Introduction to Axure - Part III - The Pros & Cons Of Axure RP

Posted 7/10/2014 2:08 PM by Michael Nelson and Curtis Lauterbach

In the third part of our series examining Axure we have listed our Pros and Cons about using Axure RP.  Axure is a fantastic program for producing wire frames and prototypes. The intuitive nature makes drafting ideas quick and easy, no matter if they are low or high fidelity prototypes. With a multitude of easy to use functions and a variety of online resources, Axure is one of the best programs for prototyping.

Pros

  • The drag and drop interface and elements provides for quick and easy designing.
  • Axure provides tons of online libraries of icons, widgets, templates (including smartphone templates), and other elements.
  • Axure’s ability to include interactions (i.e. buttons take users to specific pages) makes creating functioning prototypes easy.
  • All in one prototyping program – Axure makes it possible to move progressively from placeholders to high fidelity prototypes in the same program.
  • Text elements come standard with dummy text (“Lorem ipsum”) decreasing designing time and providing a real feel when composing placeholders.
  • Axure allows you to post your prototype in a secure website so stakeholders can interact with it (provide users with link and optional password optional).
  • Axure allows the user to export pages as images, making it easy to present to stakeholders or others who don’t have Axure.
  • Axure is reasonably priced with the standard edition costing $289 and the professional edition $589.
  • Axure offers students with good grades a free license.
  • Online training in both video and written formats make learning easier.
  • Axure’s online community is great as you can post ideas, discuss topics, and get answers from different forums.

Cons

  • The dynamic panels can be a pain to deal with as some of the functions in the dynamic panels are not intuitive.
  • Axure’s standard library of shapes is primitive, often requiring extensive editing or imported libraries of shapes to fit the needs of the given project. On top of this, editing shapes and the shape of photos in Axure can be difficult, also often requiring other libraries of shapes or imported images.
  • Many of the templates and libraries for additional widgets and icons from Axure’s site are for purchase only.
  • We have encountered multiple issues with presenting material from a computer to a screen with a different resolution using the preview function. This usually results in a distorted version of the original design in the preview mode. We recommend exporting the Axure pages to images for presentation unless the screen resolutions are the same.
  • You can only collaborate with others (from different accounts) on the same project from a professional account.
  • Axure does not have an extensive font selection.
  • It would be beneficial for developers when coding a project if Axure included more CSS options that developers could inherit from.

Article Series

  1. Introduction to Axure
  2. Using Axure RP
  3. The Pros and Cons of Axure RP
  4. Project Lifecycle with Axure RP
  5. Usablility Testing with Axure RP