What’s new in Figma: October 2021

Sula Yang
Marketing at Figma

Collaboration isn’t one-size-fits-all. Sometimes it’s multiplayer. Other times, it requires more independent work before bringing in other collaborators. But no matter how your team works together, the best collaborative moments are a balance of structure and serendipity. This month, we released powerful, new collaboration capabilities to help automate and simplify work, while creating space to connect with your team along the way. Read on to learn more about these updates:

Work better together in FigJam

Earlier this month, we brought our open platform to FigJam, introducing new capabilities with the help of our vibrant developer community:

Customize your space with widgets

Customize how you collaborate with widgets—just click and drop them into a file. Add your selfies to the board using Photo Booth, start the day seeing how everyone is feeling using Alignment Scale, or map out your team structure with Org Chart.

Speed up your workflow with plugins

While widgets are made for collaboration, plugins help you express and synthesize your ideas faster. Install Tour Guide to turn any jam board into a slide show presentation, try Color Picker for even more color options for your stickies and shapes, or use Unsplash to access beautiful images.

Explore more from the toolbar

You can now discover all plugins and widgets directly from the toolbar in your FigJam file, in addition to:

  • FigJam templates: Get jamming quickly using existing templates. They are formatted for a range of needs, from brainstorms to workshops to research.
  • Code blocks and new shapes: Developers can also jam together and bring their work onto FigJam using code blocks and advanced diagrams.

To cap it off, we wanted to make it easier for you to jam with anyone, anywhere. With Open sessions, you can invite visitors to join a FigJam file without having to create an account.

Bring designs to life with interactive components

Designing visuals is already challenging, so it’s tempting to skip the prototyping stage. But without prototyping, you’re unable to fully preview or troubleshoot your designs. This week, we launched interactive components and a handful of smaller improvements to make it easier for teams to create, edit, and share interactive ideas.

Interactive components

Interactive components allow you to create reusable interactive elements for your designs, helping you to spend less time prototyping and more time experimenting and iterating with your team.

Hiding inherited interactions

We are making prototypes easier to understand at first glance by hiding interactions “inherited” from main components on instances. Complex prototypes will remain legible for quicker editing and smoother handoff.

More prototyping updates

We have launched a number of other improvements to provide better visibility and navigation to prototyping:

  • Prototype tab shortcut: Use Shift + E to toggle between the design and prototype tabs.
  • Interactions visible for everyone: See and explore interactions on the canvas.
  • Disable keyboard navigation in viewer: Disable default keyboard navigation when viewing prototypes for more realistic user testing.
  • Copy/paste interactions: Copy and paste prototype interactions to further reduce repetitive work.

Explore and design at scale

At Figma, we take pride in helping teams of all sizes create and maintain design systems. While we recognize the importance of design consistency, we know it’s equally important to encourage new ideas.

Branching makes it possible for designers to collaborate on the same file without literally being in the same file. Teams can create temporary duplicate files (branches) in which to design freely, before deciding whether or not to merge the creations to the main file.

Learn more about branching, which is available to all those on a Figma Organization plan.

For even more detailed improvements, make sure to check out the release notes. And if you have any other feature requests, we’d love to hear them! Feel free to share with us on Twitter or in the Figma Support Forum.