As Android devices become faster and more capable computer-replacements, we’re expecting them to do things our traditional computers do, like photo editing. While Google provides a bit of support for effects on your pictures, and many OEMs provide some basic photo editing functionality in their software, sometimes it’s not quite enough, especially if you’re used to more in-depth editing on your desktop. That’s where this guide comes in; we’re going to list some of the best photo editing apps available for that supercomputer in your pocket.
PicSay Pro is a very powerful, easy to use photo editor. It’s got all the traditional touch-up effects and tools you’re used to, like adjusting the exposure and contrast, cropping and straightening, and red-eye removal. It also has a large selection of fun effects to use, including some fancy frames and filters that give Instagram a run for its money. PicSay’s biggest selling point, though, is its large catalog of stickers and text bubbles to add a bit of humor to your pictures. Do you think your dog needs a new hat and a mustache? PicSay has you covered. Want to try to portray your artistic side as a comic book superhero, complete with action sounds and dialog? PicSay won’t judge. And for the social media enthusiasts out there, PicSay also provides options for exporting edited pictures directly to Facebook, Twitter, or even Instagram, on top of the standard
If you’re looking for a versatile editor for serious and playful use, it’s hard to beat PicSay. They offer a free version with fewer effects and adjustments to see if you think the app is worth the $3.99, but if you give a shot, I’m sure you’ll think it is.
PicsArt is Android’s self-proclaimed #1 photo app. While that’s debatable, it’s hard not to argue that PicsArt is a fantastic, easy to use application for touching up a few of your photos and adding a few effects here and there. Compared to PicSay Pro, it doesn’t quite have as many wacky hats,fonts and effects to stick on your photos, but it makes up for that by offering a few features that you won’t find in any other photo editing app. The app even has a built-in live wallpaper with some pretty entertaining squiggly lines. Does it make the application better at editing photos? No. But it’s certainly a lot of fun, and PicsArt strives to make editing your photos fun.
The interface gets a thumbs up for a simple, clean, and intuitive design. Applying effects and stickers is easy to figure out; no need for complicated tutorials and thumbing through the app to try to do something simple. The developers also offer several extra plug-ins and effects that you can download straight from the Play Store to integrate into PicsArt.
To top it off, PicsArt also has it’s own pseudo-social-media service built into the app, so you can share your photos with others and search for popular and interesting images, whether for entertainment or your next great mobile masterpiece. Most impressively, this feature-rich application is free on the Play Store. If nothing else, it’s worth trying out for a few days to see if it could be your go to editing app.
A relatively new application on Android, Snapseed was an extraordinarily praised photo editor on Apple’s App Store that was just recently bought up by Google and released in the Play Store. An app that received Technical Image Press Association’s 2012 Best Mobile Photo App award hardly needs to be hyped up, but we’re going to go into some of the nifty little things Snapseed can do.
The biggest draw to Snapseed is its fantastic interface. All of the image enhancements work by swiping gestures, which is a great way to fine-tune adjustments and is extremely easy to get used to. Sliding your finger up and down changes the type of adjustment you’re making to the photo, and sliding left and right applies the effect on a -100 to 100 scale, with far left being -100 and far right being 100. This makes those precision edits much easier to apply. And speaking of those effects and adjustments, Snapseed has a ton of different tools you can use to edit your photos to perfection. From adjusting the focus point of a photo to fine-tuning that perfect blur effect, Snapseed can do it all. It even offers a few different frames and filters for finishing touches.
Snapseed can’t quite match the humorous effects you can get from other editors like PicSay, but it more than makes up for it with it’s in-depth, powerful photo editing abilities. It also offers one-touch sharing to Google+. For a free app, you can’t go wrong with Snapseed.
It’s hard to get all the power of a desktop photo editing program stuffed into a mobile application for tablets. While Adobe didn’t completely recreate Photoshop for Android devices, they got extremely close and managed to nail most of the powerful features you’re used to in a well-designed, polished application. Many popular features from the desktop version of Photoshop made it into the mobile app, including different filters and layers, as well as a ton of essential tools that help to really push photo editing to the next level. It’s also designed to be used with a finger, instead of the traditional mouse and keyboard. That sounds like it should be a given, but it really does add an element of polish to the app.
Now, for the drawbacks of the app. First off, the price tag on Photoshop Touch is pretty steep compared to most apps. It’ll run you $10 to get this fantastic photo editor loaded on your tablet. Oh, and there’s the second drawback here; there’s no phone version of the application. It’s not a huge deal, because Adobe was clearly trying to recreate a mobile version of their program, and they would’ve had to sacrifice some features to crunch it onto a smaller screen. (Although it’d be nice to see them accommodate some of the bigger phones we’re seeing lately.)
Originally, PhotoShop Touch launched with some painful limits on the size of your pictures you could import into the app. Fortunately, they’ve upped that limit to accommodate up to a 12 megapixel shot, so it should be more than enough for most users’ editing needs. If you’re looking for a very in-depth, powerful editor for your tablet, or if you’ve already got some Photoshop experience, PS Touch is a worthwhile investment. There’s no other alternative that gets as close to the real thing as this application does. If you just need a quick editor for your phone, this isn’t your app.
Play Store Download Link (Tablets only)