Google SketchUp 7.1 now available

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This morning announced 7.1. This new version will be a  free upgrade for existing Pro users, and has emphasis on three important aspects of this easy-to-use (yet powerful and extensible) software: performance, an improved version of LayOut (2.1) and collaboration.

As for performance, the engine has been improved and you will notice that orbiting, zooming and drawing can be quicker and smoother in 7.1, for both PC and Mac editions.

LayOut 2.1, the SU componente that enables you to create presentation boards and design documents straight from your model, has now the ability to apply dimensions to scaled SU models and vector graphics. Based on my personal experience, LayOut is very good to deliver quick construction documents and has helped me a lot working with furniture manufacturers. The new dimension tool is something I was waiting for.

LayOut 2.1 also includes snap to the model, an improveed Freehand tool, lists (bullet or numbered, very useful) in the text area, improved grids and improved copy/paste, making it easier to work with other design softwares. You can see more on the video and images below.

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Site Plan dimensioned in LayOut 2.1
Site Plan dimensioned in LayOut 2.1
Dimensions for 3D Models embedded in LayOut 2.1
Dimensions for 3D Models embedded in LayOut 2.1

(those are not my designs)

As for collaboration, the new features are both in export/import and online capabilities. For example, you can now Import and Export in the COLLADA (COLLAborative Design Activity) format, a 3D file format based on open standards that allows you to easily work exchange information across different 3D softwares (Maya, Poser, 3DS Max, LightWave, Cinema 4D, Softimage XSI, Houdini, Blender, Modo, Strata 3D  and more). With SketchUp Pro 7, you can import and export files in a number of 2D and 3D formats, including DXF, DWG, 3DS, OBJ, XSI, EPS, PDF and more.

Upload component context menu shown for one building among many being modeled
Upload component context menu shown for one building among many being modeled

You can now upload components straight from SketchUp to Google’s 3D Warehouse. Previously, you needed to put the component isolated on a new file to upload it. For example, you can now split large city models into buildings, preserve Dynamic Component functionality and more.

Nearby By model search in SketchUp 7.1 Component Browser
Nearby By model search in SketchUp 7.1 Component Browser

And this urban approach gets more and more exciting, as it is now possible to import and export the now popular KMZ format, extending geo-location usage. You can even browse nearby models from inside SketchUp.

Photo Texture window in SketchUp 7.1 on a Mac
Photo Texture window in SketchUp 7.1 on a Mac

And probably one of the most exciting features is the integration with Google Streeview, which allows you to take textures directly from actual views of the city (where available). Imagine how fast and accurate you can model a city or your project’s context with this tools. And if you add collaboration with your teamwork (or other users) with components and nearby models… it becomes a powerful tool.

For more information, download a SU Pro trial version or the Free edition, just go to the Google SketchUp website.

Cite: Basulto, David. "Google SketchUp 7.1 now available" 22 Sep 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 May 2015. <>
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  • jan

    Do not, I said, do NOT download the updated version of the free version of SketchUp if you still want to import dwg-files! It’s because the SU-development team decided to REMOVE this functionality in favor of the COLLADA-implementation.

    • andy w

      If what you say is true it appears that google sketchup has further lost site of it core user in favor of a stategy to populate it google earth with 3d models… As very long time user of SketchUp it saddens me to see how this once great software company has lost it’s way on the developmental side. After seeing the new additions I give it a big yawn with the possible exception of the performance boosts…

      • Magnox

        I use SketchUp Pro every day (as well as AutoCAD). Rather than add Streetview-related fluff I’d really like them to work on some of the basics such as being able to reliably snap to centre points.

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  • Peter

    Did you read the article? Or use the Pro version? It DOES allow DWG import/export. And as for the free version, it doesn’t have much relevance as it’s clearly not aimed to architects.

    I think that Autodesk position on closing the DWG format forces SU to only use it on the paid version.

  • ChrisS WebeR

    LOL! SketchUP will still import DWG… and export. As far as I used SU I never exported DWG in free version.

    • Richard

      People aren’t READING what is being said.

      The FREE (AS IN NOT PRO) version of 7.1 SU will no longer import DWG files, whereas with 7.0 you could. This means anyone upgrading their FREE (NOT PRO) version will be forced to upgrade to PRO to be able to import DWG’s.

      So i’ll reinforce what Jan has said.

      Do NOT upgrade your free version of SU from 7 to 7.1 if you still plan to import DWG files. If you’re a PRO user then you need not worry.

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  • deio alavarez

    podrian tmarme en cuenta para descrgar Sketchup 71 ingles

  • priya


    there is a difficulty to download google sketch up……pl help me………….it is helpfull if u send in my mail……

  • Paolo

    Awesome design, Zar Zar. I relaly love the detail in the inside of your house. It’s amazing how you did it all by yourself and did not import any components from the web. A great example for others.