Photoshop for Android replacement coming from Google?
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Published on May 27, 2015
While Adobe has announced they will no longer be supporting Photoshop Touch for Android, Google is launching a dedicated Photos service. The new Google Photos will be separate from Google Plus, will run on the Android platform, and supports many features found in the now discontinued Photoshop Touch along with a host of new capabilities.
One of the biggest enhancements found in the new Google Photos is the automatic grouping and organization of images. The app goes well beyond being able to browse and organize by date or location. New functionality can automatically organize photos into categories for People as well as Things. The things category may sound odd, but the app can detect objects such as lakes, dogs, and skylines, then group similar content together. While Photoshop has Bridge, and Photoshop Elements can detect faces, there is no similar auto detect option on any of the Adobe digital imaging tools. This capability leapfrogs any type of organizational function built into the various Photoshop apps. It appears that the former Adobe Photoshop product manager is having an impact in his role at Google.
Of course photo retouching and editing functions exist. These include automatic enhancements as well as capabilities for brightening, adjusting contrast, and otherwise improving images. For images that are too large or need straightening, the new Google Photos also includes a comprehensive cropping tool as well, with capabilities that are similar to those found in Photoshop. As a mobile app, the focus remains on being easy to use, and we don't expect users will need the level of training found in Photoshop courses in order to gain the skills to use the new app.
For those wanting to create special effects with images, there are functions for creating albums from multiple images, as well as building animations, and even a collage function for assembling several photos together.
While the Google Plus attachment may have ended, the Photos app does include capabilities for sharing and also offers a number of privacy controls as well. We expect that full details for this app will be announced at Google IO, and believe a web-based version of it may include much or all of the same functionality. If so, this will allow iOS users on an iPad or iPhone access to the same photo editing functionality.
About the author
Jennifer Smith is a user experience designer, Photoshop expert, educator and author based in Boston. She is the author of more than 20 books on design tools and processes, including Adobe Creative Cloud for Dummies, Adobe Creative Cloud Digital Classroom, and Photoshop Digital Classroom. She has been awarded a Microsoft MVP three times for her work with user experience design in creating apps for touch, desktop, and mobile devices.
Jennifer delivers UX training and UX consulting for large Fortune 100 companies, small start-ups, and independent software vendors. She has been hired by Adobe and Microsoft to deliver training workshops to their staff, and has traveled to Asia, Europe, India, the Middle East, and across the U.S. to deliver courses and assist on UX design projects. She has extensive knowledge of modern Windows UX Design, having worked closely with the Windows team to create educational material and deliver UX workshops to key partners globally on behalf of Microsoft. Jennifer works with a wide range of prototyping tools including Fireworks, Photoshop, Illustrator, Blend for Visual Studio, and Balsamiq.