Graduations, Father’s Day, weddings, family reunions, barbecues and vacations—the summer season presents many picture-perfect moments to capture on camera. However, chances are many of these photos won’t be taken on a traditional camera. According to InfoTrends 2014 U.S. Photo Merchandise End-User Survey, more than 46 percent of consumers say their digital camera of choice now is their smartphone.
Cameras first began to be widely integrated with cell phones just 10 years ago. Today’s smartphones include cameras with lenses, features and resolution that rival many digital point-and-shoot cameras. And with that evolution, digital photography by phone has become a convenient, quick and easy process — aided by plenty of photo-editing apps to help us be creative and stay organized.
Smartphone cameras are inherently simple and easy to use for even the most amateur of photographers. To help you take the very best photos on-the-go, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite photography apps for smartphones, tablets and computers. Save storage space and cut down on mobile data usage by downloading and using these apps while connected to your in-home broadband connection.
- Photo Transfer App ($2.99 at iTunes, $1.99 at Google Play) – Free up space on your phone and back-up all of your photos on your desktop or laptop. Doing so will ensure your favorite memories and photo moments will be saved in the event your smartphone is lost or damage. Turn to a tool like Photo Transfer App to transfer photos and videos using a web browser or the desktop app. To use the desktop app, be sure to also install the Photo Transfer App on your mobile devices.
- Camera+ ($2.99 at iTunes) — Camera + is one of the best photo-editing apps for smartphone users. Use this app for one-tap automatic retouching with filter and processing effects that instantly improve photos and put professional darkroom features directly at your fingertips. It offers multiple shooting modes, greater exposure control, a “lab” with advanced editing features and a user-friendly interface, along with direct sharing to your favorite social media outlets.
- Snapseed (free at iTunes, Google Play) — Snapseed is a basic editing app for your smartphone that offers a host of ways to manipulate photos. With user-friendly swipe motions for easy editing and a comparison feature to view edits side by side with the original image, this app provides the essential photo-editing tools for photographers of all levels. A “selective adjust” capability tweaks brightness, contrast and saturation on selected areas of an image.
- Cinemagram (free at iTunes, Google Play) — Be your own movie director using Cinemagram. The mobile app uses moving photos to produce short videos (several seconds) from which you select the images to receive unique visual treatments. The resulting animation is a hybrid half-video/half-photo, which can be stylized with various filters and special effects and instantly shared as a GIF or video to social media platforms.
- Picasa (free for Mac and PC users) – Manage and edit photos from your phone on your desktop using Picasa, a Google product. In addition to creating slideshows and organizing photo files, Picasa provides basic editing tools for the average user. Since Picasa is a Google product, the Mac and PR program lets you share photos on your Google+ profile.
- Pixlr (free for desktop users) – Ready to take your photo editing skills to the next level? Check out Pixlr, a powerful online photo editor that is free for desktop users. Pixlr boasts many of the features users would experience with Adobe Photoshop, such as masks and layers styles, curve and levels adjustment tools and a wide range of filters for creative effects.
- My Roll (formerly Flayvr, and free on iTunes and Google Play), which automatically organizes and groups images on your smartphone into distinct albums by events, date, time and location. Its intelligent image grouping technology applies your photo/video-taking and organizing behavior to highlight the most-relevant imagery, either in gallery or collage style — and provides options to share photos, videos or entire albums through social media, text or email.
Using your Frontier high-speed Internet connection, you can download these or other apps to add a creative or organizational touch to images captured by your smartphone.