All good things…
The old flickr mobile app was little more than a portal to their online presence. Their brand new iPhone app is a big step up in photo-sharing apps, plus you get a ready-made fully-functional online platform thrown in for good measure with around 80 million users for you to make friends with. And it’s a major bridge between the mobile and the big camera worlds. As I said recently, the distinctions between the two worlds are - like adding a neat retro filter - gradually blurring.
Here are the best bits about the new app:
- Full res uploads, that’s ALL the pixels from the original image. When people are printing their pictures for exhibitions or books, this matters. It also means people don’t have to worry about backing up. Once uploaded to the flickr servers, they have a full-res backup.
- A pretty cool new way of browsing your feed. You go down to see who’s posted and then across to see the photos they posted.
- And that’s useful because most flickr users post various photos at once. The mobile app also allows you to post more than one photo at a time.
- It allows you to edit (yes, change brightness, contrast, etc. like a mini-editing suite) and add different filters to your photo (or to multiple photos) before you post.
- When posting, you can add tags, but you can also add the photos to your existing flickr sets or groups. You can also add photos to sets or groups after you’ve posted just in case you forgot at the time.
- With the magazine-style display, actual photos are given the best real-estate on the tiny iPhone screen. But if you really want to see the 100 tags on a photo, tap the i button and it flips and gives you them, along with other big camera meta-data. Tap the photo and you see it full screen, where you can also pinch and zoom.
- Like other photo-sharing apps, it gives you an activity, or news, stream, which includes not only favourites and comments, but also invitations to join groups. You can turn notifications on or off. You can also turn off the filters, if you’re a purist.
So it’s a pretty sophisticated app, with some good filters and features. But the significant thing is that flickr, which is a serious photography community, is opening its arms to mobile, saying, hey you guys, we love the stuff you’re doing, come on in, we’re all part of one big happy family. Before I even knew about this app, I said that Instagram might never have happened if flickr had launched a good mobile photo-sharing app two years earlier. They took their time, but all good things - and it has a lot of them - come to she who waits.
She waited and, hey, all the pixels are still there! (featuring my good friend Jo Cope)