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So long, Onshape Beta!

After a highly successful testing period, which included 400,000 hours of customer usage in more than 150 countries, we are today ending Onshape’s beta test and moving to a full commercial release.

Back in March, when Onshape Beta was released to the public, I posed this question: “Ever spend a long time working on a new product and can’t wait to share it with the world?”

Sharing something is one thing; Having it be enthusiastically received and validated through real customer usage is quite another. A wide range of companies are already designing real products in Onshape, helping their design teams be more creative and work faster.

We founded Onshape with an ambitious vision, to solve many of the big problems we saw users having with traditional CAD through the application of cloud, web and mobile technology. We knew this would require us to build a whole new CAD system from the ground up.

We envisioned a professional 3D CAD system to run in a web browser and on mobile phones and tablets. We also sought to build-in true simultaneous editing, branching with intelligent merging, version control, and a complete edit history of all activity. And we sought to build all this so it could scale to massive numbers of CAD users around the world, fast, securely and reliably. The goal of our beta test was to validate that our vision could be turned into a reality.

It was not your typical CAD beta. Here are a few results since Onshape Beta began in March 2015:

  • 400,000 hours of usage by over 10,000 users in over 150 countries – This is far beyond the level of usage we have ever seen in previous CAD beta tests.
  • 4,000,000 modeling features created – That’s a lot of extrudes, fillets, shells, etc.
  • 390,000 CAD files Imported/Exported
  • 325,000 STL Files Created For 3D Printing
  • High Mobile CAD Usage – Nobody knew how much CAD would be done on phones and tablets because nobody had ever built CAD on phones and tablets. 1 in 6 Onshape sessions were on a phone or tablet. And not just viewing – but also full CAD editing and version control.
  • A Strong Community – Enthusiastic Onshape Beta users have already started local user groups worldwide. Over 1,000 users have attended in-person Onshape meetups. Over 200 schools and universities have started using Onshape.
  • More than 125 New Enhancements – We released 14 major product updates, adding over 125 features and improvements. Compare this to the once-a-year upgrades from traditional desktop-installed CAD. Onshape users enjoy automatic upgrades every few weeks, just by refreshing their browsers. Everyone is always on the latest version.
  • A New Standard In CAD Reliability – During beta Onshape achieved over 99.9% uptime. And Onshape users experienced virtually zero crashes and lost work. Onshape’s unique full-cloud architecture has virtually eliminated the concept of CAD crashes and lost work that have burdened CAD users for years.
  • Customers Designing Great Products With Better ResultsBy far the most important and gratifying achievement of Onshape’s beta program has been customers building real products in Onshape. Customers consistently reported important benefits of Onshape versus traditional CAD, most notably working faster, innovating more, and saving money on software and hardware. They also reported having more fun – no installs, no checkout, no PDM, and no file copies.

I want to say thank you very much to our thousands of beta users. You put your time and passion into using Onshape and gave us honest feedback and creative ideas that guided us in adding important enhancements. You are truly helping us build full-cloud CAD. Your priorities and needs will continue to guide us as we decide where to go next.

I also want to also thank our amazing Onshape development team, led by Onshape founder and Vice President of Research and Development Dave Corcoran. Dave has done a spectacular job assembling and leading our R&D team to produce a product that many people thought impossible to build.

We are very proud of what we have built so far to complete our beta and reach our commercial launch, but we have a much broader vision for the future of Onshape. Rest assured that we will continue to work hard every day to to improve and expand Onshape to make it an even better tool for our users.