Today, business software review platform G2 Crowd released two more matrices ranking building-design platforms, following last month’s release of a grid charting general-purpose CAD programs. Its matrix and reports for building design and product and machine design software, the company's first, compare some of the most popular programs in each category by user feedback and market presence.

Both matrices’ “Satisfaction” metric derives from user reviews submitted to G2 Crowd, while “Market Presence” is based on vendor size and market share generated from social and public data. Products named "Leaders," such as Revit, scored high in customer satisfaction and have a sizable market presence with ample support resources; ArchiCAD and others named High "Performers" also offer high customer satisfaction but deal at a comparably smaller scale. "Contenders," like AutoCAD Architecture, are well-known within the industry but lack in the quantity or quality of reviews.

G2 Crowd

The report for building-design platforms ranks products tailored for architecture and construction and that typically include tools for building-information modeling (BIM) and MEP configuration. G2 Crowd chose the seven products—AutoCAD MEP, AutoCAD Architecture, AutoCAD, Revit, ArchiCAD, Vectorworks Architect, and DataCAD—for its matrix from the 20 or so listed on its website because each had received at least 10 professional reviews at the time the report was compiled. Products not ranked include Bentley's AECOsim Building Designer and Dassault Systemes' GT Digital Project.

Products in this category met their users’ needs about 85 percent of the time, according to submitted reviews. The report goes beyond the matrix to compare products not only to each other but also to an industry average across features such as the highest- and lowest-rated tools, customization options, performance of mobile applications, and overall user experience. Autodesk's Revit, for instance, rated higher than average for its 3D/solid modeling tools but below average for backwards compatibility.

G2 Crowd

G2 Crowd also released a report and matrix (above) for product and machine design programs, a sub-category of CAD software targeting a cross-disciplinary group of designers and engineers. Among the seven products ranked, Dassault System’s SolidWorks, Inventor, AutoCAD Mechanical, and Solid Edge were named category leaders among the more than 15 products listed online.

As with the building-design category, the related report for this group shows how products compare to each other and an industry average for topics spanning technical performance to user support. Reviewers said the platforms met their needs 82 percent of the time, on average.