Oh Google! Oh Google! Oh Google! No sooner is the company putting to rest one social-slash-messaging app than it is working on three others in its wake. Today's newcomer is a photo sharing and editing app that Google confirmed to TechCrunch as "one of many [experiments] it's running."
According to TechCrunch, this new app would be like a mix of Path and Snapchat and Google Photos, leveraging Google's image recognition technology. It is less of a messaging app and more of a place where users create and join groups dedicated to photo sharing. Anyone could upload, edit, and tag the photos shared to a group, and Google would work its magic sauce behind the scenes to identify objects in photos, tag them, organize them, and make them easier to find in the future.
Remember when Adobe at least pretended it was making a "real" version of Photoshop for Android? That was nice. Now we have no less than four "Photoshop" apps - Photoshop Express, Photoshop Mix, Photoshop Sketch, and the new Photoshop Fix. Separating and dumbing down the program's functions into bite-sized mobile experiences makes a certain kind of sense, but as someone who's been using the desktop program for half his life, I can't help but be annoyed at the nebulous branding.
Prisma has been available on Android for exactly a month now, but the app's developers haven't wasted time trying to improve it in the meantime. Shortly after the app's release, an update added a much-needed Save button, but there was still one major inconvenience to using the app: the wait times and the overloaded servers.
Prisma doesn't work like all other photo editing apps. Its effects aren't just regular filters à la Instagram, but they're built on neural networks that try to understand the original image and apply changes in a way that works specifically with them. So far, when you wanted to try a filter in the app, you had to wait until your photo was uploaded to Prisma's servers, the algorithms were run there to get your edit, and then the resulting image downloaded back again to your device.
Recent updates to both the Photos and Camera apps have included some really interesting clues, suggesting Google may be planning to put a lot of effort into upping its game with smartphone photographers. The latest update to Snapseed was no different; not only did it bring a few worthwhile new features, but some resources inside the apk also betray plans for the future. Snapseed will be adding enhanced controls for working with white balance in RAW mode and there's an effects randomizer coming to the editor.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android's application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information.
Since its release in 2012, Pixlr has received several updates and tweaks, but no major changes to its interface. That left the app looking like a Gingerbread relic on my and many other users' modern smartphones with their material looks and spiffy animations. For an app that specializes in making things look prettier, Pixlr wasn't fulfilling its own end of the bargain. Take a look at what Pixlr was like before today:
A number of Android phones can capture RAW photos now, but editing them on Android is tricky. There are a few apps that do it, but they're clunky or as in the case of Lightroom, cost money. Now Google's free Snapseed editor has been updated to v2.1 with RAW editing tools. We've got the APK on APK Mirror if you want to take it for a spin.
Aviary is one of the more popular photo editors on Android. In the past there were various effect packs available for purchase, but in the latest update Aviary has added a premium upgrade. It's a little strange, though. For $1.99 you get access to all the effects, filters, stickers, and so on, but only for 30 days.
Here's a surprise for you. For once we're not talking about a photo editing app that has come to Android after being available on iOS for months or worse yet, years. How novel! Overam is the name of said app and it's being released on Android first (maybe only?).
While Overam does offer the usual panoply of filters, its selling point is the usage of geometric shapes to create a disconnect between two parts of the image and highlight the one you want. You start with one of 200+ geometric shapes ranging from the simple to the most complex, pick one of the 5 different blur effects included, add a filter if you want to (including dual filters that only apply to part of the image), and you can save your photo locally, share it, or go on to make another edit on top of it.
Google's Snapseed photo editor is receiving a big bump to version 2.0, aiming to give users "the precision and control of professional photo editing software."
With the new version number comes a new product icon and a refreshed design that cuts out the gradients, textures, and holo action bar of Snapseed's past.
The new design puts a simple histogram under your photo, and conceals the app's tools and filters under an unassuming floating action button. The actual editing screen has been similarly refreshed, with familiar editing gestures intact.
The 2.0 update isn't just skin-deep though. With the new Snapseed, users can enjoy non-destructive editing, so re-editing or undoing changes doesn't mean starting from scratch.
Whatsapp gets all the attention, but Telegram has a lot going for it too. This messaging app features full end-to-end encryption and a modern material theme. As of v2.5 it also has a photo editor and optional passcodes for improved privacy.