Onshape is a truly versatile and flexible product design platform – and I mean platform – that solves the problems of discrete C:/ file management and PDM.

With built-in tools that trounce traditional product data management (PDM) software, along with cloud-native rendering and simulation that won’t burn a hole through your desk or wallet, Onshape is a streamlined environment that will take any design from idea to production.

Already, 3 million users are leveraging the power of Onshape. Are you ready to join? 

We offer several different plans depending on your needs: 

In all four plans, the CAD and collaboration tools are identical – it’s the data management and analytics tools that are the main differentiators. Each level has its own set of features, including different levels of intellectual property (IP) ownership.

Let’s go through each plan to outline the main differences. 

Differences in Onshape Subscriptions

To set the stage, it’s important to know why Onshape plans are different than other CAD software. 

Onshape is cloud-native. And cloud-native platforms do it differently. Because of Onshape’s cloud architecture, the platform embraces horizontal scaling, allowing for the division of an application into smaller independent parts.

Compared to similar tools, Onshape works much like Google Workspace. You can have your own Gmail account yourself or you can have a Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) account for your business. This concept doesn’t yet exist in CAD beyond Onshape but is almost always the way a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) program works.

And like Google, Onshape offers different subscription tiers depending on the tools and functions needed by the user.

Onshape Free Plan vs. Paid Plans

Onshape Free is available to the hobbyist and maker communities free of charge for non-commercial use. It is ideal for personal and open-source projects.

Onshape Free includes:

  • Free professional-grade 3D CAD;

  • Immediate access after signing up;

  • Can be used on any device with access to a browser; and

  • Onshape Learning Center resources at your fingertips.

Note: All Onshape Documents created in Onshape Free are publicly accessible online.

Onshape Free costs nothing. 

icons of devices

Onshape Standard vs. Free

Onshape Standard is the entry-level subscription level of Onshape that allows users to create and edit 3D models, and collaborate with others. 

This plan includes everything from Onshape Free, plus:

  • Data Ownership: All data created or uploaded to Onshape Standard is private – in contrast to Onshape Free, which keeps data public. With Onshape Standard, the user retains complete ownership of their intellectual property, including any designs or models created. 

  • Private Design Space: Users can control who can access their designs.

  • Basic Data Management Tools: Users have access to versions and history, branching and merging, and the ability to organize data by teams, labels, and folders.

Onshape Standard costs $1,500 per user, per year.

Exploring design changes in Onshape does not result in multiple copies of files.

Onshape Professional vs. Standard

Onshape Professional is our most popular plan for teams and individuals who need integrated release management and company-wide controls. 

Onshape Professional includes a number of company-wide administration tools to help you manage multiple users, control access to data across the organization, and easily define company standards and procedures. These tools also provide better protection for your company’s intellectual property and simplify the sharing of design data with your colleagues. Plus, this subscription includes unlimited private storage.

This plan includes everything from Onshape Standard, plus:

  • Formal Release Management: Manages your formal product release process. Create and submit release candidates for individual items or entire projects with custom revision schemes and part numbers.

  • Simulation: Examine meaningful structural analysis results such as stress, displacement, and factors of safety all within the design environment.

  • PCB Studio: Connect your ECAD data with Onshape’s MCAD design environment.

  • Custom Properties & Metadata: Creates and enforces company-wide custom properties.

  • Company-Level Admin Tools: Manage users, teams, workflows, and other company-wide settings.

  • Consolidated Billing: Manage billing for your entire company from one account.

  • Unlimited Free Viewer Licenses: Allow anyone within your organization to view, comment, or interact with CAD data you choose to share with them

Onshape Professional costs $2,500 per user, per year. However, Onshape is launching the Discovery Program – an opportunity for qualified users to try out Onshape Professional at no cost for up to six months.

The Onshape
Discovery Program

Learn how qualified CAD professionals
can get Onshape Professional
for up to 6 months – at no cost!

Onshape Enterprise vs. Onshape Professional

Onshape Enterprise is all about visibility: How can you measure success – or even gather baseline information – without data? 

Organizations that are interested in leveraging data-driven insights to guide business decisions while enjoying advanced security and highly customized release management tools are candidates for Onshape Enterprise.

The Enterprise offering has all the options from Onshape Professional, plus:

  • Onshape-Arena Connection: Connect CAD, PDM, and PLM and synchronize engineers, manufacturers, and suppliers throughout the entire product management process.

The Onshape-Arena Connection helps you find information with just a few clicks.

  • Light Users: Provides flexibility for organizations to share and gather feedback on up-to-date product designs with extended team members or partners who typically don’t use or need CAD for their own work, i.e., management, suppliers, manufacturers, or a customer.

  • End-to-End Design Process Visibility: Social media-style activity feed provides an easy way to track progress, along with the action item message center for task management.

  • Role-Based Access Control: Creates one or more roles or job functions and assigns user access to projects by role.

  • Project-Specific Workflow Settings: Creates custom permission schemes and designates access permissions for each project.

  • Real-time Analytics & Dashboards: Generates graphical real-time dashboards with detailed overviews of your entire design process.

  • Project-Based Activity, Reporting & Audit Trails: Delivers detailed insights into project and user activity with comprehensive reports and audit trails.

  • Centralized Intellectual Property Control & Visibility: Enforces company ownership of design documents and manages and tracks user access in real time.

  • Advanced Provisioning & Security Settings: Manages users, global permissions, and security settings such as two-factor authentication (2FA).

  • SSO Integration Options: Connect Onshape to your other important business tools, e.g., Okta, Google, LDAP, Azure.

  • Custom Domain: yourcompanyname.onshape.com instead of cad.onshape.com.

  • Enterprise-Level Customer Support: A dedicated point person and support meetings are scheduled regularly or as needed.

The Onshape Startup Program

Onshape Senior Vice President & General Manager David Katzman announces the new Startup Program during Onshape Live ’23.

Onshape also launched a Startup Program for burgeoning companies. The program offers Onshape Professional licenses to qualifying startups and entrepreneurs at no cost. Contact us for more information and to apply to the program!

Get Started Today

Head to our sign-up page to choose the right CAD plan for you and your business.