Title: Camera+ Price: $1.99 (currently on sale) Developer: tap tap tap
As a Dad, my iPhone isn’t my best, most advanced camera, but it is probably my most used camera, and is especially useful and irreplaceable in those rare moments when you just have to snap a picture. In fact, being able to have a decent camera phone where I could save a number of pictures at any one time was one of the “excuses” I used when I was buying my original 3G after we found out Abby was on the way.
If you look in the App Store, there are what seems to be a million and 1 camera and photo related apps that you download. One such app is Camera+ [iTunes link] which comes from photographer Lisa Bettany and developed and distributed by tap tap tap and is worth every penny!
On the straight forward side, when it comes to image capturing, Camera+ offers a grid, allowing you to help line up your photos, an image stabilizer, which takes advantage of the phones accelerometer. By turning on the image stabilizer, the shutter button either will blink red, yellow, or green, depending on how still you’re holding the device. Once you’re holding your phone steady enough for the shutter button to blink green, Camera+ will automatically take the picture. This helps eliminate the blurry pictures you can sometime catch, but unless you have a steady hand or a surface to place to phone one to help keep it still, I’ve noticed its sometimes hard to reach the steadiness green requires. Sure you could see it as a downfall, but the purpose is there, and the desire is a steady, clear picture, so you can’t really argue with the function of it. Camera+ also offers a digital zoom, which when originally released, prior to iOS4, it was a bigger deal then it is now with digital zoom built in to the default camera app, but regardless of that, it’s a useful tool within this app.
In terms of social media, everyone wants to be able to share pictures you grab. What’s the point in catching that once in a life time moment if you can’t show it off and brag about it, right? Well Camera+ doesn’t disappoint in this area, as it offers the ability to share images directly to Twitter, facebook, and flickr, along with giving you the option to email directly from the app. However where Camera+ truly shines and sets itself apart from other apps is:
This is when Camera+ starts separating itself from the crowd and truly makes its on of the top camera apps out there. When you use Camera+ to capture images, it doesn’t throw the picture into your photo library with all your other pictures, but puts it in its own little album within the app itself. I’ll admit when I first started using this app, I wasn’t sure about this function, after using the default camera app for so long, having these photos in a different area seemed alien at first, but after a couple of uses, I absolutely love this part of the app. Basically The Lightbox allows you to store your photos you take away and out of the default photo album, giving you a chance to edit, share, save to your photo library or delete the photos you’ve taken. One function I notice with the Lightbox immediately is that the possibility of duplicate photos is removed, where it has been an issue with other apps I’ve used in the past.
Editing, Effects, and Borders
Camera+ offers a robust selection of different editing possibilities for photos that you’ve taken. You have the option to play with your photo’s exposure settings, with what is a very comprehensive set of tools, offering 11 different settings, or conditions including sunset and beach, but I have found that the auto exposure does a decent job of making your photo more vibrant. Actually if you do nothing else with your photos, I’d suggest using the auto exposure. I’ve even gone back to some photos I’ve taken prior to using Camera+ and improved their quality using the auto exposure.
Another selection of tools allow for cropping of your photo, but where most apps will simply allow you to drag over what you want cropped, Camera+ offers you a good variety of presets that include 4×6 and square.
Camera+ doesn’t stop there, offering up a large number of special effects you can use on your photo, offering a total of 24 presets separated into 3 groups; Color, Retro and Special. Although I’ve never been one for many effects past black & white (if you can call that an effect), I have found myself using a few of these more and more as just a fun way to spice my photos up.
Finally you have the border tool, which will allow you to finish your photo with 8 different selections including thin, classy borders, and gritty. Giving you a chance to give your photos that extra “oomph” with that timeless Polaroid look!
Even though I can do any and all of these using Photoshop, but that takes away the fun and I find myself using this app more and more and simply having fun with it. For a Dad, a parent, or just someone that likes to snap pictures at any given moment, this is a must have app to help open up your creativity on the go. NOTE: Check out Lisa’s blog to see more info and a couple of short info videos on how the app works.