The world of graphic design and design is full of various types of software. Each of these software has its features and benefits. Adobe is known as one of the most famous companies in the field of design, graphics, and digital media.

Two very popular software of Adobe company are Illustrator and InDesign. Many people who are interested in the world of design at the beginning of their learning and work path have the question, which software is better? InDesign or Illustrator?

In this article, we want to examine the capabilities and facilities of these two popular software and answer that question.

What is Adobe InDesign?

Adobe InDesign software is a professional tool for designing printed and digital pages. Advanced tools in InDesign allow designers to easily professionally design and arrange text, images, tables, charts, and generally various printed and digital elements on a page or set of pages. Vector images are images that do not lose their quality by zooming. This software is used to create multi-page designs such as the following:

  • magazines,
  • presentation file,
  • Brochure,
  • catalog,
  • annual reports,
  • articles,
  • and e-books.

What is Adobe Illustrator and when is it used?

Adobe Illustrator software is a powerful tool in the field of graphic design and vector images. For this reason, vector images are suitable in the design of logos, diagrams, and in general, designs that need to be resized and need to have a stunning effect.

As a result, Illustrator software is a suitable option for designing the following items:

  • Logo design,
  • infographic design,
  • designing the business card,
  • Graphic Design,
  • and banner design.

The similarities and differences between Illustrator and InDesign

Now that we have become more familiar with these two software and learned how to use each one, it is time to take a closer look at the similarities and differences between Illustrator and InDesign.


  • Manage multiple projects: Both of these tools allow designers to work on multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Support for different operating systems: Both these tools support macOS and Windows operating systems.
  • Design Elements: Illustrator and InDesign both have great design elements.
  • Designing vector images: Designing with both Illustrator and InDesign software is vector-based. However, the vector design tools in Illustrator are much more advanced than InDesign.

The differences

Both Illustrator and InDesign are powerful design software, but there are important differences in their functionality, applications, and purposes.

1. Single-page and multi-page projects

Both InDesign and Illustrator software may be used in single-page and multi-page projects. However, there are some differences:

  • Illustrator is the best choice for designing single-page projects such as designing logos, posters, business cards, etc. Because it allows the designer to control visual elements such as text and images.
  • Compared to InDesign, it is a better choice for multi-page projects like magazines, brochures, and e-books. InDesign has a Master Page feature that allows users and designers to make an edit just once and it will automatically apply to all pages instead of editing each page individually.

2. Design tools and facilities

If you are looking to create creative and advanced designs, Illustrator is the right choice. This tool gives the designer many possibilities to design various images and designs to turn simple geometric shapes into something completely different and complex.

On the other hand, InDesign provides the designer with simpler design tools compared to Illustrator. InDesign software tools are mostly text-oriented. Of course, it is possible to transfer Illustrator designs and use them in InDesign design projects, which is discussed further.

Another difference between InDesign and Illustrator software is in 3D design. Although Illustrator is not a 3D design tool, it has more 3D design capabilities than InDesign.

Frequently asked questions comparing Illustrator and InDesign

1. Are Illustrator and InDesign software compatible?

Yes. Since both Illustrator and InDesign software belong to Adobe and Adobe Creative Cloud, they are completely compatible with each other.

Adobe Creative Cloud is a collection of Adobe design software. By preparing this collection, you have access to various tools such as Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop, and many other Adobe tools. As a result, instead of buying and installing each program separately, you can use this Adobe cloud service and easily run the software you need at any time and place.

2. Is it possible to convert an InDesign file to Illustrator?

Yes. To do this, first, open the desired InDesign file. Then make sure that all the elements and content in this file are in high-quality vector format.

Then select “Export” from the “File” menu. In the opened window, change the file format to “Adobe PDF” and adjust the settings related to PDF. It is important to enable the “Preserve InDesign Editing Capabilities” option in the PDF settings. This option allows Illustrator to preserve the original InDesign elements and settings.

Now open the PDF file in Illustrator. For this, use the “File” menu and the “Open” option and select the corresponding PDF file. Illustrator allows you to edit and vectorize PDF elements and save them as an Illustrator file.

3. Is it possible to convert the Illustrator file to InDesign?

Yes. For this, you need to open the Illustrator file and select the “Save As” option from the “File” section. Then, from the opened menu, change the file format to “PDF” and save the file.

Now in InDesign, by using the “File” and then the “Place” option, you can add a PDF file containing Illustrator shapes and images to your InDesign project. This allows you to use Illustrator shapes and images in InDesign.

4. Is it possible to work as a team on these two pieces of software?

Designers can collaborate as a team in InDesign. But several people cannot work on the same project at the same time and must take turns.

In Adobe Illustrator, several people can work simultaneously on a project as a team. This feature is known as simultaneous collaboration or Collaboration Mode. With this feature, team members can simultaneously work on a project in Illustrator, view and apply changes, and edit the file together.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *