Most Popular Wireframing and Notetaking Applications for Designers


The Designers Tool kit

In this survey, 180 respondents who are professionals in design and creative professionalism participated. The aim was to find out which design applications they used the most. This article dwells on the result of the survey for each specific category.

1. 52% uses Google Docs
2. 10% uses Microsoft Word
3. 8% uses Microsoft Excel
4. 8% uses numbers
5. 2% uses Adobe Acrobat

1. 76% uses Drop Box
2. 7% uses Time Machine
3. 3% Uses Carbonite
4. 3% uses
5. 2% uses Crashplan

Wire framing
1. 37% uses OmniGraffle
2. 24% uses Balsamiq
3. 22% uses Axure
4. 9% uses Mockingbird
5. 2% uses Mockflow

Visual Design
1. 46% uses Adobe Photoshop
2. 20% uses Adobe illustrator
3. 7% uses Adobe InDesign
4. 4% uses Adobe Fireworks
5. 2% uses Gimp

1. 75% uses Evernote
2. 4% uses iPad Notes
3. 4% uses Penultimate
4. 2% uses SpringPad
5. 2% uses Simplenote

Text Editor
1. 33% uses Textmate
2. 23% uses Textedit
3. 18% uses Notepad++
4. 8% uses Textwrangler
5. 8% uses SCCEdit

Website Hosting
1. 13% uses Amazon Web Services
2. 13% uses Google Sites
3. 9% uses Slicehost
4. 9% uses 1and1
5. 9% uses Hostgator

Video Editing
1. 50% uses Final cut pro
2. 21% uses Adobe Premiere Pro
3. 14% uses Adobe After Effect
4. 7% uses Camtasia

1. 33S% uses Harvest
2. 33% uses Freshbooks
3. 22% uses Billings
4. 11% uses Healpay
5. 52% uses Gmail
6. 13% uses Microsoft Outlook
7. 12% uses Apple Mail
8. 7% uses Microsoft Exchange
9. 4% uses Sparrow


The following observations were made from the respondents.

• More time is spent with few very important tools. For designers, applications for visual designs, emailing and storage is very essential. Dropbox and Gmail are preferred.

• Users prefer cloud based application. Nevertheless, desktop applications are still being used but it looks like the turning point is near.

• Designers know almost everything there is to be known about the tools they use. They are passionate about everything that concerns the application, from hot keys to hidden gems and tricks.

• There is a clear winner for each category, but for invoicing, web hosting and wire framing, there is no dominating application. Application developers can take advantage of this opportunity.

Hidden Gems And Trending Applications

Here are some upcoming applications that are yet to gain much popularity.

Layervault: This is similar to dropbox for design. It backs up different versions of design files and they are available on demand.
XScope: This is used for aligning, inspecting and measuring graphics on the design screen.
WhatTheFront: This is used to investigate fonts, allowing you to know the name of the fonts and all there is to be known. It has an impressive iOS app.
Dropmark: With this it is easy to save your collection of images in the cloud. It is ideal for sharing screen shots as you work.
GimmeBar: This is used to perform screen grabs of images, videos or text. You can store them all in a single place and sync them with DropBox. It is a great tool to use.
LookWork: This tool places your favorite feeds in a single place.

Survey Participants

Those who participated in this survey were from a company with less than 100 persons.

With respect to location, 51% were from the United States, 28% from Europe and 10% were Americans, excluding the United States. 4% were from Asia, 3% form Australia and 2% from Africa. Middle East contributed 1%.

With respect to industry, 37% were from professional services, 35% were from technology, while 13% were from Arts and Entertainment. 3% from infrastructure, 3% from manufacturing and distribution, 1% from finance, education government and health respectively, 2% from the retail sector and 3% from other industries not listed.