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What Apple’s new Photo features mean for photo and film apps

By Guest Author Michael Kelley

With each new iteration of Apple’s iOS, the company updates existing features and adds new ones to take advantage of the technology in their new round of iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches. One of the biggest updates of note is the improvement of Apple’s Photo app.

In iOS 13, scheduled for release this fall, Photos will offer a slew of new on-screen and in-app editing features, virtually eliminating the need to use any other app.  Or, at least, that’s what the company would have you believe.

To whom is the iOS 13 Photo app targeted?

With the enhancements made to the iOS 13 Photos app, Apple may be attempting to capture a larger segment of the photo and film apps market. While the company still wants to appeal to the everyday user or photo and video enthusiast, Apple also apparently wants to reel in professional photographers and filmmakers. Ideally, the company would like that group of professionals to use its app instead of the more industry-oriented apps like Photoshop. 

Should iOS app developers worry about Apple’s attempt to monopolize the photo and film app marketplace? That’s a hard question to answer. But no matter what, photo and film iOS app developers will definitely need to update their third-party apps to compete with Apple.

Professional photographers and filmmakers

Unlike the enthusiast or amateur photographer and filmmaker, professionals have a specific set of parameters they look for in an app. And, most likely, professionals who are going out on a shoot are taking a DSLR or video camera with them in addition to their smartphone.

There are several apps created by iOS app developers to meet the needs of these professionals, such as photo editing apps to apps designed to help photographers select lenses or use their phone as a light meter. Apple has thought about these elements and incorporated them into Photos in iOS 13. But will professional photographers and filmmakers see it as a worthy alternative to what they are already using and switch to it?

Features of iOS 13’s new Photos app

The development used to bring iOS 13 to fruition is a big step forward for Apple over what was offered in iOS 12. In the current operating system, basic editing functions and lighting functions are present. However, with the upcoming version of Apple’s mobile operating system, the company has tried to leave no stone unturned when it comes to taking photos or shooting video. Chances are they looked at what was out there in the market and tried to bring those pieces to its own app. Here are some of the main features.

  • Use of machine learning to avoid duplicate photos or junk that may be clogging up the storage on your phone or tablet.

  • Different size thumbnails for videos and photos with an auto play feature for videos.

  • Built-in video and photo editing functions are added on to the current set of editing tools like vibrancy, white-balance, definition, vignette, and noise-reduction. For the first time, a user will be able to rotate videos.

  • The newest function is a Portrait Lighting feature dubbed High-Key Mono, which uses depth mapping to simulate studio lighting and gives the sensation of either being closer or farther away from your subject.

Other than checking email, texting, and, of course, phone calls, the use of iPhones for filming video and taking photos is one of the things they’re used for the most. Apple obviously recognizes this and has beefed up its own Photos app. The company may or may not have taken into account the larger number of apps already available for photographers and filmmakers. Either way, iOS 13 with its new Photos app could be a game-changer and probably will influence iOS app development of photo and film apps for years to come.

Steve Sande
the authorSteve Sande
Steve is the founder and former publisher of Apple World Today and has authored a number of books about Apple products. He's an avid photographer, an FAA-licensed drone pilot, and a really bad guitarist. Steve and his wife Barb love to travel everywhere!