Created by Ekaterina Fedotova
So, what makes an application considered the best? They can be a powerful option with a range of features, availability, flexibility, popularity, or even free. Those kinds of aspects are also applied to wireframe tools for UI/UX designers in the market. Some of the tools are considerably costly with premium features and abilities.
But does it mean free wireframe tools are not good? No, many markets push quality for the new UI/UX developers and designers out there. And some of them are worth a try. In this article, you will find at least six of the best options you can use for your wireframe work. They are free, but with some conditions to consider. Here is your list:
1. Wireframe cc
The first free tool that you might hear about quite a lot is Wireframe CC. It is on the popular side since the UI/UX is an online and web-based application. So, designers can access it and do not have to spend any penny on it. Not only that, the idea of an online application for wireframe tools makes it easier to access. Thus, it gives extra points for the availability aspect.
But is it good? If you want to compare with the Axure RP designers or paid tools, indeed, this option is a little bit lacking. However, among those superabundant options out there, the free application is not bad. It captures the simplistic and minimalistic touch that helps the UI/UX designers easier to navigate.
At a glance, it is fit for the beginner to advance designers' free tools that highlight user experience. You can see it from the simple interface that allows designers to make UI/UX wireframe sketches quickly. At some point, the application takes it further by reducing the icons and toolbars that appear like a typical drawing app. Of course, it is a good point for Wireframe CC.
The super intuitive free wireframe tools for designers are amazing. It is efficient, quick, and simple. It also resembles a drawing application with its pencil and paper icons. Not only that, the free application makes it easier to move around with your mouse and make more action. You can make a blank canvas and add one of nine UI/UX wireframe options on the toolbar.
How to use it and how quick it is?
Since the wireframe tools highlight its fast paces process, how fast is it? Surprisingly, the low-fidelity web-based UI/UX tools can take less than 10 minutes to finish. No joke, it is real as long as you have a clear plan in hand. It has a highly intuitive multipurpose function, predetermined landscape, and many more. So, let's get on how UI/UX designers use it.
First, you can simply drag and use your mouse to make any kind of UI/UX wireframe. It does not need complex actions, especially with its drawing focus. So, you can start with sketching using pen or pencil tools. After that, you can add functions or actions to what you draw. There is no limitation or law. But it does take time to understand the sequence.
After that, you also got three design patterns for your UI/UX work. As a designer, it can save you a lot of time. Even professional designers can take this option to shave their planning time. And it is one of the Free wireframe tools that give you options, such as vertical, landscape mode, to web or app.
It is also worth mentioning that it uses web-based low-fidelity free tools and has a quick sharing option. You can copy and share the URL. But again, remember that the premise is to give designers a simple and basic interaction or function. So, wireframe cc is basic and kind of limited, which is perfect for beginner designers in UI/UX.
Created by Lyubov Sidorova
2. Fliud UI
It is not fluid but Fliud UI. The unique name will appeal to you as one of the many free wireframe tools with web-based concepts. So, what makes it different from the previous option? If you are a designer that wants a high-fidelity function with better function and features and focuses on mobile app UI/UX patterns, this is your pick.
However, it is not 100% free. UI/UX designers have to pay at least $8.25 per month for an individual wireframe subscription. For more features and access, you can pick the pro or team options that cost about $19 to $41.6 per month. Even though it is not free, it is worth it. The good things about this wireframe app, among other tools, are its unique function.
Fluid wireframe tools allow you to make animations and gestures for your work. Thus, you can make more amazing UI/UX work. At some point, you can also call it a professional UI/UX designers tools, especially for high-fidelity wireframe plans. It can give you more than just simple or basic functions. That is why many people love to use it for unique tools and features.
The Unique UI/UX Wireframe Tools Offered By Fliud UI.
Since the web-based wireframe tools offer unique items, you can highlight at least four aspects that make it better. The first thing that you can enjoy is the huge customizable icons and widgets. There are around 2000 options that UI/UX designers can apply for the wireframe project. And you can use them freely.
You can simply drag and drop the item to complete the wireframe design. There are also 16 built-in iOS, wireframe libraries, and material designs. So, designers got a range of tools to apply in these not-so-free apps for UI/UX designers. That is one of the reasons why this app is a good alternative for your work. Some other tools and features also make it better.
Fliud allows designers to use export for the entire wireframe view. So, you can use it as a flow UI/UX document presentation. There is also a chance to use the free plan or pre-made template layout from the wireframe tools. So, you got extra tools to make unique gestures or transition between pages. And you can use it for the team since the UI gives you a feature to do so.
Created by Karina L.
3. Balsamiq mockups
If you want something completely free, even though it is just for trial, try Balsamiq Mockup. It is not a bad option for one of many free wireframe tools for designers that want quick work. Why so? Because the application that you have does pay attention to the quick wireframe element building and designing. Thus, you can do many things in this one.
However, since the free trial is a limitation, UI/UX designers might want to put some cash for advanced functions and features. The free tool trial is only 30 days, and you can buy the pro version for $89. But again, remember that it is a low fidelity option. So, your option might not be as good as those UI/UX with a big reputation.
However, the Balsamiq mockup has been one of many favorite wireframe tools for UI/UX designers. It was made by a software engineer. Thus, the function highlights quick and fast planning. But, the biggest question is how quickly can you make a wireframe? At least the speed can take around 5-10 minutes. And the UI/UX app tools run in windows, mac, and web-based.
What Makes Balsamiq Mockups Work Fast
One of the reasons the app gives designers quick work is the available samples. When you search on the official page, you can find plenty of sketch skin samples, wireframe tools, skins, desktop app models, websites, mobile apps, and many more. It can give a quick start for UI/UX designers. So, they don't need to make UI/UX from scratch.
Among other tools, the wireframe app also has a unique hand drawing style. It adds a fun touch while not altering its mechanical function. So, it makes the wireframe design look more interesting. For more, it is beginner-friendly. You will find yourself feeling like working on the whiteboard with its unique sketch design.
Another thing that makes these tools better despite being free is the drag and drop feature. You can add elements such as a list, buttons, cards, or anything. This pro-built widget will help UI/UX designers to make clear work easily. And don't forget about the wholesome UI elements library that makes your wireframe work quicker.
Again, remember that it is one of many free wireframe tools. So, it won't work for a huge UI/UX prototyping and complicated work. In other words, it only serves as a quick and rough application that helps you build wireframes, not any prototypes. Therefore, be mindful and consider this aspect before buying it.
Created by Katsiaryna Charnukha
4. Mockplus cloud
When you are going to make a complicated wireframe or UI/UX prototype, one of the tools to consider is Mockplus Cloud. It is another famous option among UI/UX designers, and it does offer a range of options. It also works on many platforms, such as iOS, Android, Windows, or Mac. And good god, the basic free package is worth a try.
But the free option only gives you limited projects. It is only available for three team members, five prototypes, and projects. To get more access, you will need to spend at least $9 per month. That is a reasonable price for tools that give you almost anything, including collaborative wireframe tools that work with other developers or designers.
4 Things That Make The App Solid
The Mockplus cloud takes the same route as many other free wireframe tools feature, the simple drag and drop design. It does make UI/UX designers work faster and easier since they can interact, make commands, add options, demonstrate the blueprint, and improve their UI/UX work. It makes Mockplus user-friendly.
Not only that, but since it uses the cloud, the program works with other design application tools. Some of them are PS, Sketch, or XD. It helps designers try to create high-fidelity prototypes with tons of details. This integration also includes special plugin tools. So, you can make it work in many ways just with a few clicks.
The community part of Mockplus is also a great consideration. You can use online collaboration, make comments, and share projects in real-time. To make it even better, the free tools also give handoff design features. It allows UI/UX designers to share their designs with other people, developers, and many more without breaking the spec information or asset.
That makes it one of the most famous free wireframe tools that many UI/UX designers can use, especially for collaborative work. The overall UI and features are also pretty vast for compelling design. Thus, it is a great option if you want to make a connection with something that highlights teamwork.
Created by Svetlana Zheleykina
If you are looking for the simpler version of the Mockplus Cloud, you can check this option. The two options share the same principles but with a different approach. In this case, the target is UI/UX designers looking for quick, smart, and easy wireframe tools. Thus, it mainly focuses on working with low fidelity design.
While it mainly focuses on low fidelity, the features and application can give you the same design quality as the Cloud version. It also works for Android, iOS, Windows, or Mac. But, one of the biggest differences is the price. The basic one is free, but the pro version is around 30 dollars per month.
The payment is higher than the cloud because you got almost everything that the cloud could not. It can be a free option for beginner UI/UX designers that want to learn further. At the same time, it covers a range of options that highlight the quick and fast design. So, it is a great wireframe tool that you can consider.
The main features you can get from Mockplus
Again, the tools and the features inside this app are the perfect solutions for faster interaction design. You can visualize almost everything with the free app, and most of them do not need parameters, coding, or details. You can use drag and drop to add a function or something in your wireframe. That is why it is a friendly option for new UI/UX designers.
To make it even better, you got more than 3000 SVG icons, 200 components, demos, and templates. Thus, you can access and get a quick start. Another good point is the unique UI/UX designer's style and worksheet. You can use the repeater that allows the designers to make alterations. The Format painter helps copy-paste style, and the mind map is the easy to complete template.
Created by Anna Voronina
6. Pencil project
Another free for is the pencil project app. This is one of many free wireframe tools that you can get for the Linux platform, which is quite rare. Other than that, you can use it on Windows or Mac. Again, since it is free, you have to use it for low fidelity work. But, it is enough to make it one of the UI/UX designer's favorites.
The unique point of this app is how it is available as Firefox Add-on. So, you can use it online. However, it also works as a standalone application. Just as the name says, the options and features you got are pretty basic and easy to understand. If you tend to work with hand drawing or sketching, Pencil Project will be one of those best tools.
What makes it on par with others' options?
Many people disregard and underestimate the sense of free application. However, the free Pencil and project prove it false. You got almost all of the things you need in this app. Starting from the wireframe connector feature, which links all of the pictures you import and make them work with your flow chart. A ground-breaking option for a free and well-known tool.
The application also uses the project as a way to work on UI/UX blueprint. It means that you can do your project by starting from scratch or joining an existing project to save your time. Again, it will help UI/UX designers to work faster. But, the idea of working fast also comes in how the app supports diagram creation.
It means that wireframe tools allow designers to add links among every graphic element. It is undeniable that the features will help a lot in the later stage of UI/UX building. It will mainly help them learn how to make website models and operation programs before finalization. That app functions help cover up some flaws from this free app.
The disadvantages mostly appear from the standalone free app. While it does show some solid features, it also has limitations. In this case, you might have to face some problems with XulRunner or files used in Ubuntu (Linux) and Firefox. It also does not support high fidelity. So UI/UX designers cannot use it for prototyping.
Created by Tim Raish
Created by Eva Kurganskaya
Created by Darina Enkeeva
So, those are some free tools that you can use for wireframe design. Some of them do come with limited access. However, the overall quality, basic functions, connection, speed, and features are there. The point is that, as long as the UI/UX designers have a solid design in hand, you can always create professional-looking work with free wireframe tools. Enjoy!