What's Your APPtitude? Comparing iPhone Photo Apps

5 years ago
This article was written by a member of the SheKnows Community. It has not been edited, vetted or reviewed by our editorial staff, and any opinions expressed herein are the writer’s own.

Ever since I got my first iPhone my digital camera has gone unused. At first I would carry my camera along, snapping pictures and hoping I wouldn't run out of space on my SD card. I would upload the pictures to my computer and then transfer then onto disc or a flash drive to transfer to the blog, Facebook, share with family or, mostly, to linger in digital purgatory.  With my first upgrade to a smart phone it was easier to just snap pictures with my phone. They may have not been perfect but I was able to share quickly the happenings at work, could quickly load them online, share through a text and, let me be honest,  I was not running to make prints of pictures.  Present day, I've upgraded my phone and now my phone plays the role of camera. I downloaded a score of apps that were recommended by other folks more learned and photographer and I downloaded a bunch of apps that were recommended by those more learned in the ways of the Apple.

As with lots of things I have found that some apps were more helpful than others but for some reason I was (am) reluctant to delete the unused apps from my phone.  I keep thinking that one day, some day I am going to actually use all of those apps and decided that One day had finally arrived.


Picture taken with iPhone 4s. No filter, unedited picture of kid

Above is the original picture I took of The Bee. I tried different filters, text additions and frames to see which one I liked best. Thoughts on the apps follow.


A Beautiful Mess ($.99 in the app store)

The app store writes:  The photo app from A Beautiful Mess is the easiest way to make pretty photos and to share them with friends.

Several people in my Instagram stream have been going crazy over this app. With this app you can add text, doodles, and frames to your pictures and filter the look. The app comes with preloaded phrases, some I know  that I will use more than others or I can add my own text using one of the four fonts. To add an extra zing to your pictures there are doodles which include cute word bubbles, arrows (I am a sucker for the arrows), hearts and more. Extension packs can be bought to add more  for each category.


The Bee: A Beautiful Mess Speech Bubble message


This app is relatively easy to use. Upload a picture to enhance or use one of the backgrounds (an option that I did not use for his post) to create a picture with doodles and it's all set for sharing. I would probably use a photo enhanced with A Beautiful Mess on the blog (dude...arrows!)

You wil not be able to take pictures in the app. This app only allows editing in app. So snap your photo with this in mind.


WordFoto (id="mce_marker".99 in the app store)

The app store writes: You've probably heard the tired cliche about a picture being worth a thousand words. We've taken this phrase quite literally and created WordFoto, an app that turns your photos and words into amazing typographic works of art.

This app literally makes words into art. It's pretty easy to use, use one of the preloaded phrases or add your own. There are eight preset styles of fonts and colors or one can customize a font and color style to match.


Word Foto WordFoto using Romance setting


This app is easy to use and gives a cool look to your photos. It's fun to use and gives photos a unique look. Photos can be napped in the app or you can use one that is already in your camera library.


Decopic (free with opton to buy (even more) editing tools)

The app store writes: Decorate, and create KAWAII and cool photos with DECOPIC

I am not a fan of this app. The final picture looks distorted and quite frankly there were too many things to choose from. Yes, I sound like some curmudgeonly lady but honestly, after browsing through the options I was overwhelmed with how many looked alike, how many there are to scroll through and was over looking for that final filter.



Pictures can be taken in app or selected from your library. Overall this app is just too busy for my taste.


Snapseed (free)

Full disclosure: I don't think I used the app correctly so my opinion may be a bit skewed. I couldn't quite figure out what Snapseed was used for. It is an editor but too complicated for my needs. For a more advanced photographer this would probably be a useful tool. For me it was too much.





  Pictures with Words (free in the app store)

This app adds text and emoticons to photos that you are able to take sing the app or used from your camera's library. This app was a bit busy with scores of handwriting fonts and emoticons. . I thought this app was also too busy.





Text on Photo Free (there is an option to buy a full sized version for $.99)

This app provides a variety of fonts to create text on your pictures. There are so many text options, too many for my taste. I found myself worrying about what font to pick, the size, if I wanted a shadow for the text. Once I got through all of the options the app was easy to use.



Below are all of the pictures together for a side by side comparison. I used the frame app using Diptic*.



*Diptic is a frame app that costs $.99.


What say you? What are your favorite photo apps? Share please! I am always looking for more. If PicMonkey ever makes an app I would be the first to download.


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