Product Updates

Introducing: A reimagined Freehand (for those who really miss their whiteboard)

4 min read
Kacy Boone
  •  May 12, 2020
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Getting a diverse group of designers, engineers, and business leaders together to ideate early in a project is the special sauce of industry-changing teams. This opportunity for alignment not only prevents miscommunications and delays later on, but may also lead to a new perspective or out-of-the-box solution that would have been otherwise missed.

But now that so many of us are working remotely, we’ve seen teams search for an online tool that allows them to replicate this inclusive, visual collaboration. Many have turned to Freehand, our real-time digital whiteboard, to connect—resulting in a dramatic increase in the number of customers using Freehand.

We built Freehand with the idea that sharing your ideas should be as easy as whiteboarding IRL. No matter your role or background, you should be able to communicate freely. And we’ve seen this in action as folks from across various companies use it to facilitate brainstorms, host happy hours, conduct technical interviews, run retrospectives, and even play games during off-hours.

In response to this skyrocketing usage, we’re making it even easier for everyone to use Freehand. Today, we’re excited to release sticky notes and a bundle of drawing improvements to help you express your ideas faster. If you already have an InVision account (or if your team does), the new Freehand is available to you now! Simply log in to your InVision account and click the “+” to get started. If you don’t have an InVision account yet, you can sign up here.

Starting with the basics: Easier and faster drawing

When you’re trying to move as fast as your free-flowing thoughts, it’s the little things that can go a long way. We took your feedback and made it easier to draw and write in Freehand, along with a suite of improvements like text-wrapping, shape selection, color changing, and alignment. Here’s a recap:

Wrap text by dragging the text box from left to right with the pointer tool

Select either a square, circle, or line for cleaner drawings

Align drawings by selecting each object all at once, then choosing one of the alignment options at the top

Make changes to the color of what you’ve already drawn, choose opacity for the fill and outline of your shapes

 

New this week: A sticky note for your thoughts

Your favorite whiteboard companion is going digital with sticky notes now available in Freehand. Create a sticky note (in your preferred color), quickly add some text, and arrange it anywhere on your freehand. You can also take any pre-written text and make it into a sticky note after the fact. Use this feature to jot down tasks for sprint planning, create an affinity map, or add feedback to your project.

Bonus: Use freehand.new to create on the fly

No need to click, click, click to get a new Freehand up and running. Now, just type “freehand.new” into your browser and a brand new freehand will be created for you to get started on.

These Freehand updates are just one more example of how InVision is creating a home for the whole team to create and build together. We hope these updates help with creative collaboration as teams around the world learn how to work remotely. And who knows, maybe your physical whiteboard will even become a thing of the past.

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