Framer X Tour:
Behind the Scenes
Photos, product spoilers and Twitter reactions from our multi-city US tour.
O ver the last few weeks, Framer co-founders Koen Bok and Jorn van Dijk have been on a whirlwind tour of the US. Along with key members of the team, they’ve showcased Framer X in boardrooms, meeting spaces and huge halls. The goal was twofold: get real-life reactions to an altogether different design tool and gather constructive user feedback. Every demo or event ended with an open format Q&A, where the team tried to be as transparent as possible about capabilities, launch dates and future plans.
To give you a sense of what it felt like to be ‘in the room’ (and some hints about Framer X), we’ve compiled the best tweets, quotes and photo recaps from all four cities of the US leg of the tour.
WARNING: This post contains Framer X spoilers!
The tour kicked off in Seattle, where we demoed to design teams at Disney, Microsoft, Zillow and Amazon followed by an open event for one of Framer’s strongest communities, hosted at Airbnb’s new Pacific Northwest offices.
After being heads down on the product for so long, our Head of Engineering Eelco Lempsink got a kick out of hearing first-hand feedback from both potential and power users.
“The technical designers were excited about the endless possibilities of React-based components, but everyone else had their minds blown when we showed them how you can tweak advanced interactive components using simple UI,” says Eelco.
During private demo sessions, large companies were particularly drawn to the feature set that would help design teams scale. “We demoed at a company that was in the process of building out their design system and someone said: 'So we’ll have a single source of truth for both design and development? Isn’t that exactly what we want?',” says Niels van Hoorn, Framer product engineer.
In Silicon Valley, the enthusiasm was palpable during demos at Airbnb, Dropbox, Facebook, Google, Twitter and more. Framer’s new VP of Growth, John Bonten, was along for the ride and reports that “while high-profile tech companies were interested in learning more about how interactive components would work for teams, others were completely amazed by the network potential of the Store feature within Framer X.”
We also hosted an open event at the electric-pink SoMA headquarters of Lyft, the popular ride-sharing company. Over burritos and wine, designers were treated to their first look at Framer X by co-founders Koen and Jorn. "Presentations in front of an audience never get easy. To top it off, we were showcasing a very early version of the product,” says Jorn. “Of course live demos are always risky, but we felt it was important to give people a feel for how Framer X would fit into their workflow.”
“The crowd reaction was electric. As product makers, we obsess over every little detail, so it was refreshing to get community buy-in. We got some hard-hitting questions too, but they’ve been integral in helping us decide where to focus the last few months of our development,” says Koen.
By the time the Framer team reached the sunny shores of LA, news of the tour had spread via the design community and the team had their work cut out for them. At demos for Hulu, Headspace, Tinder and Tesla, people came armed with questions. Framer product designer, Benjamin den Boer says that while most were excited about the new layout tools stack and the introduction of an in-app Store, many were curious about how React would be integrated into Framer.
“We had to shift the understanding of Framer X as a production endpoint and instead help people understand that it’s an environment that allows you to mix production and prototype components. And that’s where things start to get really powerful,” says Benjamin.
On a whirlwind visit to the city, Framer stopped by the MLB, Shutterstock, Betterment, Warby Parker and Peloton offices. “It was incredibly fulfilling to drop in on the design teams behind some of my favorite products, and then get to see their reactions to Framer X,” says product designer Krijn Rijshouwer. At the open event, hosted in partnership with Ernst & Young, VP of Sales Seth DeHart, reports:
“People were mostly surprised at how different the product is compared to any other design tool. But they also immediately understood that Framer X is doing a lot more to make design accessible for everyone.”
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