A couple of days ago I’ve read a news article about Trimble being purchased by the First Hawaiian Bank and for a moment I began to worry about the future of the SketchUp.
I only know how to use SketchUp as far as computer drawing software goes and I truly love using it. It’s easy to understand and it is not as expensive as other similar software. With that said, I’m anxious about the future of SketchUp as its current ownership is in the hands of a bank…
I came here just to express my dilemma and hopefully get some assurance that things will go on (with updates and so forth.)
Trimble is the third owner of SketchUp during the time I have been using it. The bank mentioned more than doubled its stake in Trimble but I would guess that the company is worth more than the about 1.35 million dollars of its stock owned by them. I wouldn’t be worried.
My first reaction was, “Wait, Fine Home Building magazine has bought Trimble!?” (@DaveR is quite familiar with their sister publication, Fine Woodworking, but I’m sure their parent publisher isn’t in a position to buy Trimble. Context it everything to abbreviations.)
Trimble has shown much more interest in developing SketchUp and LayOut than Google ever did. If Trimble hadn’t purchased SketchUp and LayOut it would have joined this list since it no longer served Google’s needs.
I would love for SketchUp to break out of Trimble to be owned and run by the people that develop it, so that any earnings stay with SketchUp and the people who make it great, not just any investors or banks who are motivated by making more money.
I would love for SketchUp to cost way more, given it being a classic license and owned by actual people motivated to do a good job with it, and that it would be developed with a huge focus on improving performance.
I would love not to gain new functionality for the next five years – to ‘make performance great again’.
To think about this honestly, SketchUp performance has never been as great as it is today. Try opening a half a gigabyte model in SketchUp 3, for instance. Performance has increased both due to better optimization and, naturally, support for newer hardware. The downside is that our expectations have increased more.
20 years ago, a model with 100 000 edges was considered seriously bloated. Today most expect SketchUp to be able to cope gracefully with a million edges or more.
I used SketchUp around 2008 when it was owned by Google and as much as I loved it, it was crushing a lot.
Sketchup 2018 was my favorite version because it seemed very stable and has almost all the functions it has Today. I put the performance change down to TRIMBLE’s intervention, but I don’t now for sure.