individual workflows. "We're looking to provide the best-in-class DWG interoperability between Windows and Mac that ever really existed," said Rob Maguire, product manager for AutoCAD for Mac.

Accompanying AutoCAD for Mac is the new AutoCAD WS mobile application, a free app that will be available through Apple's App Store. The app extends AutoCAD to Apple's iOS, enabling users with a wireless connection to edit and share AutoCAD files on an iPad or iPhone. This will allow real-time collaboration and co-design sessions on-the-go, officials said.

Both new applications, to be delivered in October, were developed as part of an extensive beta program involving more than 5,000 early customers.

AutoCAD Hits the Mac and Mobile Platforms
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