Figma AI: A Brand New Free Weapon in Design Battles

Figma AI

In the last Figma Config 2024 event, the biggest highlight was Figma AI. The company introduced its AI-powered tools as a suite of capabilities designed to revolutionize workflows and enhance creativity. 

The best part of this introduction is that Figma AI is right now free for all users. These tools promise to automate tedious tasks, expedite project timelines, and unlock new levels of design innovation. 

This introduction explores how Figma AI’s free tools are reshaping the design landscape. As a result, it creates a sense of both opportunities and challenges as designers navigate the advancement of AI integration in their creative processes.

What is Figma AI?

Figma AI is a set of AI-powered tools that aims to enhance design efficiency and creativity. It helps designers by automating tasks like visual search, content generation, and translating designs. 

This tool makes things easier like removing backgrounds and summarizing stickies. These features are powered by third-party AI models. Here, they prioritize security through encryption and limited data access.

From AI tools that elevate professional designers to developer tools that create stronger connections between design and code, Figma wants to make it possible for teams to go from idea to product—all in one place.

Dylan Field, Figma co-founder and chief executive

Currently in beta and free, Figma plans to introduce usage limits and pricing later. Administrators have control over AI feature access and content training settings, ensuring transparency and user autonomy.

Figma plans further enhancements by developing models that better align with its unique design tools and patterns, prioritizing user security and creative workflow efficiency.

Things We Get in Figma AI

Certainly, Figma’s new AI version is still not completely developed. Indeed, what they are offering has suffused already. It comes with lots of exciting features that can encourage a new generation to build a career in design. However, here are some of the major features of Figma AI:

Features of Figma AI

Visual Search Option

It lets users visually search for specific design elements within their projects. This feature helps designers quickly locate and reuse components. Also, it ensures consistency across designs.

Automatic Task Automation

Figma AI automates repetitive tasks within the design process, like renaming layers, organizing elements based on predefined rules, or formatting components. This approach simply saves time and reduces manual effort. As a consequence, designers can focus on creative aspects.

Asset Search Function

This tool lets users search for and find various assets like icons, illustrations, or images across multiple projects. It simply streamlines asset management and facilitates efficient asset reuse.

Prototype Creation

Transforming static designs into interactive prototypes is another advancement we are blessed with. This feature is invaluable for UX/UI designers like us as it lets us simulate user interactions and test functionality before final implementation.

Content Generation and Translation

This is the most expected and basic feature of Figma AI. It generates content automatically, like text for descriptions or placeholder content. It also includes translation capabilities to create multilingual designs and collaborate globally.

Quick Background Removal Function

This AI will automatically remove backgrounds from images to make it easier to integrate images into designs. For that, it doesn’t even need any external editing tools. This system enhances flexibility and speeds up the design iteration process.

Sticky Note Summarization

It also summarizes and organizes content from collaborative FigJam sessions to help teams distill ideas and decisions into actionable insights. Eventually, it improves communication and project management within collaborative design sessions.

These are not all for sure. Figma AI also brings features like AI model integration, Data privacy, and easy access control functions. All these features simply enhance design efficiency, creativity, and collaboration while prioritizing user privacy and security in the design process.

Figma AI: Is This A Threat or Blessing?

As Figma introduces its AI-powered features, the debate over their impact on job security intensifies. 

On one hand, tools like automatic task automation and content generation promise to streamline workflows, boost productivity, and enhance creativity.  These additional benefits suggest a blessing for designers, enabling them to focus on high-level tasks while AI handles repetitive chores.

However, concerns arise regarding job security. Automating tasks traditionally performed by designers raises questions about the future demand for human creativity and expertise. The reliance on AI could potentially reduce the need for certain design roles, impacting employment stability in the industry.

Figma AI: Is This A Threat or Blessing?

Dylan Field, CEO and co-founder of Figma, champions AI as a catalyst for expanding creativity and accessibility in design. He envisions Figma AI not as a threat to designers’ roles, but as a tool to augment their capabilities. According to CNBC,

What we care about is making sure we’re not just sprinkling AI fairy dust on top but rather really baking AI functionality into the product in order to make a designer’s life better.

Dylan Field, CEO and co-founder of Figma

Ultimately, while Figma AI offers undeniable advantages in efficiency and functionality, its long-term implications for designer job security remain a critical consideration amidst the evolving landscape of automation.

Financial Impact of Figma AI on Designers and Agencies

The introduction of Figma’s AI features must promise a significant financial impact on designers and agencies. We are expecting both opportunities and challenges. Here are our takes on this fact:

Financial Impact on Designers and Agencies

Skilled Designers Have Chances for An Increased Revenue

Figma’s AI tools aim to automate repetitive tasks and streamline workflows. It is expected to boost designer productivity by up to 60% and developer efficiency by 30%, as noted in Figma

This efficiency gain lets designers and agencies handle more projects concurrently or expedite project timelines. As a result, they can increase revenue potential through increased throughput.

Designers Can Offer More Services

Features like visual search, content generation, and rapid prototyping will extend the capabilities of designers and agencies. This versatility enables them to offer broader aspects of services and tackle multiple project complexities. 

The ability to swiftly generate design concepts from textual input proves particularly advantageous for pitching ideas to clients. This approach will enhance competitiveness and client satisfaction.

Potential Threat to Certain Design Work

While Figma emphasizes AI as a complement to human creativity, concerns exist regarding the potential displacement of certain design tasks by AI-generated content. Particularly for routine or templated designs, there’s a risk of downward pressure on pricing or reduced demand over time. 

Those who always follow a particular structure can suffer in this case. Agencies and designers need to adapt by focusing on higher-value, creative tasks that utilize human ingenuity alongside AI capabilities.

Adaptation and Strategic Planning Can Be the Road to Success

If we are not willing to adapt or embrace the changes, we have to consider Figma AI as a treat. How about utilizing this tool for better success?

It’s possible. Indeed, this AI tool is developed for that purpose. 

To maximize the benefits of Figma’s AI features, designers and agencies need to adapt their service offerings and pricing models strategically. They should reposition themselves as providers of high-value, bespoke design solutions that integrate AI tools to enhance creativity and efficiency. 

Additionally, continuous innovation and upskilling in AI utilization will be crucial to maintaining a competitive advantage and navigating shifts in market dynamics.

End Note

For sure, Figma AI’s introduction as a free arsenal in design battles signifies a revolutionary shift towards enhanced efficiency and expanded creative possibilities. Even though these AI tools promise to increase productivity for designers and agencies, they also pose challenges around potential job displacement and evolving market demands. 

The solution lies in how well you plan to utilize AI. You will win if you can use it to enhance creativity, adjust service offerings strategically, and consistently innovate to stay competitive, instead of replacing them with the tool.

Abdullah Al Noman
Chief Operating Officer
With seven years in design, he transformed Toffee at Banglalink into a platform loved by 10 million Bangladeshi users, expertly merging user feedback with design expertise. He's collaborated with top-tier brands including Autogrill, Laderach, The Asia Foundation, and Robi. As a co-founder of Design Monks, he crafts experiences that resonate deeply, also hosting the insightful 'Design Chit Chat' podcast. His early mentorship through Bangladesh's a2i Programme has made him a pillar in nurturing new UX design talent.