Everyone's favorite novelty camera app that hasn't been bought for a billion dollars, Paper Camera, saw an update to version 3 today. Among the new features, the app has added support for the front-facing camera, the ability to share to a variety of sites, including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. The app also allows users to buy extra controls via an in-app purchase that add even more customization controls to the already impressive filters.

SC20120502-123545 SC20120502-123429 PaperCamera2012-05-02-12-37-39

The previous version of Paper Camera added support for video recording, so this rounds out a rather ample set of features. While it may not be enough to take Instagram down, this will certainly be worth it for users of the app. The in-app purchase is, as usual, pretty disappointing. Especially since the paid app already costs $2. Still, an extra buck isn't that much to spare for an hobbyist on this polished of an app. The update is available now via the Play Store, so hit up your device if you've already got this app or grab it from the widget below.


As per the comments below, the developers have decided not to charge for the extra customizations after all. If you paid for the optional add-on via the in-app purchase, you'll be refunded and the team is looking into finding a way to thank those that did.  We'll see what happens with that. In the meantime, good on the Paper Camera team for doing the right thing here.

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • Kaltasan

    Would be happy if video recording worked properly. Maybe this can be bought in-app now :(

  • Sven Enterlein

    I got it as free app on amazon loooong ago. Not that I ever used it but the update will probably take another few weeks to show up there.

  • Paper Camera team

    Ok Guys, JFDP Labs here, after popular demand it's clear that nobody likes the new "add-on" as in-app purchase. 
    Just to be clear, we care 2000% about our fans, and 0.1% about money, we just want to keep you guys happy so we are getting rid of it. Please share this with any of your friends that had being unhappy about it!
    Just to be fair with the people that actually bought it 1) They will be able to keep it, 2) If for some reason they'll reset their phone and loose we'll find something else to give them.

    • Kaf

      Instead of getting rid of it, you should include the "add-on" free in the update, why would you charge for an update feature? You guys don't want to be like EA that charge for any insignifcant update.... why screw a loyal base that bought your application already?

      • Paper Camera team

        Yes we are but we needed to push this fix out ASAP. We'll included for free and we'll give something extra to the people that bought it. Or alternatively we'll refund them. 
        We didn't expect this kind of reaction to be honest, the in-app purchase is totally optional, infact I'd say only for the super super hard core people, but somehow everybody thinks that they have to pay to update, which we'll never do. But as you said, we are not EA so it's still a learning experience for us as well, this is why we are acting really fast, the update hasn't even been out for 6 hours and we've already removed it. 

        • Kaf

          You know, when you have a direct answer from the developers saying that they will correct stuff, learn from the experience and push an ASAP fix makes me trust/love you. You guys rock for the simple fact of being on touch with the community.

          Keep the good work, really, is nice to see the developers worried about their fans.

          • Paper Camera team

            Ok we are pushing a new update out, in-app purchase removed and feature made free for everyone, to the people who actually bought it, we'll refund everyone and I'd also like to find a way to thank then all :)

  • Paper Camera team


    Ok we are pushing a new update out, in-app purchase removed and feature made free for everyone, to the people who actually bought it, we'll refund everyone and I'd also like to find a way to thank then all :)

  • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

    I'm sorry, but it sorta makes me angry to see that there was a backlash against having an in-app purchase in this case.  I don't agree with apps that come out with an initial feature set and then nothing gets better ever again without IAP, but Paper Camera has seen a number of real improvements and new features without any added costs.  It's great when developers are making money on the initial purchase of the app, but that can only pay for so many improvements.  It offends me a bit to see that people don't respect that there's an expense to continued development and right now the only good way to implement that is IAPs.

    • ChumbleSpuzz

      It's interesting the different mindsets with PC vs smartphones when it comes to purchasing software. This is evidently a major release, as indicated by the version, not a point release.  As such, both Microsoft and Apple charge you for major updates from one version to the next, i.e. Windows 7 to 8, MS Office, OS X, etc, but we expect patches and incremental updates to be freely available. Should the app market be different? Have we just come to expect that when we purchase an app it should be free from then on until eternity? Granted smartphone apps are currently not the same as the big PC software suites, but I can envision a point in time when this will change.

      • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

        I'm not arguing with you, just adding to the discussion.  These are challenging issues, especially because of the wide differences between the two and the scales of economy.  A lot of differences exist:

        Price - Desktop apps, even the cheapest shareware, rarely go for less than $5 and it's common to see many apps hovering between $40 to $50 and plenty getting up to the thousands.  Mobile apps, even some that do far more than desktop apps, rarely cross $15.

        Globalized Marketplace - Aside from the Mac App Store, there are no centralized markets for software on the desktop (at least none that get regular use).  The increased availability and visibility of apps on mobile devices has swung the situation wildly in favor of higher sales...and if anybody doubts it, just take a look at the effect it's had on MacOS, the average number of installed apps has nearly doubled thanks to their store.

        Integration - Most mobile apps live in a sandbox while many desktop apps are so integrated into the OS that uninstalling a desktop app can actually be nearly impossible for even the developers of that app.  As a result, people see a lot of mobile apps as being light-weight commodities that they can try on and delete if they don't like them.

        Customer Base - Due to the reasons above, as people may have noticed, it's easy for companies to amass 10s of thousands of users and it's pretty common to cross into the 6 digits.  With higher users comes higher support costs, but also more options for monetizing (selling services, advertising and cross-promotion for other paid apps).

        I know I have more differences, but I've been awake for WAY too many hours and stuff is falling out of my head as soon I think of it...I'm gonna snack and then grab some sleep..I've spent the last 36 hours setting up a new development computer and getting other stuff done...but first, I'll finish my thought.

        The catch is, when a company sells software, they either need recurring profits (like ads or subscriptions) or they need to make enough from the original sale price to fund continued development, new features, and new products while working on continuing to gain more customers...or they shut down, cease updates, and move on.  The one mid-point option in all of this would be In-App Purchases, but those have gained a terrible reputation thanks to the abuses by companies like EA, Glu and Gameloft.  At a certain point, something has got to give, cause companies can't (or won't) afford to update apps for several years to come without some way to make money back.

        Ok, time for sleep...Sadly, I'll miss the live SGSIII announcement.