Part of your world: Why we’re proud to build a truly native Mac app

Ten years after the first release of Sketch, a lot has changed. The design tools space has grown. Our amazing community has, too. Even macOS itself has evolved. But one thing has remained the same: our love for developing a truly native Mac app.

Native apps bring so many benefits — from personalization and performance to familiarity and flexibility. And while we’re always working hard to make Cloud an amazing space to collaborate, we still believe the Mac is the perfect place to let your ideas and imagination flourish.

In this post, we thought we’d highlight just a few of the benefits that come with native macOS apps.

It’s the things you see…

When you use a truly native app, you get all the benefits that come as standard with the platform — and for macOS, there are plenty! You can work across multiple windows, or in multiple tabs. You can manage your own local files in Finder, and browse back through previous versions saved on your Mac’s built-in storage. Then there’s Time Machine, which helps you keep a full history of your local files in case you want to revert to a much older layout, grab an important Symbol you accidentally deleted months ago, or just keep a full backup of all your work from v1.0 to your finished file.

Then there are the built-in customization options. Want to tweak a shortcut for a tool you use regularly, or add a new shortcut entirely? Take advantage of macOS’ custom keyboard shortcuts and create your own from System Preferences — putting your favorite Sketch features at your fingertips. Plus, it’s easy to completely customize your toolbar with a Ctrl-click, just like you would in Finder or Mail. Learn the method once and it’s easy to put the tools you need the most easily within reach. When it comes to personalizing your app to suit your workflow and preferences, native apps have the controls you need.

We think the best way to design is in a truly native application, built beautifully — and made for macOS.

Best of all, native Mac apps like ours are designed to fit with the rest of the operating system. It’s hard to quantify, but if you use Apple’s built-in apps you immediately get a ‘feel’ for how things should work in native apps. When an app ‘fits in’ with the rest of the OS, it doesn’t just look and feel more at home on your Mac — it lowers the learning curve when you first open it. That’s why we (and plenty of other great macOS developers) work hard to follow the conventions set out in Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines, so that our Mac app has that same, familiar feel. And you can start using it instantly, from the first click.

This is something we pride ourselves on — over the years we’ve taken design cues from Apple, working hard to make your experience feel consistent and natural whenever you switch from our Mac app to apps like Pages or Keynote. We support UI changes, such as Dark Mode, as they launch. And right now we’re putting the finishing touches to a major UI update so that our Mac app will still look perfectly at home when macOS Big Sur releases later this

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