Photo Corners

A   S C R A P B O O K   O F   S O L U T I O N S   F O R   T H E   P H O T O G R A P H E R

Enhancing the enjoyment of taking pictures with news that matters, features that entertain and images that delight. Published frequently.

Apple's Photos Arrives In The Spring Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

8 April 2015

As promised, Apple delivered Photos, its new photo application, along with today's OS 10.10.3 update. At the same time, the company pulled Aperture from the App Store, as it said it would early last month.

Apple highlighted some of Photos features in the update notice from its App Store:

With Photos you can:

  • Browse your photos by time and location in Moments, Collections and Years views
  • Navigate your library using convenient Photos, Shared, Albums and Projects tabs
  • Store all your photos and videos in iCloud Photo Library in their original format and in full resolution
  • Access your photos with powerful and easy-to-use editing tools that optimize with a single click or slider, or allow precise adjustments with detailed controls
  • Create professional-quality photo books with simplified bookmaking tools, new Apple-designed themes and new square book formats
  • Purchase prints in new square and panoramic sizes.

Photos, like iPhotos, Aperture and Lightroom, provides both a database manager for your photo collection as well as non-destructive editing tools (where edits are stored in the database, leaving the original image data alone).

There are many applications that can just catalog your collection (iView Media Pro) without allowing edits and there are many image editing applications that can either edit the bitmapped images (Photoshop) or store instructions for edits with the image (Lightroom).

In discussions about Photos, we've seen these categories often confused.

We're downloading the update now and will have more to say about the initial release later.


(Later the same day...)

After updating our traveling laptop to OS 10.10.3, we took a look at the new Photos application after confirming that iPhoto 9.6.1 was still on our drive.

It looks a lot like the Photos app we reviewed on our iPad and iPhone. Which is a good thing.

Not only are the editing tools familiar to users of the iOS version but the images are shared on iCloud Photo Library. Or can be, if you enable that feature. You're asked when you first launch Photos and can defer your decision, enabling it later in Preferences, if you prefer.

We don't mind sharing our iOS image that way, but we don't want to share our camera images. It's simply a question of capacity. And one of the first things Photos does is convert your iPhotos library to the new format. So we declined the invitation. And yet we were still able to see all the photos we are currently sharing, just as we had been with iPhoto.

Apple offers a minimal amount of cloud storage at no charge and additional storage for a fee.

We reviewed the introductory slide show but if you've used the iOS version, you can skip it. Then we identified a few faces and edited an image or two before deleting a few hundred old screen shots we really don't need any more.

Photos. Edit mode with some hidden options.

A pleasant experience on the whole, but not compelling. It is only v1.0, of course. And there's something to be said for getting in on the ground floor of an application and growing with it. We're certainly glad we started at the beginning with both Photoshop and Lightroom, for example.

We remain unimpressed with the editing tools (where's Curves?), both their sophistication and the user interface. Using a hairline to indicate a setting across a slider with preview images simulating the effect just doesn't work for us. Numeric values are available optionally (click the Down arrow to reveal them) and you can Copy Adjustments (but not a single one, apparently).

We'll refrain from pointing out what's missing in v1.0. A lot is missing. But we don't mind. At this point it's best to think of Photos as a new assistant on six months probation. Work with what it can do and don't rely on it for everything.

That's probably why both iPhotos and Aperture are still compatible with OS X.

BackBack to Photo Corners