Improve smartphone photos with native editing tools (gallery)

Improve smartphone photos with native editing tools (gallery)

Summary: Smartphones today take good quality photos, but you can make them even better with a little editing. This gallery shows the available tools for Android, BlackBerry 10, Windows Phone, and iOS.


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  • Android: Viewing a photo, getting ready to edit

    Most people take photos with their smartphones and then share them on social networking sites or via email. I rarely see anyone print photos and thus just about every high end smartphone camera is just fine for the majority of people. In this post and image gallery, I take a look at the integrated photo editors found on the HTC One, BlackBerry Z10, Nokia Lumia 920, and Apple iPhone 5.

    You will find native photo editing tools on all these newest smartphone platforms, but they don't appear as apps. These tools can improve the quality and look of photos you take. It is also fun to add customizations to your photos. To access these editing tools you first need to go into the device's gallery area and open up a photo. An option to edit a photo will be your gateway to these various editing tools.

    I personally liked using the BlackBerry 10 and Nokia Creative Studio utilities the best as they gave me a mix of the essentials with some slick enhancement tools.

    HTC One Android smartphone

    The editing clients for all the other platforms is the same out of the box. However, on your Android smartphone the manufacturer has flexibility to provide a different native editing tool so the tools available on HTC will be different than what you find on Samung, LG, Motorola, and others.

    The screenshots in this post were captured from the HTC One so the native tool has an HTC origin. You will even find that this tool differs from other HTC devices so with Android there is no consistent, cross-device experience.

    After opening up a photo, tap the Edit button to access the HTC editor. At the bottom of the display you will find four icons that allow you to access Effects, Frames, Retouch, and Transform.

    The Effects tool gives you filtering options similar to what you might find on Instagram. You can select from a number of effects and when you tap on an option you will see a preview of that appear as the photo changes. I personally don't use this tool much.

    The Frames lets you customize the border of the photo with options such as wooden, airmail, grunge, and montage. These can be fun at times and I have edited photos using this tool.

    When you tap on Retouch several options will appear, giving you a Photoshop Lite experience. The available tools actually are a bit dynamic too and will change depending on the photo you are viewing. For example, if someone photo bombed you then an option to remove that person may appear. Unfortunately, there is not much manual control over this option.

    Tools available to you with Retouch include skin smoothing, lighting, face contour, eye enhancer, red eye removal, eye brightening, and anti-shine. As you can see most of these are focused on adjusting photos of people.

    The last available tool is called Transform and allows you the ability to rotate, crop, flip, and straighten your photo.

    The new Galaxy S4 has even more options for editing so open up a photo on your smartphone and check out the powerful editing tool in your hand.

  • Android: Select options from the bottom toolbar

    Frames lets you customize the border of the photo with options such as wooden, airmail, grunge, and montage. These can be fun at times and I have edited photos using this tool.

Topics: Mobility, Android, iOS, iPhone, BlackBerry, Smartphones, Windows Phone

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  • Huh?

    I don't understand the point of this article. It seems to only apply to people who own the HTC One for which there aren't that many. I wish the author would amend the title to attract HTC One owners so that people like me don't waste their time.
    • You have to read

      The whole article.