Photography apps come and go, but only a slim handful have the stuff it takes to become powerhouses. PhotoSoft FX & Photo Editor, newly released from Overam, finds itself in the same company with the Instagrams and Pixlr-o-matics of the world in that it can take boring smartphone snapshots and turn them into something that anyone could confuse for professional.
PhotoSoft’s opening punch is evident right from the get-go: real time snapshot effects that come in the form of adjustable filters, frames, overlays and resizable stickers for on-the-spot creativity without the need to perform any post edits. You can also import existing images from any of your smartphone galleries straight into the PhotoSoft editor.
Once you’ve chosen the image you’d like to fiddle with, a bottom row of controls appears. These include Edit, FX, Artistic, Overlay, Frames, Sticker and Quotes. Edit gives you all the standard controls you’d expect, like crop, contrast, brightness, exposure and rotate. There are additional options such as HD Boost, which sharpens up soft-edged images; ColorSplash, which lets you adjust the image’s opacity; and AWB, which automatically adjusts the image’s white balance.
The FX option opens up an array of adjustable filters that put almost everything you’ve seen on Instagram to shame. Choosing the Artistic option gives you five categories of sketch effects, also all adjustable. Stickers and Quotes options reveal a mix and match collection of silly and kitschy (but oddly effective) overlays.
More creative texture controls are available in the Overlays menu. This is the point in the app where you unlock the in-app purchase portion. While overlays like Grunge and Bokeh are free to download, others with names like Vogue and Amor require “coins.” Coins can either be purchased or earned – 100 coins costs $.99 and you can run up the spending scale all the way to 1300 coins, which will cost you just under $10. Earning said coins happens in frustratingly small increments. Following PhotoSoft on Instagram will earn you 50 coins. By watching a short promotional video for other related apps, you can earn 10 coins, but there’s a limit to how many times you can exercise that shortcut.
For the instant gratification oriented, PhotoSoft offers a randomize button that’ll take your image and pretty it up into something you might not have imagined possible. You can also tap and hold a button which lets you toggle back to the original image to compare your artistic progress. An undo icon returns the image to its original rendering.
According to the app listing on Google Play, new and improved editing tools like motion and zoom blur are on the way and may have made it there already by the time you read this. Overall, this is an impressive little app with tons of potential and enough options to keep you busy for hours adding effects, saving the final product to the app gallery, and sharing them via any method you desire.
PhotoSoft FX & Photo Editor requires Android 4.0 and up and is available now as a free download from Google Play. You can pay $1.49 for PhotoSoft Photo Editor Pro, which removes ads but offers no additional functionality.