Prodigal son Autodesk all smiles with its revived Mac software business

“If you’re in the business of designing things like machines or buildings, there’s a chance you’re using software from Autodesk. Its latest mechanical design software, called Inventor, is used by mechanical engineers to design cars and planes and factory assembly lines,” Arik Hesseldahl reports for AllThingsD. “It’s heavy-duty software, and on Windows, it costs $3,500. A new trial version for the Mac has just recently come out.”

Hesseldahl reports, “While engineering software like this tended to be run on beefed-up Windows workstations during the last decade, the Mac has started to make serious inroads among engineers and designers, especially the younger ones, says Autodesk product manager Kevin Schneider.”

“Autodesk makes four applications available on Apple’s App Store, and the results are pretty stunning,” Hesseldahl reports. “Those applications — Autocad LT, Autocad WS, Motion FX and Sketchbook Pro — have clocked up 2.2 million downloads via the App Store. That’s a lot for any software, and its a heck of a lot when you consider that these applications don’t come for free. Sketchbook Pro goes for $59.99; Autocad LT costs $899.99.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s good to see Autodesk, and especially AutoCAD, back on the Mac in a big way! 1994-2010 was too long to be away. Happy developers make for happy users.

Related articles:
How Autodesk disrupted itself with an iPhone and iPad app – December 7, 2011
Autodesk brings AutoCAD LT, AutoCAD WS to Apple’s Mac App Store – August 16, 2011
AutoCAD for Mac now available – October 15, 2010
Autodesk on AutoCAD for Mac: ‘We could no longer ignore Mac’s comeback’ – August 31, 2010


    1. And while we’re dreaming, Adobe Framemaker, too.
      It sucks that I have to switch to Windows to do all my writing these days (Frame+Canvas are my authoring tools).

  1. All that’s missing on the Mac is a decent desktop crm (daylite is horrible) and a Mac version of Sage accounting, then I’ll be one happy bunny. Finally i’ll be able to rid myself of vmware fusion and virtualised windows (I know, I’m not proud of it but that’s the way it is).

  2. The only reason there hasn’t been a Mac version before was the hand-in-glove relationship between former Autodesk CEO Carol Bartz and microsoft. There was some sort of understanding there would be no Mac AutoCAD as long as she had anything to do with it. Of course Bartz subsequently was recruited by Yahoo to clean up its mess, but wound up making one of her own, and was named the most over-paid CEO in America. Yahoo fired her a few months ago.

  3. Whether we liked it, or not, AutoDesk’s decision to abandon the Mac platform in 1994 was the right business decision. Not until MacOSX fully matured, and was running on an Intel platform, was Mac development a viable business proposition.

    The MacApp Store gave extra incentive to support the platform by greatly reducing distribution costs, and expanding the market’s ability to find the product.

  4. Now if only they could get Autodesk Revit for Mac they would be able to bring in some Architects in on it too. It is some pretty slick software. Several other companies have a 3D drafting program for Mac using Architects.

  5. Wavefront was bought up by autodesk as I recall. Wavefront had some great products for the mac, solid.

    But in my experience with autocad, it is a typical pc program (& company), 2 or 3 as many steps to do what I could do much quicker on my mac programs. And I wonder if this is still so? But I am glad to see them start to wake up. They have some/most of their other programs such as revit to rewrite now. And they are like windoze in that they offer it seems, ten versions of the same program where they could greatly simplify it.

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