Google releases free SketchUp 3D-modeling software for Apple Mac

Google has released a free Mac version (Beta ) of its SketchUp 3D-modeling software.

Google SketchUp is an easy-to-learn 3D modeling program that enables you to explore the world in 3D. With just a few simple tools, you can create 3D models of houses, sheds, decks, home additions, woodworking projects – even space ships. And once you’ve built your models, you can place them in Google Earth, post them to the 3D Warehouse, or print hard copies.

Google SketchUp is free for personal use. No registration is required.

According to Google, SketchUp is a simple but powerful tool for quickly and easily creating, viewing and modifying your 3D ideas:
• Click on a shape and push or pull it to create your desired 3D geometry.
• Experiment with color and texture directly on your model.
• Real-time shadow casting lets you see exactly where the sun falls as you model.
• Select from thousands of pre-drawn components to save time drawing.

Google Earth 3.0.640 or higher is required to work with SketchUp.

The following configuration options are necessary to use SketchUp with Google Earth:
1. Elevation Exaggeration must be turned to 1 in Google Earth (Tools > Options > View)
2. Terrain must be turned on in Google Earth. Click on the Terrain check box toward the bottom middle of Google Earth to turn on terrain.
3. Change your image resolution in Google Earth to Large (Tools>Options>View>Detail Area) to ensure the best image snapshots in SketchUp.

Google SketchUp is not a Universal application. It will run under Rosetta on Intel-powered Macs.

More info and download link here.

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Related MacDailyNews article:
Google releases Google Earth Beta 4 Universal Binary for Intel-based Macs – June 12, 2006


  1. all well and good but wheres our universal MAYA???? starting to get worried, dont wanna have to get a pc lol, come on Autodesk, we know you never used to love us but times are a changing, – ps anyone else heard any news on this? ? ?

  2. Me too – dang, what a cool app! There are small bugs, but the thing is so much easier than any 3D tool I’ve ever used that I am left breathless. I don’t know if it’s exceptional in the modern 3D world, but it sure beats Pro/E (as I used in a few years back) in ease-of-use.

    And free. Dang.

    Lacks some regular solids (spheres and rotations, for example), but is still wildly fun.

  3. Still no damn Universal Binary though!!!!! GRRRRRRR!@$#!%^&@$!$@

    Whats the point of releasing something 2-3 months after the initial release IF IT WONT EVEN RUN QUICKLY ON THE NEWEST COMPUTERS.

  4. Autodesk (AutoCAD) is the Microsoft of the CAD world. They’re everywhere, widely used, but no where near the best solution- especially when it comes to true 3D modelling. Better off with Unigraphics, Pro-E, or SolidWorks. No Mac version of those apps yet either. 🙁

  5. This is actually a bigger deal than you might know:

    Sketchup has quickly become one of the de facto front-end design tools for MANY architects, and is (for instance) already a standard app in major firms. We did the concept design for a major project with Sketchup. Of course, eventually all roads for real production work still lead to AutoCAD, but this may encourage at least the design side of major architectural firms to consider re-Mac-ing.

  6. Here are the requirements from the ReadMe (yes, Jaguar seems to be supported):

    Hardware and Software Requirements (Mac)

    Operating System
    Mac OS® 10.3 (Panther) or higher

    Hardware (Minimum Requirements)
    400 MHz PowerPC™ G4
    128 MB RAM 80 MB of available hard-disk space
    QuickTime 5.0 and web browser for multimedia tutorials
    Video card that is 100% OpenGL compliant

    Hardware (Recommended Requirements)
    1 GHz G5 or higher
    512 MB RAM
    3-button, scroll-wheel mouse

    Google Earth Compatibility
    Google Earth 3.0.640 or higher is required to work with SketchUp.

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