Review: Photoshop Touch

Adobe | 35 MB | $ 4.99

Photoshop has always been a very powerful tool for just about any photographer anywhere. Although there are some strong alternatives to the multi-hundred dollar Adobe creation, none of them never really stood out as a true replacement for me. Adobe had already had a Photoshop Express available for the iPhone for quite a while now. However, a true Photoshop app hasn’t hit the store. That is, until recently.  


Adobe had the challenge of creating an application that would take the major tools that their desktop counterpart had and port them over to the less-powerful, smaller screen. The result, well, they were able to take the majority of the features in their desktop app and bring them over to the iPhone’s screen perfectly. The app runs great on the lesser resources as well.

Instead of going through every feature of Photoshop Touch, I’m going to go through the main sets that Photoshop offers users. First, comes layers. Unlike the Express version, which was built for quick, dirty edits, Touch allows you to create fully with Photoshop. The use of layers allows you to create projects like you would in the actual desktop counterpart.


Of course, the quick adjustments aren’t entirely lost. These are the main features I personally used Photoshop for with my own photography with my iPod Touch. The full mobile version allows a few more adjustments over Photoshop Express. These additional adjustments allow better toning and correcting of any photo.


Outside that, we have our regular filters that Photoshop is known for. These are little fun things that I’ve played with on the full desktop version. Photoshop Touch includes quite a few filters for you to use and sink your hands into. They are further separated out into 4 categories: basic, stylize, artistic, and photo.


Brushes and selection tools are also included for you to use. This allows you to pinpoint exactly what will get edited. Rather than applying to the entire image, you can have certain things go towards a specific area. Brushes and stamps also allow you to draw or write at your will. These would be your main tools if you plan to do anything from scratch.


Editing your selections is also a very important aspect to Photoshop as a whole. Luckily, Adobe has also included these features into Photoshop Touch. The app allows you to do much of the selection manipulation you’d do on the desktop. It’s not all there, but definitely more than ample on the go.


Now for something that the current Photoshop doesn’t do for you (if it can, I’ve yet to use the feature), share. Photoshop Touch has the ability to send your photos straight to Facebook or Twitter using iOS’s built-in social integration. It’s a nice addition, but not entirely necessary.


Features: ★★★★


Being a graphics tool, the graphics are expected to be fine. That said, the images, textures, and gradients used to create the interface are perfectly fine. The other side of the graphical interface may not be though. Although adjusting your pictures, and the main interface is pretty much what you’d expect: sliders, pinches, buttons, etc, the rest isn’t.


Menus are a little hard to traverse. Heck, I had to learn how to save a picture to the camera roll. The app has quite a learning curve to it. I still haven’t learned how to name my projects. I really don’t like the idea of having everything called Untitled.


Graphics: ★★★★


In terms of reusability, Photoshop Touch is really an app that anyone that has the desktop version should have on hand. It allows you to do a lot of the editing you’d do on the go. It’s also really nice as it can let you export your projects in the standard PSD format so you’d be able to edit it on the desktop program as well. The real only drawback is the interface that could use a little sprucing up.

Reuse: ★★★★½


Adobe has priced this program at over 1/100 the price of the desktop version. It’s 5 bucks, and compared to the desktop version, it might look like a steal. Well, it offers a fraction of what the desktop counterpart does as well. Comparing it to other editors on the App Store, not many allow you to export to continue editing on the desktop, so that’s a huge plus. Photoshop Touch also has many more features when stacked against the competition. If you’re after simple edits though, this may seem like a complete rip off. The interface may also draw you away until you finish learning it completely.

Value: ★★★★½

Final Thoughts

I have to admit, Adobe actually did do a good job brining the power of many Photoshop tools over to the iOS platform. So kudos to them on that feat. I do wish they would fix up the little interface they have going right now. If you’re looking for a Photoshop away from the computer, this will be the closest thing to it; it’s called Photoshop (Touch) after all.

Overall Score


Photoshop Touch

† All prices are in US currency.
This review was written by the Review Team. Cumulative scores are rounded to the nearest half or full star.
All accessories, applications, themes, tweaks, or other products were purchased by iFans at their respective prices unless stated otherwise.
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