File Sharing/Publishing

IMSI/Design Debuts First 3D DWG Viewer for iPhone

11 Jul, 2011 By: Cadalyst Staff

Engineers and architects alike can mobilize their designs with the free TurboViewer app, which was built from the ground up for the iOS platform.

CAD software developer IMSI/Design, the maker of TurboCAD, recently announced that its TurboViewer application — released in June for the iPad — is now available for the iPhone. The free app is the first native DWG viewer that supports both 2D and 3D CAD DWG files for the iOS platform.

TurboViewer supports both 2D (left) and 3D (center) files. Users can zoom and rotate with multitouch gestures, or can tap the orange Views button to select from a list of viewing angles (right).

"We built TurboViewer from the ground up for iPad and iPhone," said Royal Farros, chairman and CEO of IMSI/Design. "We think architects, engineers, and designers are going to love having their plans in the palms of their hands."

IMSI/Design COO Bob Mayer explained to Cadalyst that several factors differentiate his company's new release from other mobile tools already on the market. "Currently, we are the only app that can view and navigate 3D DWG files natively on the iOS platform, and Android support is coming soon. AutoCAD WS, for example, only handles 2D.

"We are the only viewer that currently can read and restore AutoCAD named/saved views. [In addition,] our viewing technology is based upon OpenGL, so performance is very much optimized," Mayer continued. "We've created a mobile app from the ground up, trying to take advantage of the form factors of the iPad — we haven't tried to make a full-featured CAD application and port it into a mobile app."

Three different views of a reductor assembly design, all selected using the Views button.

TurboViewer supports AutoCAD linetypes, automatically senses whether a drawing is 2D or 3D and sets the appropriate multitouch navigation mode, and doesn't require an Internet connection for remote field work. Users can send DWG and DXF files via e-mail attachments; view DWG and DXF files from the web, FTP, Dropbox, or WebDAV; navigate a full-screen preview while a drawing is loading; and cancel a large file load.

Although all types of designers can use the app, it was developed with AEC professionals in mind. Mayer explained, "While TurboViewer can be used to view any DWG/DXF files for AEC and otherwise, it is designed for mobility using a multitouch interface and tablet form factor, which fits well with the AEC workflow in regards to off-site work, where building walkthroughs or fieldwork are required. Future apps from our TurboApp product line will [cater] even more to AEC mobility requirements [with] advanced tools and extended capabilities."

Users can change the background color for better drawing contrast and clearer viewing.

IMSI/Design plans to release a Pro version of TurboViewer later this summer. "We actually share some details of Pro features in the '?' or Information button in the [current release] — specifically that we will be supporting layers, hidden line, and shaded views. We also plan multilingual support," said Mayer.

TurboViewer is available from the App Store on iPhone, or at

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