As of the end of April, Autodesk’s SketchBook artwork software has transitioned from a paid subscription model to completely free for individual users. Users can sketch away on any device to their heart’s content without spending a dime.
It would seem Autodesk is in generous spirits this month. Just days ago we reported the release of several Pier 9 (Autodesk’s high-tech fablab) developed workshops on Instructables, and now we hear that one of the company’s slickest apps, SketchBook, is actually free.
For those unfamiliar with SketchBook, it is a multi-platform 2D sketching software (or app, depending on your device). Available in both desktop and mobile versions, it’s pretty distinctive for a pared back look, with the icons and other edge-of-screen clutter disappearing to let you crack on with creating.
As of the April 30th switch over, previous subscribers to the program will now find it free, whereas everyone new coming to SketchBook can simply log in to (or create an account with) Autodesk and download, no strings attached.
Pro tools — in-app purchases from Sketchbook’s subscription days — are part of this new free package. However enterprise users are still subject to a subscription model, which adds features like cross-program functionality with other Autodesk products.
It’s unclear what exactly caused the company to have a change of heart with SketchBook. Reading into the comments on the Autodesk forums, one theory is the recent release of sophisticated Open Source competition in Krita 4.0.0. Whether true or not, Autodesk itself cites the initial spark of creativity and being able to capture that quickly as its reason.
Further reading of SketchBook users’ comments appear to suggest that those only part way into a subscription paid up in advance are not eligible for refunds, which seems rather cold-hearted of Autodesk, if true.
You can check out SketchBook for yourself, here.
License: The text of "Autodesk Ditches Subscriptions for SketchBook, Now a Free Download" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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