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iOS 8 changes we'd like to see: Photos and Camera

Serenity Caldwell | May 22, 2014
Apple has focused heavily on iOS camera features since the iPhone 3GS brought tap-to-focus and video modes to the masses. But in some respects, iOS 7 still leaves us wanting when it comes to the Camera and Photos apps, as well as Photo Stream.

Apple has focused heavily on iOS camera features since the iPhone 3GS brought tap-to-focus and video modes to the masses. But in some respects, iOS 7 still leaves us wanting when it comes to the Camera and Photos apps, as well as Photo Stream.

With WWDC and a likely iOS 8 announcement on the way, the Macworld staff, with the help of our Twitter followers, have been putting together lists of changes and new features we'd like to see in the next major version of iOS 8. Today, we cover photo features.

It's worth noting that Apple often ties its coolest new camera features to the latest and greatest iPhone hardware (120 FPS slow-motion mode in the iPhone 5s, for example), so WWDC may not reveal everything image-related that the company has up its sleeve. That said, there's still plenty for Apple to improve on in software for current hardware.

Combine the Camera and Photos apps

Now that the Camera app has an easy shortcut on the lock screen and in Control Center, having a separate app icon for browsing your photos seems like superfluous. Plenty of third-party apps have shooting modes amidst their photo libraries — why not Apple's? It would be easy enough to add a tab to Photos called "Camera," and doubly easy to change the Camera Roll shortcut in the Camera app so that it brings up your Camera Roll album within the rest of the current Photos interface.

Such a change would bring other aspects of the Photos app — like Shared Photo Streams — back to the forefront. Apple's photo-sharing feature is a great little tool, but I don't use it as often as I should, in part because its album creation is buried within the Photos app, and most of the image interaction I do is in the Camera app.

Given Apple's fascination with keeping separate apps for things like Messages, FaceTime, Contacts, and Phone, I'm skeptical this will come to pass, but I'm putting it on my list regardless.

Let us organize screenshots, please and thank you

Yes, this may be primarily a tech journalist's plea — it's on MacStories's wishlist, and we've all been talking about it for what seems like years — but it's not an unreasonable request. Apple has already begun creating smart folders in the Photos app for things like panoramas, videos, and third-party apps; why not make one for screenshots? The company doesn't even need to add identifiable metadata, as it already has image differentiation: iOS screenshots are saved as PNGs, while images from your camera are saved as JPGs.

Improve Photo Stream backup

 

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