SketchUp in 2019: where great ideas get to work

As I said, companies interpret these standards differently. Regardless, this is not my decision to make, so while I can listen to your requests, I cannot share future-looking statements with you.

Agreed. And I have made both of those statements in these forums.

1 Like

Chip- I think everyone reading this thread understands you are upset. I am listening carefully and responding thoughtfully and transparently. Please maintain a productive tone here if you want the conversation to continue.

I can’t fully unpack the line of reasoning you’re on, but there’s no basis for the conclusion that we are preparing to end development of SketchUp Pro on desktop computers.


Not upset in the least. I read the tea leaves. I’m moving on-- heck, I started last year. Perhaps you saw my YouTube video on switching from SketchUp to Blender? It already has over 200,000 views.

I think you conflate “not proactively developed” with “ending development.” I certainly expect you will continue to deliver the existing PRO product, albeit with as few feature updates as possible, as long as people are willing to pay for it. And certainly that is within Trimble’s right as the sole owner of SketchUp. I just think a roadmap would be a nice thing for loyal users to see.


John, I didn’t write before in Sketchup Forum and after this release I have something to say, I won’t talk here about the new subscription model because that’s the main reason I’m not using Autocad or Revit right now, If Revit isn’t in the Subscription system for me as an architect Revit is superior, it’s not about money at all for me, I like to own my things even it’s expensive, I Know you since Google has own Sketchup and your First video about Layout release, Sketchup Is outstanding tool no doubt, It’s unique, productive and smart. I’m using SketchUp Since v5, I’m working in a very big Projects with many Classical details, these type of details forced me to learn how to maintain the file size of my Projects, Nick Sonder has inspired me with his Documentation in Layout, the Problem here in many of my projects that I can’t export the plans or elevations to Layout simply because it has complex geometry despite of Sketchup is holding the geometry in a fair way, I think Layout needs to be Developed to at least it can hold whatever SketchUp can.


IMO, roadmaps are tealeaves at most, with all the ‘if and but’ restrictions…

1 Like

Thanks for remaining civil and classy in your responses, I would imagine that isn’t easy under the circumstances.

I hope so and this we could agree on.

Unfortunately it wasn’t, see the quote from Bryce above. The question is clear w.r.t. development to the desktop application, upon which the user replies were based, which in turn led us down this line of discussion. So, again back to my question, why would desktop Pro users be looking for updates on a platform they don’t use?

I (as would any reasonable and sane person) comprehend the magnitude of user wishes / complaints you may be faced with. Some of them have merit, others don’t, then you have wishes that just are not feasible for technological / core programming reasons, and so forth. The problem lies in the same wishes / complaints appearing year after year after year (take a look at the “wish lists” created on this subject matter, and not only on this forum), without any apparent progress. Yet we trust you with our Maintenance and Support money year after year as we realize there may be vast lists of features to be developed and work to be done, yet still hoping and trusting that fixes to problems will be done and passed on, as per agreement.

If you wish to use the analogy of how many users are posting and complaining versus the analytical (thus assumed, which may be a fictional value) amount of users, it is a failed analogy. As you know, it’s about sample groups as you simply cannot reach and get feedback from your entire audience. It’s fair to say that the regular posters on forums (thus not considering people posting about the odd problem that they experience and then never seeing / hearing from them again) could be considered a sample group. How many support subscription licencing? How many are happy with the apparent direction you’re pointing SketchUp in? How many paid their Maintenance and Support and got what for it since SU2018 was released? How many are ecstatic with the list of new features in SU2019? How many of the sample group are begging for improvements to LO? I’m not even talking about Stylebuilder, it doesn’t seem like it gets much love from either the userbase or the developers.

The thing about M&S is that a user of longer than say about 3 years will most likely not be using your support, it’s the maintenance that they’re expecting.

Don’t misunderstand me, we’re appreciative of the long list of bug fixes that were done (the most apparent of these would be window focus stealing, thanks, we know the most are “under the hood” and are not so apparent to all), the question is why these were not released to the userbase as an update (a.k.a. maintenance release), as they are entitled to per their M&S agreement? Was it to bolster appearances of this release as you may have suspected that the community would be less than thrilled about the velocity of development?

Personally I am appreciative of the linestyle feature, even though extensions exist that would do this (in essence) already. I am also appreciative of the DWG / DXF import / export upgrade and the Ruby upgrade (the Ruby progress is invaluable as it often opens up new avenues for 3rd party developers). These I understand would qualify as major release features / upgrades.

Why would desktop Pro users care about the online Free or Shop versions, those are not the products we paid for and (in my and many other cases) have a valid / active M&S agreement for? Why would we be looking there for updates? Wasted our time, yes; wasted our money, yes; wasting more of our time through problems not being researched and fixed, yes.

Considerable value for whom? Perpetual licencing software is where I’m at, not subscription. Subscription is a means to an end, yes, but it doesn’t provide the end-user with value in the long run or if they were to cancel the subscription for whatever reason, they’re locked out of their files / work with no way to manipulate it, please don’t quote deprecated software or versions with licencing prohibitions.

You didn’t have to win our trust, you had it already; we bought your software, we paid you the M&S money and expect you to honor the agreement within the period of time stipulated, it is a bilateral contract. How you treat us will determine that future level of trust.

Fortunately for you, many of the SU users are rather passionate about it (as evidenced by this thread and others), some so heavily invested in it that it would be a bitter pill to swallow to move away (financial loss w.r.t. assets and complementary software purchased, new software costs, new learning curves, unproductive time spent learning, we might end up with the same problems, etc.), it generally wouldn’t be a decision most people would make, unless pushed.


All of the above.


I’m going to revisit your book. I wonder if time and changes in circumstances would lead to any addendum or changes in methodology. I really struggled with the idea of using color and how this would be received by less progressive building departments. I don’t want to run 2 models. I just started using Enscape and it has an interesting feature where a texture can display grey or without color in the model and colored in the real-time viewer by using the tint option.

I’ve drifted off topic. I’m going to go see if your running any kind of blog on your website.


What you may be missing is that these updates were related to getting existing desktop features to work acceptably on Free and to advance the cloud environment without which the web-based versions can’t function, not to fix bugs in the core or add new features that don’t exist in the desktop version. Aside from sharing improved EW, 3DW, and Connect features, there wasn’t much to “pass on” to the Pro desktop. Once the web versions are complete and stable it seems likely that either their update frequency will decrease or that we will see more maintenance releases for the desktop to avoid a feature lag.


A roadmap, regardless of how vague and simplistic would certainly help allay a lot of the uncertainty or fear of the unknown that you sense from the SketchUp users on this board. I don’t see how this could be a bad thing.


But it has to be a formal road map to be perceived as valid.

1 Like

Help me understand, so in the future it’s suspected that SU pro will be online? I have not had much experience with the current online version but wonder how plugins work, or if they work at all, I use a ton of plugins daily, would they be possible online? what about render options? will they also be available to pro users online? Please give more info, decisions need to be made.
Another issue, will the online version handle more poly’s? currently SU buckles on medium size projects and I have to resort to proxy’s to complete projects.

No, @Solo,there is no plan to replace SketchUp Pro. Some members of the forum are forecasting things that don’t have any basis in what the team has said. The idea of the web based solution was to add to the functionality of the current suite of SU solutions, not replace it. No additional specifics to release.


I think part of the confusion that some people are expressing are the result, IMHO, of a poor choice of NAMES for the various possibilities. Particularly the “re purposing” of SketchUp Pro from the OLD meaning of “Most capable, commercial work OK, downloadable version that runs locally.” to the new meaning of “Suite of programs/services that include commercial use OK, unlimited Trimble Connect, SketchUp Shop online, SketchUp Viewer with AR features enabled, and the downloadable package which includes local installation of SketchUp, Layout, and Style Builder with all features enabled.”

I only go back to the 2015 versions, so someone please correctly me if I’m wrong: Ever since Trimble took on SketchUp, “SketchUp Pro” has had a specific meaning: Program runs on your local computer, has no features restricted, and is OK for commercial use, and (at least since 2015) also includes Style Builder and Layout.

Why did Trimble change this??? Would it have been so hard to come up with a different name for the package they decided to call “SketchUp Pro”?


Go take a look at your own Facebook page…read the comments and see for yourself…there defiantly is some confusion going on…

1 Like


I’ll drift off topic with you for a minute…
I have the same issues with color drawings and the building departments. (I’ve whined about it at Nick in the past :)).
I found a plugin a few years ago that was my life saver. Follow the conversations in the links below. The last link has a download for the plug in from Jim.
I am going to have to test it on 2019 or bug Jim to update it if I’m going to switch over to SU2019.


1 Like

@mattd I’d like to hear how that works out in 2019.

You’re not alone on this one.

It’s semantics up to the point where it begins to reach an audience, then it starts to enter into the world of marketing, and eventually transitions over to the role of defining a product in the public space.

Keep a bad name around long enough and you could have a stigmatizing catch phrase you can’t get rid of. (not that we’re in danger of that here).

Classic means entirely different things when viewed from various age groups. For a tech company positioning its products as improved enhancements over old 2D traditions, it’s a fairly ironic use of the word.

Much better to talk about the product from a distance, as being an industry ‘classic’ which helped redefine this, that, or the other. This is an expression of reverence, admiration, respect for it’s acknowledge place in history…

By comparison It’s not such a good idea to use it as part of the actual product name were it attaches itself as a label, and begins to encapsulates and define what the product actually is,…speaking on behalf of the product.

There’s a reason why it feels wrong, on some internal level the word is dragging the product down a little bit—it’s sliding off of the pedestal it was sitting on, and going somewhere else, but not just anywhere, we know where the general direction is pointing to. It’s Pointing To The Past.

…maybe back to a time and a place where…Mark Twain once said:

"The difference between the right word, and the almost-right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning-bug.”

As far as ‘SketchUp’ itself goes, I’d say that’s not just the right word—it’s likely the Perfect Word—and as good a product name as I’ve ever heard. I don’t know who came up with it but I think they did a fantastic job. It would be really interesting to know what some of the other options might have been.


Hmm, I see the confusion. I have been sold and sent a license for SketchUp Pro 2019 from my reseller, but if you are to go to the SketchUp website Pro is “being presented” as subscription only, with Classic being described as the version I have but which is still clearly Pro?

My local reseller on the other hand, makes it much clearer…

Also, “Classic” does not appear on the main “Plans and Pricing” landing page at the SketchUp website as a “go to” option. There’s a tiny link down the bottom to the Classic page. It’s as if they don’t want to sell perpetual licenses anymore, at least to new customers, but make the subscription Pro a direct replacement for Pro as we know it.

Of course anyone new who goes to the SketchUp website will just think Pro is only subscription, without knowing about perpetual licenses in advance…The marketing is just confusing at least.

1 Like