Google brings non-destructive editing to Android

I’ve been a diehard Snapseed user since the app’s debut, but I’ve always wished it were more flexible, letting me go back & change my mind about edits. Thus I’m delighted that my new teammates have just released a powerful, Snapseed-inspired mobile editor. Todd Kennedy lists the key enhancements:

Non-destructive photo editing across devices
Starting today you can start your edits on one device, and continue (or start over) on another. This means you can backup full-resolution photos from your desktop, edit them in seconds on your phone, then add some finishing touches from your tablet. (And you can revert to your originals at any time!) The technical term for this experience is non-destructive editing in the cloud, and we think you’ll really enjoy it.

Brand new filters and creative tools
Now when you edit your photos, you’ll have a powerful set of tools (like crop and rotate), 1-touch filters, and Snapseed-inspired enhancements (like Drama, Retrolux, and HDR Scape). Mix and match to make your photos look their absolute best.

A single view of all your photos
The new ‘All’ view displays your entire photo library — whether it’s on your current device, or backed up in the cloud. If your library is really large (> 10s of thousands of photos), the app won’t show all your photos initially. But stay tuned, because we’re supporting larger and larger libraries over the next few weeks.

An easy way to browse your photos by date
In addition to search, there’s now another way to find your photos fast. Just swipe through your photos in the ‘All’ view, and look for the scroll bar on the right. Dragging the scroll bar up or down will quickly move you forwards or backwards in time.

As Bill & Ted might say, “Great things are afoot at the Big G…”

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3 thoughts on “Google brings non-destructive editing to Android

  1. It’s interesting to read the comments (now more than 60) posted in response to the notes from Todd (Kennedy). Altogether there’s a lot of confusion (plus several suggestions for the on-going development efforts). It seems there’s also a general suspicion that Picasa is now doomed …
    Obviously the user base for the sort of features that this platform offers is very different from the Photoshop crowd; maybe so for Elements folks also. But, as nice as it would be to believe that online-linked photo-editing all can and will get much better, there is also a suspicion that toolkits will continue to appear, even multiply, but then (again) disappear. For example, there were lots of non-Photoshop folks who really liked the original release of Picnik (what happened later is here: And now there must be at least a dozen “replacement” offerings (including:,, etc.).
    Maybe, overall, Aviary represents the best reality check. The founder-folk there are now in a third-and-a-half iteration of their adventure – and the online editor which they assembled, and subsumed the Phoenix, Peacock, Toucan, etc. modules under the Aviary moniker, was closed-down in favor of this:

    [Yes, I am certainly inheriting a rich history. 😉 Lots of very large, often vocal constituencies to consider. —J.]

    1. hi John,
      Yep, surely ’tis certainly so.
      Though this: isn’t as yet an “in-the-cloud” editor, it’s an interesting project plus app (coming soon also to Android).
      I tried to figure-out from the resulting, but still quite small, Fotolia collection (here: just what the photographers/iPhoneographers – who, after all, want to sell their work – did as actual edits using the app. Aside from cropping, which comes with the Fotolia app itself (and of course isn’t visible), there’s not much to be found that was clearly done in some other app. (Panoramas done in-camera are actually disproportionately popular as actual purchased downloads from Fotolia itself.) But it’s noteworthy that prospective contributors get some discouragement along the way: “And remember, the more you modify your image, the less likely it is to sell, so go easy on the filtering and fake blurs a la Instagram” says M. Fotolia.
      Maybe they should have invested in an web-based editor for the purchasers …

      [Interesting stuff, John—thanks (as always) for the links. —J.]

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