RelativeWave Gets Acquired By Google And Starts Giving Its $80 App Design Tool Away For Free

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RelativeWave, creators of an $80 “interaction design and prototyping” Mac app called Form, has been acquired by Google. As a result, Form is now free.

In case you’ve never used it, Form is a visual editor meant to help designers/developers make visually-functional prototypes of apps without writing code.

Form isn’t an app maker. That is, you don’t end up with an app that’ll do much on its own, or that you can distribute. Instead, you’ll get a rough prototype — a feel for whether or not a potential design (and many of its nuances, like the specifics of how an animation flows) are heading in the right direction. If doodling on a napkin is a 1 and actually coding the app is a 10, building a prototype with Form is somewhere around a 6.

Form is actually two apps: one that runs on OS X, and one that runs on an iOS device. You design your prototype in the OS X app’s visual editor, and those changes are instantly reflected in the pseudo-app running on the device without the need to recompile anything.

At launch, Form was $150. In September of this year, they dropped the price down to $80.

With today’s news of the team joining Google, however, Form goes free. You can find it on the Mac app store here. In a somewhat irregular (but appreciated) move, the company says they’ll be refunding those who previously purchased the app.

Details of the acquisition weren’t disclosed (we’re digging, as usual), but it doesn’t seem like a classic “Hire the team, kill the product” situation. RelativeWave says they’ll continue to work on Form at Google — presumably working on an Android version, as Form is currently iOS only.

Still not sure what Form is? We’ve embedded an intro video below. It’s a bit long, but it should start to make sense within a few minutes.