Did you know that the Google Play Store has a rather large collection of apps dedicated to making better use of your phone or tablet’s built-in camera? Well, it does, and recently we went scratching to see what we could find, and the results of our search are to be seen below. We’ve rounded up ten camera/photography apps from around the Play Store, all of which are useful, or fun, or both for your perusal.
Instagram is one of the best apps for your phone, and once you’ve used it, it’s easy to see why. It is simple in concept, letting users take photos and apply one of nineteen effects. There are limitations, and they’re there on purpose, with the most notable being the fact that the photos are square, not rectangular as you’d expect from the regular photos from the average smartphone camera. The beauty of Instagram isn’t just the photos it creates, but that they can be easily shared on Instagram’s own social network, with other like-minded photographers. It’s also possible to share photos to Facebook, Tumblr, Flickr, or via email.
Aviary is a company that made its name with a web-based editing suite that rivalled Adobe’s Photoshop. Now, it’s available for Android devices – and it’s very, very good. Photo Editor by Aviary is one of the best editing apps out there, purely for its simple, yet powerful, approach to making your photos look good. Browsing your library is fast, applying effects is easy, and there are a few extra too, like adding text, frames, or stickers. And if you like filters, there’s good news: Aviary keeps developing new filters all the time, and sells them on the Google Play Store for free, or starting at R7.99. With so many options, there will always be a filter for a photo you want.
If you think Instagram is too basic, Snapseed will be your dream app. Here you can choose your photo and then go through a number of different filters and fixes, with an almost infinite combination of adjustments to get you very unique results. And instead of cluttering things up with buttons, the swipe-based interface will really make photo editing fun. Best of all, there’s a button for viewing your before and after results, before saving a photo.
Adobe’s award-winning photo-editing application for desktops is now an award-winning app for tablets and phones, too. It has many of the powerful features that makes it so versatile on PC, including
customisable filters, layered editing, selection brushes, fill tools, and more. It can edit high-resolution images (up to 12 megapixels) and imports images from Google Image Search, when you’re working on a complex photo creation. You get what you pay for, and then some.
If you’ve been disappointed by the lack of professional features in the default Android camera app, downloading this one from NEast Studios America will make you happy. It retains the simplicity of the Android camera app, while adding a whole bunch of professional-level features that expand your photo-taking options. The options you’ll see arranged along the left edge of the app expand to show a wide range of additional features, like a panorama mode, a reduced noise mode and even the option to use volume buttons as shutter buttons
To rearrange your favourite snaps into a creative collage using this incredibly intuitive app, all you have to do is let your fingers do the resizing, rotating and positioning. Choose a background and get to work, and within minutes you’ll have a brand-new image to share with friends via the built-in Share function. The final image produced isn’t exactly super high-resolution so you won’t be printing it, but it is easily good enough for sharing digitally via your favourite social networks.
Modern Android smartphones are so powerful that their apps are able to do things that a few years ago were only possible on a full-power desktop PC. PicsPlay Pro is one such app, and it puts a huge amount of editing power in your hands. Getting to grips with the huge array of features is easy thanks to the clever way everything is arranged by themes, and there are over 200 effect presets to work with. The interface is perfect for manipulating with fingers, too, and once you get used to everything the sky is the only limit your creativity will face.
This isn’t a very serious app, but it’s certainly a fun one. It allows you to shoot four photos, and then combine them into a collage. It has a large number of collage configurations to choose from, and when you have chosen your desired config, you are shown what you are shooting in each of the frames so that you can position your collage properly. The app integrates with Photolr PS, a basic editing app that provides a few basic functions, allowing you to tweak your photos and collages so they’re just right.
Have you ever needed a scanner and one hasn’t been available, or it was but it couldn’t save the scanned image to PDF? Cam Scanner – Phone PDF Creator solves that particular problem. It turns any Android smartphone or tablet into a document scanner, and employs advanced algorithms to automatically crop and enhanced photographed documents to create clear, bright PDFs that can be shared or emailed easily. It even has a few editing tools to make your PDF look its absolute best before saving it to your documents folder, and the ability to create multi-page PDFs.
QR codes seem to have been more of a fad than the genuinely-useful revolution their creators probably hoped they’d be, but nevertheless it can still sometimes be interesting or just plain amusing to find out where, exactly, a QR code might take you. This app is about as simple as it gets – it fires up your device’s camera, captures the QR code you’re looking at and loads up the associated content. It also creates QR codes for you, and can help to automate things like connecting to a certain Wi-Fi network by creating a QR code that performs all of the necessary steps automatically when scanned.