Android App for Viewing 2D or 3D CAD Designs

February 6, 2012
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    Computer-Aided Design (CAD) applications have already invaded the mobile platform. Although most of such programs’ mobile versions may not be as sophisticated as the desktop ones, the main point here is that more and more productivity applications are now brought into the mobile platform. This would mean that mobile devices like tablets and smartphones are getting more useful, productivity-wise.

    One of the companies who ventured into a CAD app is IMSI Design. The company is known as one of the leading providers of CAD software applications. It has an array of products that are specifically tailored for computer-aided design. One such CAD product from IMSI is the TurboViewer app for Android.

    Pros

    TurboViewer is capable of rendering not just 2D designs but also 3D designs. This is a feature that is unique to TurboViewer.  Other mobile CAD apps don’t have such feature.

    The user interface of the app is simple and straightforward. You will not be bombarded with so many menus that might be confusing at times. All you see is a clean and tidy user interface without clutter.

    The app may take a few seconds to render a design depending on how big the file is, but once it is already up on the screen, you can easily rotate or zoom in and out of the drawing. The animations on this app are very fluid.

    The app is free, too–so, that should be one of the biggest perks here. You can upgrade to a premium version, though, to gain access to more features.

    And, last but not the least, the makers of the app just very recently released a software development kit (SDK) for the app. This will mean that the app will be improved. Better versions of the app will surely come out once developers can get hold of this SDK.

    Cons

    This might not really be a big disadvantage of the app, but it’s worth mentioning. The app can only recognize the directory it has created during the installation process. The app doesn’t have a way to browse for files saved in other directories.

    The features in the app are very decent and good. But, they are very limited. You don’t have that many on the menu to choose from.

    The free version of TurboViewer is ad-supported, and the ads can be a bit annoying at times. This will go away though if you get the premium version. If you want to stick with the free one, you have to get used to those advertisements.

    The app will eat up around 43 MB of storage space when installed on a device. This might not be that much, but for a viewer app, this is a bit big.

    Conclusion

    TurboViewer is a good app. This might even be the first free app that offers 3D viewing capability–something which makes it stand out from the rest. The cons we listed above, as you can see, are really minor ones, and can easily be overshadowed by the great features this app has.

    Looking at the bigger picture, tablets and smartphones are said to be the future of mobile computing. It is even predicted that mobile devices will someday replace laptops and netbooks. And, with the developments we are seeing nowadays, this may not be a far future. These devices are becoming more powerful nowadays. Someday soon we’ll be seeing a full-fledged CAD app running on our mobile devices.

    If you want to try this amazing mobile CAD app from IMSI Design, download TurboViewer free from the Android Market.

    Comments

    • zlagger

      And it reads what file formats???

      • Guest

        DWG and DXF

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