EdrawMax review

EdrawMax can handle almost any diagram or chart

(Image: © Wondershare)

TechRadar Verdict

Thanks to a selection of comprehensive templates and generative AI, EdrawMax can produce mind maps, flowcharts, network diagrams, floorplans, and more.


  • +

    Huge library of templates and shapes

  • +

    Generative AI tool produces good results

  • +

    Excellent drawing tools


  • -

    Pricing and features are unclear

  • -

    Browser version prone to hanging/freezing

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If you need to create a flowchart, or develop a mind-map, you’re spoiled for choice. Free and paid applications are available to help you express concepts in a matter of minutes.

One of the most popular options for mind-mapping and flowchart illustration is EdrawMax from Wondershare. Offering templates and generative AI options, you can also manually create an illustration from scratch. Wondershare EdrawMax also handles  circuit diagrams, floor plans, network diagrams, and other process diagrams such as mind maps. However, if you have very specific requirements, you may be better off purchasing the software specific to your use case.

EdrawMax is browser-based, and also offers desktop applications for Windows, macOS, and Linux.

We evaluated EdrawMax, assessing it based on pricing, features, ease of use, support options, and how it measures against the competition.

EdrawMax pricing

(Image credit: EdrawMax)

EdrawMax: Plans and pricing

EdrawMax has three categories of pricing—Free, Basic, and Unlimited. Each of those has the option of Annual or Monthly billing. These cover the desktop option and the browser version.

With all options you get AI tokens, cloud storage, Visio/SVG/CAD import, and exports in PNG/JPG/PDF/Word/Excel/PPT/SVG/Visio formats. Some features are limited in the Free version, however. For example, Free subscribers get 500 AI tokens per month (about 5 diagrams) and 100MB of storage. 

For the desktop option, EdrawMax’s Basic plan is $5.90 a month with annual billing ($7.90 otherwise). With this, you get 10,000 AI tokens a month (enough for 100 AI-generated diagrams), access to all functions (browser only), unlimited shapes, themes, and pages, and Visio and CAD imports. Templates and symbols, exporting and printing with no watermark, and 1GB of cloud storage are also included.

The Unlimited plan has all of the above plus unlimited AI tokens and community templates. This is $8.25 a month on annual billing ($15.90 with a recurring monthly subscription). 

Both options have a 7-day trial and payment is by PayPal, credit card, Wepay, Alipay, linepay, and bank transfer.

Note that specific feature-by-feature differences between Free, Basic, and Unlimited are quite detailed. We found this lack of pricing simplicity frustrating and unnecessary. Additionally, the Free plan seemed geared towards forcing an upgrade early due to some unfair feature balancing.

EdrawMax AI

(Image credit: Future)

EdrawMax: Features

EdrawMax is an all-in-one diagram-making tool that can be used for flowcharts, mind maps, fishbone, network and UML diagrams, floor plans, office layouts, Gantt charts, business cards and flyers, wireframes, infographics, and presentations.

There are thousands of templates to choose from, all designed by professionals. EdrawMax also boasts extensive file compatibility, which will allow you to import files from Visio or export your own drawings to Visio, Word, Powerpoint, HTML, PDF, and image formats like JPEG and PNG.

Each type of diagram has pre-existing libraries of industry-standard symbols. Although they strictly follow the standards, all the symbols are also easy to customize, allowing you to change color and line styles.

For those who work or learn more quickly by copying existing examples, each type of diagram comes with a large collection of real-world examples which you can use as your starting point, simply replacing the content with your own.

Selecting a template for the first time launches a brief 5-step tutorial. This highlights how the menus and toolbars can be used to create new diagrams and edit templates. Given the range and depth of the diagramming this software supports, this is useful to read through.

EdrawMax provides cloud storage for collaboration with third parties and across teams. Teams are supported in Premium only. Sharing can be sent to the Edraw community, while exported files can be shared however you want.

EdrawMax editing

(Image credit: Future)

EdrawMax: Ease of use

You have two options to start using EdrawMax. We’d recommend checking out the browser version before you download and run the installer. Both versions give you a list of available template categories, ready for selection.

If you cannot find the right template, the search tool will deliver a collection based on specific keywords. For example, “network diagram” produces two results.

EdrawMax also includes generative AI tools. These cover many different purposes, such as flowchart and mindmap, drawing, tables, lists, and even timelines.

To test this, I selected the Timeline option, and entered the following prompt: “Please produce a timeline of engagements by the Durham Light Infantry in the Mediterranean Theater, 1942-1943.” The aim of this was to select something reasonably obscure, but the results were surprisingly accurate. 

After you’ve chosen a template, or created an AI project, you’ll see the workspace. Here, toolbars on top and to the left and right of the canvas enable everything from pen tools to formatting and shape insertion. 

People who are familiar with graphic design and desktop publishing apps will get the hang of EdrawMax relatively quickly. The interface is straightforward, and simple enough for anyone familiar with any illustration, mind mapping, or flowchart creation tool.

EdrawMax main

(Image credit: Future)

EdrawMax: Customer support

Over the past few years, Wondershare has developed a poor reputation, regularly accused of bundling unwanted software (crapware) with its desktop products. More recently, this practice appears to have been dialed back. 

The Help menu in the app (the “?” icon) has buttons for a “Started Guide” (which relaunches the 5-step tutorial) and a Hotkey Reference. You’ll also find a link to the Help Center, which provides a selection of basic tutorials for EdrawMax’s key features.

If you have a technical issue, you can visit the EdrawMax Support Center and open a chat window. This is initially an AI response, but you can switch to a live agent with ease. They’re slower to respond to questions than the automated option, but you’re likely to get a more tailored response.

Wondershare provides 24/7 support for EdrawMax via email, chat, and phone.

EdrawMax templates

(Image credit: EdrawMax)

EdrawMax: The competition

EdrawMax has many competitors, including Microsoft Visio, Lucidchart, SmartDraw, Cacoo, and Creately. Like these tools, EdrawMax has an online version, and like Visio, also has a desktop app.

The AI tool gives EdrawMax a fair advantage over some of these tools. It is fair to say, however, that Microsoft Visio and Lucidchart have a more mature reputation.

In terms of features, EdrawMax has an advantage over most of the tools. The confusing pricing is a disadvantage, however. 

EdrawMax: Final verdict

EdrawMax is a powerful, fully-featured drawing app that has all the features, templates, and guides for you to accomplish any task in mind.

You may find the user interface to be a little untidy, however, and the browser version tends to hang at times. The AI feature is good, and the drawing tool and large collection of shapes helps you to complete most tasks efficiently.

However, due to the tool offering more than just mind mapping and flowcharts, EdrawMax can be considered overkill. Tools with a narrower focus are available. As well as being preferable, they also have simpler pricing.

We list the best graphic design software.

Christian Cawley

Christian Cawley has extensive experience as a writer and editor in consumer electronics, IT and entertainment media. He has contributed to TechRadar since 2017 and has been published in Computer Weekly, Linux Format, ComputerActive, and other publications. Formerly the editor responsible for Linux, Security, Programming, and DIY at MakeUseOf.com, Christian previously worked as a desktop and software support specialist in the public and private sectors.