The AutoCAD WS mobile app enables you to view and work with DWG files directly on any Android phone or tablet running Android 2.1 or higher. This free* mobile app can be downloaded from the Android Market.
This tutorial provides a brief overview of the things you will be able to do with the AutoCAD WS mobile app.
Sign in to AutoCAD WS
Once you’ve downloaded and installed the mobile app, you can sign in to your AutoCAD WS account from your device by using your AutoCAD WS or existing Autodesk credentials. If you don’t have an AutoCAD WS account, the mobile app lets you create one.
Please note that you will need to be connected to the internet the first time you open the app.
Open a Drawing
Upon signing in to AutoCAD WS from your Android device, you will see the Drawings window. This window contains the list of drawings and folders that you have uploaded or created. There are a number of ways to upload drawings to your account:
- Using the AutoCAD WS web app through your computer’s browser at www.autocadws.com
- Using AutoCAD 2010 or AutoCAD 2011 once you have downloaded and installed the AutoCAD-WS plug-in
- Using AutoCAD 2012 or AutoCAD for Mac
- Receiving the drawings as an attachent to your Android device’s email client and opening themwhile connected to the internet
See the Getting Started tutorial to learn more.
Tap to open a drawing or to view the contents of a folder. When you open a drawing, you can view, edit and collaborate on the drawing from your device.
Editing a Drawing
The mobile Editor contains a number of toolbars that enable you to edit and markup AutoCAD drawings. You can add basic shapes or make text annotations—perfect for small touch-ups in the field or on the road. Access each toolbars by tapping its icon on the command ribbon found on the bottom of your device’s screen.
Navigation Tips: Using the device’s touch interface, you can pan, zoom, edit, and annotate AutoCAD drawings in the mobile Editor. To pan the drawing, swipe in the direction of your choice. To zoom in and out, pinch the area you’d like to view. Tap objects to select, then move, rotate, or scale. To select multiple objects, turn on multi-selection and then make a long tap and drag your finger to create a rectangle that will select all objects intersecting it. To stop multi-selection, toggle the multi-selection button on the bottom ribbon off.
The Commands Ribbon. Take a moment to familiarize yourself with the Editor’s command ribbon, and the toolbars associated with each icon on the ribbon:
- Draw Tools. Show the Draw toolbar which lets you add new objects to the drawing.
- Markup Tools. Shows the Markup toolbar which lets you markup and annotate the drawing.
- Select Color. Change the active drawing and markup color.
- Undo. Undo the last command.
- Redo. Redo the last command.
- Multi-selection. Turn multi-selection mode On/Off.
- Layouts. Select an alternative layout from the available list.
- View mode. Controls the style in which the drawing is displayed.
- Share drawing. Shares the drawing with other users.
The Draw toolbar lets you add geometry to the drawing, such as lines, circles, and polylines.
The Draw toolbar contains the following commands:
- Circle – lets you draw a circle by first tapping a center point, and then tapping another point on the perimiter. You can also draw a circle by making a long tap, and then dragging your finger on the screen to draw the radius. Release to complete the circle.
- Polyline – lets you draw a polyline consisting of multiple vertices. Tap a point to add a vertex, or make a long tap and then drag your finger across the screen to draw the next polyline segment . When done, tap the “Done” button.
- Line – lets you draw a line comprising a start and end point. Tap to specify the start point, and tap again to specify the end point. You can also draw a line by making a long tap, then dragging your finger across the screen to the desired length. Release to end the line.
- Rectangle – lets you draw a rectangle by defining two opposite corners. Tap to specify the first corner, and tap again to specify the opposing corner. You can also draw a rectangle by making a long tap, then dragging your finger across the screen to the desired size. Release to complete the rectangle.
- Measure – shows the distance between two points on the drawing. Tap to specify the start point, and tap again to specify the end point. You can also measure a distance by making a long tap, and then dragging your your finger across the screen; release once on the target point to view the distance between the two points.
- Text – lets you annotate the drawing by entering text at a specified position. To enter text, tap the text entry icon from the toolbar, and then type the text in the text window. Click “Done” or “Cancel” to continue.
Extra: Orthogonality and Snapping. When you draw a line that is close being horizontal or vertical by 5° or less, the line will automatically be drawn orthogonally. While performing a long tap or drag operation in the vicinity of a vertex of an intersection, a snapping marker will appear to let you know that releasing your finger at that point will snap the drawn vertex to the target intersection or vertex.
The Markup toolbar lets you add markups to the drawing, such as revisions clouds. To use this toolbar, you are not required to have editing permissions for the drawing. The Markup toolbar contains the following commands:
- Rectangle – lets you draw a rectangle by defining two opposite corners. Tap to specify the first corner, and tap again to specify the opposing corner. You can also draw a rectangle by making a long tap, and then dragging your finger across the screen to the desired size. Release to complete the rectangle.
- Cloud – lets you draw a revision cloud by tapping a starting point, and then dragging your finger across the area in the drawing that you would like to markup. Release to complete the cloud.
- Text –lets you annotate the drawing by entering text at a specified position. To use the text tool, tap the text icon and then type in the text window. Click “Done” or “Cancel” to continue.
- Pencil Tool – This tool enables you to draw smoother free-line markups and doodles, with more control. Make a long tap to specify a starting point, and then dragging your finger to describe the line you want. Release to end the line.
The Edit context toolbar contains tools which enable you to move, rotate, scale, delete objects, and edit text. Once an object is selected, the Edit toolbar will be shown, offering you a choice of the following commands:
- Move – lets you move shapes by specifying a base point and distance. Tap to specify the base point, and tap again to specify the end point. You can also determine the distance to move by making a long tap, and then dragging your finger across the screen to the desired point. Release to complete the move.
- Scale – lets you scale shapes by specifying a base point and a scale factor. Tap to specify the base point, and tap again to specify the scale factor, or make a long tap and drag your finger across the screen to determine the scale factor.
- Rotate – lets you rotate shapes by specifying a base point and and rotation angle. Tap to specify the base point and tap again to specify the angle , or make a long tap and drag your finger across the screen to set the rotation angle.
- Erase – Tap the erase button to delete the selected shapes from the drawing.
- Copy - Copy the selected object and place it again in the drawing.
- Edit Text – only applicable to text objects. Edit the contents of the text object using the text editor.
- Deselect – clears the current selection.
- Trim - To trim an object you first select the new boundary to which you wish to trim your object. Then tap Trim and select the object you want to trim.
- Extend - To extend an object, you first select the new boundary or boundaries to which you wish to extend your object. Then tap Extend and select the object you want to extend.
AutoCAD WS now supports layouts in addition to the drawing’s model-space. To view a layout, tap the Layout button and select the desired layout from the available list. Tap the Layout button again to hide the selection.
You can view and markup layouts in the same way that you can using the WS web app. Editing of objects in layouts is disabled (switch to the model-space to modify objects).
AutoCAD WS also supports DWG files that are generated in Inventor®. DWG files that we’re generated by Autodesk Inventor software can now be uploaded, edited and shared using the WS web and mobile apps in the same way as drawing files created by AutoCAD.
Controlling View Modes
You can control the way in which the drawing is displayed using the Set View Mode command to either “Normal,” in which the drawing is displayed using its Model-space colors, or to “Grayscale,” in which the drawing is displayed in shades of bkack and gray emulating the effect of viewing the drawing on paper.
You can share drawings with others AutoCAD WS users for online viewing, editing, and download. Click the “Share” command to show the Share Drawing window. Select the email addresses of your collaborators and type an optional message. Use the permissions control to specify whether your collaborators are allowed to edit the drawing online and/or to download a local copy of the drawing (“Off” for both permission settings allows your recipient to only view the drawing online). If other users are also viewing the drawing simultaneously, using the AutoCAD WS web application or from another mobile device, you will be able see each other’s changes and collaborate on the drawing in real time.
Snap preview is a feature that enables you to achieve higher precision in the placing of lines or objects and the selection of specific line intersections. Whenever you hold your finger to the screen for a second, a magnifying glass will appear that magnifies and displays the exact area under your finger.
We have expanded the View Modes with the latest release of AutoCAD WS to enabling toggling between 2D and 3D views of your 3D drawings. Please note that all editing functionality is currently disabled when viewing a drawing in 3D. In each mode you can view your drawings either as Normal or in Grayscale.
Preset Viewing Angles in 3D
The 3D View toolbar comes with a selection of 10 different angles from which to view your 3D model:
In addition to the preset angles you can use your finger to rotate the drawing in three dimensions around a pivot point determined by the center of the current view.
Printing in 3D
The new Plot from mobile feature supports printing from the 3D view.
The new GPS function lets you position yourself within your design leveraging the built-in GPS functionality of your smartphone or tablet to add contextually relevant comments at precise geographic locations.
Please note that the accuracy of the AutoCAD WS GPS function is dependent on the accuracy of your device. You may have to enable the GPS function in order to get accurate information.
You can establish a point and then manually adjust the x, y and z coordinates of that pointwithin your drawing. Similarly, you can use the GPS function to identify your specific longitude, latitude and altitude and then manually adjust if necessary.
With My Location you can position yourself within your drawing and move around making notes and adding comments in specific locations.
Plot from Mobile
First you can plot your drawing as a PDF file and email it to any address in the world.
Secondly you can send your drawing directly to any web-connected HP ePrinter.
The AutoCAD WS mobile and web apps now support nine additional languages:
- Chinese – 中文
- French- Français
- German- Deutsch
- Italian – Italiano
- Japanese – 日本語
- Korean – 한국어
- Portuguese – Português
- Russian – русский
- Spanish – Español
The choice of languages was determined by the countries where AutoCAD WS has had the greatest presence.
The language in the AutoCAD WS mobile app is determined by the settings of your Android device. If you have set your Android phone or tablet to a language other than one of the eight listed here, AutoCAD WS will be presented in English by default.
For the AutoCAD WS web app the localization process will be carried out in two stages. With this release, the language of the menus and buttons can be changed by selecting the appropriate flag from the drop down menu. Contextual pop ups, like the sharing window will appear in English. The next release of AutoCAD WS will see these elements translated as well.
The language chosen is applied only to the app, not to any of your files. when you share a drawing the recipient will see the menus in the language he or she has defined.
Upload from Email
Once you’ve installed the mobile app, all DWG and DXF files that you receive as email attachments will be identified in the email client with the AutoCAD WS logo.
The upload from email feature works with all current versions of Android, beginning with version 2.1.
Opening the Email Attachment
Simply tap on the attachment to open it. If you are already signed in to your AutoCAD WS account, the drawing will open immediately. If you are not signed in, you will see the sign-in screen allowing you to sign in using your AutoCAD WS or existing Autodesk credentials. First-time users will be able to create an account from the same screen.
Open and Upload Drawing
Once you are signed in the attachment will open immediately in AutoCAD WS. The drawing will be uploaded to your online account so that you can view it from another mobile device or through the web app.
Syncing Drawings for Offline Use
Opening a drawing that you received as an email attachment will also sync the drawing to your local device allowing you to continue working with it offline. For more details about working with AutoCAD WS offline see the section below headed Offline Support.