9+ Adobe Indesign Alternatives and Competitors

Adobe created the desktop publishing and typesetting software program InDesign. You may use it to produce books, newspapers, periodicals, flyers, posters, brochures, and more.

Year Founded: 1999
Headquarters: San Jose, California, United States

However, InDesign has certain restrictions, such as the difficulty of changing formulas or mathematical formulae. 

Additionally, you must work very hard to balance the space between the two paragraphs. A selection of the best tools to take the place of InDesign is provided below. Both open-source (free) and proprietary (paid) applications are included in the list.

Pros: Good output project features, good quality content for print and other digital purposes

Cons: Displays images in low resolution, heavy application, takes too much space in the computer.

List Of The Top Alternatives Of Adobe Indesign


Year Founded: 2012
Headquarters: Perth, Australia

Canva is more of a tool for designers than it is for publishing. The production of blog graphics, presentations, Facebook cover images, flyers, posters, invites, and other materials is made easier using Canva. 

The user obtains a free design tool with simple controls in the basic edition. Non-profit organizations can also sign up for a free pro account.

Marketers, social media freelancers, and start-ups that wish to swiftly and simply generate stunning graphic designs are also among the program’s target audiences.

Pros: Simple interface, user-friendly

Cons: Limitation on templates, limited export settings, and IP belongs to Canva.

Have a look at the top Canva alternatives and competitors.


Year Founded: 2009
Headquarters: European Union (EU)

Both desktop and online versions of the layout and set application are available. You may use any browser to view it, and downloads are available for Windows, macOS, and Linux. The free edition of InDesign is accessible but has a constrained feature set, just like the other options listed below. 

It is necessary to pay for the complete version. The complete edition is the only one that offers certain features like the spell checker and Pantone and HKMS color models, for instance. 

Free users are also unable to use the PDF import and export features. The good news is that you may still use the free version for both personal and professional use.

Due to its straightforward layout and user-friendly interface, the application is still a suitable choice for novices despite this.

Pros: Good layout, good customer support, multiple pricing options

Cons: Not very user-friendly, could be made more optimized 


Year Founded: 2003
Headquarters: Washington US

A very good, popular, and free alternative to InDesign is Scribus. The extensive design application is available for Windows, macOS, and several GNU/Linux systems.

The application has incredibly consistent growth and is frequently updated to sustain growth. 

Scribus is a program with many useful features but has a lesser feature set than the Adobe suite. Applications include the design of entire journals or books and simple advertising.

Incorporating markers, links, and other information elements into animated and interactive PDF files is also possible.

Pros: One of the best free desktop publishing software. Files can be read using simple text editors.

Cons: Lack of regular updates. Lacks features as compared to Indesign.


Year Founded: 2014
Headquarters: South Jordan, Utah, United States

Lucidpress doesn’t require a download to utilize its publishing features; the program may be used from a browser. The web-based print and publishing tool enables the production of magazines, newsletters, and brochures. 

Lucidpress emphasizes digital forms like slideshows and newsletters much more than Scribus does. In its free edition, professional users cannot utilize Lucidpress as an alternative to InDesign.

It is a useful alternative for amateur users who wish to develop occasional or one-off tiny projects. Those who need additional RAM or a wider variety of features must pay for Lucidpress. 

Pros: Highly satisfied customers, easy to use, diversified benefits.

Cons: Finding the right template takes time.

Affinity Publisher

Year Founded: 2019
Headquarters: Nottingham, UK

Affinity Publisher is a great choice if you’re seeking a near substitute for Adobe InDesign. This application is significantly more appropriate for a tight budget and has many capabilities with InDesign.

Additionally, full preflight inspection, which finds any potential errors in your documents, is now available in Affinity Publisher. Despite all its merits, this software has a drawback.

Endnotes and footnotes are not supported, which is a great difficulty for many book publishers and difficult for GREP-based and nested styles, which InDesign users widely use. But given how frequently the program is updated, this capability could be added in later releases.

Pros: Comprehensive toolbox, easy to use

Cons: Crowded interface, takes time to understand for beginners.


Year Founded: 1981
Headquarters: Denver, Colorado, United States

The dependable and functional program can import InDesign files and perform nearly all of InDesign’s functions. There are several standout features for both print and digital design. 

Use it to create everything from flyers and posters to magazines, novels, and other digital publications, as well as brochures, catalogs, and other printed materials.

Like those in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, tools for picture editing and illustration are also included.

Pros: Customized template, interactive content, multiple format support.

Cons: It does not support flash files, and the Drop and drag functions do not work, as compared to Indesign.

Swift Publisher

Year Founded: 2003
Headquarters: Ukraine 

At the very least, if you’re using a Mac, Swift Publisher is worthwhile a look. Its collection of over 500 templates for a wide range of projects, including bi-fold and tri-fold brochures, catalogs, business cards, social media, disc labels, covers, address labels, and more, makes this inexpensive DTP tool stand out from the competition.

2,000 free clipart images, 100 image masks, a selection of 2D and 3D heading presets, and many templates are all included with Swift Publisher. 

Really, Swift Publisher has a lot going for it. Once it concerns to the layout itself, you have access to some complex capabilities like double-page spreads, infinite layers, parent pages, customizable grids, affluent tools, writing to RGB or CMYK, and exporting to PNG, TIFF, JPEG, EPS, and PDF after you’re done. 

Pros:  easy to use, friendly interface

Cons: The user and the receiver of data are both required to use the application for data exchange. Not suitable for big companies.

Adobe Indesign Alternatives

FAQs for Adobe Indesign Alternatives and Competitors

Can InDesign be extended?

Yes. Using common programming languages like ActionScript, C++, JavaScript, AppleScript, UXP Script, and VBScript, developers may fully automate and expand InDesign. Using Adobe Exchange, which is linked with InDesign, developers may now sell and distribute their extensions to the full Creative Cloud install base. To assist adapt and create InDesign plug-ins, the InDesign software development kit (SDK) offers documentation, tools, and example code. Visit the InDesign Developer Center for further details. Utilize scripting tools to learn more about automating publishing activities in InDesign.

Describe how the many Adobe products work together with InDesign.

Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat Pro, InCopy, and Flash Professional all seamlessly connect with InDesign. The user interface, commands, panels, and tools shared by InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash Professional, and InCopy make it simple to transfer your knowledge from one software to another when you’re studying it as well as to switch between them quickly.
Laying up, enhancing, and updating graphics is simpler, thanks to the ability to import native Photoshop and Illustrator files. Whether you publish to print, the web, or devices, native support for PDF files offers you dependable, consistent output. Because InDesign and Flash Professional are tightly integrated, you can transfer your page layouts with excellent fidelity and keep any animation, sound, or video assets you’ve included in your projects. Additionally, InDesign and InCopy collaborate to give small creative teams effective editorial workflow management.

Is there a solution for huge publishing settings using InDesign?

Yes. Solutions integrators worldwide may create publishing systems compatible with InCopy and InDesign if you need a specialized solution based on core InDesign technology. Find out more about specialized editorial publishing services.

What languages are supported for creating and sharing InDesign files?

You may open and edit Indic, Japanese, Middle Eastern, Chinese, and Korean layouts in Roman and Indic versions of InDesign and Roman and Indic files in Japanese, Middle Eastern, Chinese, or Korean versions since all versions of InDesign use the same file format. But unlike the Japanese, Middle Eastern, Chinese, and Korean versions of InDesign, the Roman versions lack the typographic, layout grid, and frame grid capabilities for editing Middle Eastern and Asian text.

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