When I am freelancing and looking to pick up clients, they often have an idea that (insert new program here) is best for wireframing and ask that you have a portfolio using that single program. The problem with this is that are are dozens of programs, and new ones coming out quite regularly. So, what’s the deal with that?
My wireframe program of choice is Adobe XD. I can start simple, create user flows, easily create a live prototype, and then turn it into a full color mockup. Importing images and color schemes from other adobe products is fast. Most importantly, it’s free! I like money, do you like money? That’s what I thought. It’s the least requested from my clients and at times seems invisible in the market, but it runs super smooth and over the years I have had zero issues.
The most popular program I see requested is Sketch. I’ve used sketch, and I love the animation abilities that XD lacks – but it’s not necessary for a wireframe and has a hefty price tag. If the client is willing to foot the bill, great! I don’t understand why, but that’s fine! The dark interface is nice *cough Adobe* …but it is just another prototyping app. It has many of the same features with a few unique ones that might save a few seconds, thought it doesn’t have the user flow mapping feature.
Balsamiq is another one that I’m quite familiar with though it feels radically different than the previously mentioned. There are two style options, one being Comic Sans & Co, though it makes incorporating their preloaded icons easy. It’s meant to keep things extremely simple – but you can publish working prototypes and share those with your team. There’s a monthly fee that compares to Sketch for unlimited projects, though you can opt for 2 projects at a lower cost while exporting and importing projects when needed.
At the end of the day, they’re all meant to do the same thing, create wireframes and prototypes for user interfaces. So… they should all be pretty easy to navigate for the people using them… who design interfaces. Hooray!