OmniGraffle is an application designed to create diagrams and digital illustration on macOS and iOS. It was created by The OmniGroup. It is used to create graphics and visualisations. The app contains several design tools, including WYSIWYG view, where you can create objects by dragging the mouse. It also offers the possibility of adding notes, creating documentation and specification for all prototypes and mock-ups. OmniGraffle’s main competitor is Microsoft Visio.

App’s sources and tools

OmniGraffle contains tools that include canvas, templates, vector drawing or a grid. Other properties include automatic layout settings and document management.


Canvases are areas in which users can create shapes. Attributes that can be assigned to canvases include, for example, the name, size, grid or diagram layout. Users can create and also share canvases and layers with automatically available updates. This allows user to create layers at once and then move them between canvases and automatically update them if changes occur.


In OmniGraffle, templates are application resources. Template documents can be modified by the user to suit his needs. Some exemplar templates are available in the app. Users can create, edit and save others to create the most consistent visualisations.

Other templates

Those templates are also Omni Graffle’s application resources. Templates are pictures and elements such as icons or buttons used by OmniGraffle documents. A wide range of templates is available in default for an immediate use. Users can also create, share, download and view templates online, through OmniGraffle Stenciltown or other libraries, such as Graffletopia.

Vector drawing

Because graphics created in OmniGraffle is based on vectors, visualisations are composed of mathematical representation of pixels. Rather than creating hand strokes, users make them using vectors.

Smart Guides tool

SmartGuides is a tool that can be turned on and off. When moving the object along the canvas, SmartGuides helps with aligning it on the canvas by highlighting the grid. At the same time, it allows further simplification using dynamic functionality that exactly aligns objects.

Other functionalities

Other functionalities include the artwork or brush strokes, scalability of texts and shapes, text following shape, combination of shapes, styles for diagrams, automatic functions for working with layers or the documentation management.

The advantages of using OmniGraffle

  • Market leader in Mac software for creating diagrams. It is the most used tool for creating diagrams on macOS and iOS.
  • A wide range of shapes and templates. A wide range of application resources is available in OmniGraffle, some of which are a part of the app in default, others can be subsequently gained through Stenciltown or Graffletopia.
  • Attractive visual design. OmniGraffle combines diagram’s mathematical accuracy with aesthetic beauty.
  • It offers various packages to increase availability. OmniGraffle is available in both Standard and Professional versions with the possibility to purchase available updates.
  • It can be used as long as it is compatible. Once a user gets OmniGraffle, he pays no additional charges.
  • Many professionals can work with it. There is a documentation of this app and also qualified consultations can be obtained.

The disadvantages of using OmniGraffle

  • Price. For many individuals or smaller businesses, the product can be unavailable.
  • Technical diagrams. Some users indicate, that OmniGraffle isn’t very suitable for creating technical diagrams.
  • Only for Mac. OmniGraffle isn’t compatible with other OS, such as Linux or Windows.
  • Not very frequent updates. The desktop version of OmniGraffle has available updates only once every few years.
  • Collaborative editing. OmniGraffle doesn’t allow collaborative editing of documents.