Question for Sketchup

These are two questions for Sketchup or Trimble, but it appears you can only get in touch with their resellers, hence I post it here:

  1. Why is it that the user interfaces for Mac differs so much from the UI in Windows?
    I am a user of both and it is rather (and unnecessarily) confusing, plus, the Windows UI seems more logic.

  2. Is Trimble investing in keeping the Mac UI current and/or what are the plans to upgrade it?

You are not likely to get an official response from Trimble. They keep their plans and reasons very private.

Not an official Trimble answer, but just the way I see it…

The two UIs are designed to be native looking. Having a Windows 10 tray system on Mac would look odd, and having a macOS color palette on Windows would be strange too. I don’t mind the differences as much as I would mind being forced to have a different OS’s look and feel.

Most of us at SketchUp are using MacBook Pro, I hope we keep the Mac version current!

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I find this confusing. I use MBP and feel I have the wrong hardware for SketchUp.

To the main discussion though, I do have other applications that have uncontrolled floating palettes, they are just never as poorly behaving as SketchUp’s.

I also have apps that do not follow the Mac tradition and allow you to organize and anchor the palettes. For SketchUp I think this would be better.

There are definitely levels of window organization available in the MacOS. One extreme is Blender where everything can be crammed into one window and another is Thea where windows move around annoyingly while you work.

The highest end Nvidia GPUs may well be better than the best Radeon GPUs in MacBook Pro, but I did a test recently when I ran a Windows benchmark with my work MacBook Pro (which is slightly older than my own MacBook Pro) running Bootcamp. It came out better than about 75% of real PCs. The same test as macOS wasn’t quite as good, but still not too bad.

I’ve done other tests where doing a particularly demanding SketchUp task on a real PC laptop was a lot slower than the same test running in Parallels Windows 10 on my MacBook Pro. I think that difference was mostly down to me using SSD and the PC using a hard drive.

One thing, I think that few people at SketchUp do as demanding a model as can be done, and for those users who do make such models, having a very fast PC with SSD and Nvidia high end GPU, could be a good thing.

I just got a new one and when I migrate to that we’ll see… My primary issue is watching the beachballs when clicking into the materials. If I can texture models any other way I will.


SU v20 is definitely better at Material handling then earlier versions, but there are still a few ‘mac’ only issues…

unoptimised images can cause ‘massive’ slow downs…


I see that I might help things by policing the textures I bring in, then only load the full texture in the renderer.


I was a Windows user for a very long time, then about 5 years ago switched to Mac. At first I thought it was a big mistake relative to SU, but there have been great improvements in the Mac version in recent years. My only big gripe right now is in creating and editing materials. I find that very un-intuitive and difficult to use. Other than a few quibbles about a few palettes that behave oddly, all is great. I can’t imagine SU abandoning the Mac users. There are a lot of us.

How should a material be optimised then if you want it to be efficient?

Thank you for the replies and comments to my original two questions.