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Figma Shuts Down AI App Designer Over Apple iOS Copy Concerns

Figma Shuts Down AI App Designer Over Apple iOS Copy Concerns

On Wednesday, a week after Figma shared a prompt-to-design AI generator called Make Design , the company decided to pause the tool. The reason? Make Design created what appeared to be direct carbon copies of Apple’s iOS Weather app.

Andy Allen, founder of NotBoring Software and one of the first users invited to test Make Design, first reported the issue on X on Monday.

When Allen tried the “weather app” prompt with Make Designs, the AI ​​tool produced three results that were identical to Apple’s Weather app for the iPhone.

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Other suggestions Allen tried, such as “exciting, interesting, cheerful weather app, 3D, real-time rendering, playful colors, smart interactions, gestures, clean typography,” yielded the same results.

He noted that “Figma AI looks quite heavily trained on existing apps” and told designers who wanted to use the feature to “thoroughly check existing apps” to avoid legal issues.

Figma CEO Dylan Field said Tuesday that Allen’s allegations about training data were “false” and that Make Design “was not trained on Figma content, community files, or app designs.”

If the AI ​​tool wasn’t designed for existing apps, how did it know to mimic the Apple Weather app so closely? According to Field, the problem lay with the AI ​​tool’s design systems, not its training data.

Dylan Field, Co-Founder and CEO of Figma. Photograph: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Figma CTO Kris Rasmussen weighed in on the controversy in an interview with The Verge on Tuesday. Rather than outright deny that Make Design was trained on other apps, Rasmussen said he couldn’t say for sure. He added that Figma played no role in training the AI ​​behind the tool.

“We did not perform any training as part of the generative AI features,” Rasmussen told the publication, a statement he also reiterated on X.

Related: OpenAI May Have Used YouTube Videos for AI Training

Rasmussen revealed that OpenAI’s GPT-4o and Amazon’s Titan Image Generator G1 were the two key AI models behind Make Design.

Both OpenAI and Amazon are accused of using copyrighted work to train their models.

Make Design will be available again after Figma’s team performs a full quality assurance test on the design systems, Field said. The tool has also drawn criticism from designers for its potential to eliminate jobs.

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