eDrawings Pro for iPad is here! ( #edrawingsforipad )

The Pro version of eDrawings on iPad, called eDrawings Pro for iPad,  is now available from the Apple App Store. This is a new app ($4.99 for 30 days or so, then $9.99 regular price) that goes beyond viewing SolidWorks documents. All of the same formats can be viewed (SolidWorks files, eDrawing formats and .DWG). Now, you have the ability to cut section views, measure, and read and write a variety of comments.  All images in this article are actual screen shots.

Overview

The official name of the new app is eDrawings Pro for iPad from SolidWorks. This new product release brings core eDrawings Professional functionality to the iPad.  In addition to viewing, you can now inexpensively markup native SolidWorks files on a mobile device.  Additionally, permissions (such as the ability to measure) that are saved into eDrawings files via SolidWorks are respected in this mobile version.

User Experience

Similar to eDrawings for iPad, when the app is started, you are presented with a menu of models and drawings. There is an area of sample models and an area for your files, called “User Files”.

The sample files provide good cases to try out new eDrawings Pro for iPad functionality. The User Files area lists any files which you have added to your iPad to view in eDrawings Pro.

When you open a supported 3D file, you can rotate, pan, zoom in and out, zoom fit, zoom home (last view when file that was saved). Same as eDrawings for iPad, this Pro release can Play a model by transitioning between different views of the model.

While eDrawings Pro for iPad remains in memory, leaving and returning to the app will maintain settings and view orientation of the file that was left open.  This can potentially save a fair amount of time.

There has also been several incremental improvements too, such as an improved docking panel to allow quicker access to drawing sheets, configurations (models and assemblies), and components (assemblies).

Measure

You can now measure models in eDrawings formats where permission has been allowed by the SolidWorks.  When entering the measure tool, you are presented with the Measure cursor.  Simply tap and drag the cursor over the geometry you wish to measure, then tap again to select the highlighted element.  Tap and drag again and select a second geometric element to measure the distances between two elements.  The results will be very familiar to users of both eDrawings and SolidWorks.

Similar to the desktop version of eDrawings, filters are provided to speed up the element selection process.

Section View

Section View tool allows you to peer into the model, with a number of options.  You have the ability to view a cutting plane in the Y-X, Y-Z, and the Z-X directions.  You can also flip the side of the cut.

Showing the cutting plane is optional, though keeping the plane visible allows you to adjust the cut location while the section view is shown.  Just tap on the plane and drag it (tip and trick alert!).

You can also show or hide the cut cap when you want to control the level of detail along the cutting plane.  Additionally, a section view can be viewed while working within other tools, such as Measure.

Comments

What would a Pro version of eDrawings be without the ability to create comments!   Supported comment types are Text (with no border, and Box , Cloud and Ellispe borders), Freehand shapes, Dimensions, Insert Photo, and Take Photo (with iPad camera).

Comments scenes are automatically saved and retreivable from the Markups tab of the docking panel.

Hide and Show

For assemblies, there are now tools to control display settings for individual components, including Show All and Isolate functions.

Bottomline

eDrawings Pro for iPad has enough of the core eDrawings Professional functions to immediately make this a useful tool to those of us that need to quickly communicate design intent, information about model interiors, redlines and other detailed information. It is still very inexpensive when compared to other applications that perform similar tasks on native SolidWorks and eDrawings files.

eDrawings Pro for iPad is available as of August 31, 2012 from the Apple App Store. Please find and install this app through App Store from your iPad device.

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