Acudesign, again


I was just ready to bite the bullet and buy the Acudesign app.  When I went to the Apple store, I noticed that the reviews for this app were awful and wasn't sure what to do.

To the people that have it:  is it worth it?  is it helpful and easy to use? 

I have Embird, but thought it might be helpful to have everything in one spot.  Plus it looks like you resize designs as much or as little as you need in Acudesign.

I would appreciate your feedback.


Gail in FL

Like a bad microphone, Jim offers this feedback:

Indeed the App Store reviews average out a 1.5 stars. As an App developer I can tell you that the review process is maddening. For a long time it was possible to game the system and submit bogus reviews to make an app look good. They then changed the rules so you can only review an app if you have purchased it. This backfired on us, because when we send out a review copy the reviewer cannot post a review! Enough about that, back to AcuDesign.

AcuDesign is pretty much the same as DRAWings Snap, another app with the same features. They were both created by the same company, Wings Systems Ltd. If you look at the reviews for DRAWings Snap they average 4.5 stars for all versions with MANY more reviews. What??? The difference is that DRAWings Snap is a product written by and for Wings Systems. AcuDesign is a product written for Janome. I doubt that Janome has paid much attention to the reviews, and Wings will not do any updates to it without being paid. If the reviewers would report their frustration back to Janome instead of posting reviews on the App Store it would be enormously helpful.

Here's our take on it. DRAWings Snap is $30, against $50 for AcuDesign. That's deceiving, though, because Snap requires a $50 purchase to activate editing, which is included in AcuDesign. That's a $30 advantagle for AcuDesign. Lettering is an additional $50 in both apps. During the creation of the My 15000 app we spent more time on AcuDesign than any other feature, and there are more videos related to it than the rest of the machine. It took us a lot of ours to explore all the features, and find the pitfalls that are in virtually all software. At that time there was no support for the app. Now if you click the support link in the App Store you get taken to YouTube where they have a series of wordless videos with bad music. There is no place to report problems back to Janome, which is the only entity that can fix the software. Hopefully somebody at Janome is reading this and will correct that oversight.

I've used both DRAWings Snap and AcuDesign. I much prefer AcuDesign, even though the functions are the same. DRAWings seems to be geared toward pushing design purchases, and their free designs are all auto-digitized, which means low quality. You can buy designs in AcuDesign as well, but you get a lot of free designs as well and the latest update includes some of Janome's designs that were digitized by some of the best in the business, really nice. Once Diane developed her complete project video (AcuDesign 9 in the app) she started using AcuDesign for her own projects as well, at least those that don't require a full digitizer. It's a good app, but there is a learning curve.

It's our opinion that tablets like the iPad are the future of computing for most users. Steve Jobs once made the analogy that tablets are cars and laptops and desktops are trucks. Some people need trucks, but most just need a car. Some people like to digitize their own designs, and Wilcom has perhaps the very best tools for that, which Janome offers under the Digitizer product label. But for those who just want to stitch designs that they purchased, AcuDesign is the best tool. You do get free software with the machine (and AcuDesign was also free for a time with the 15000), but the free software requires Windows which opens up a whole new vista of learning.

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