What is the Best Android Camera App in 2013?
Revisited Update: I now use Instagram but often use some of the apps mentioned below for editing before posting.
Check out all of my amazing photos here.
I edit with Google Snapseed which is purely the BEST editing app for a phone I have ever come across.
Read this if you’re worried about the new Instagram Privacy Rules.
My attempt at Instagram for Android below.
These are my sample pictures I took with HDR Camera and edited with Android Photo Apps such as Pixlr-o-matic, BeFunky and Photoshop Express.
But let it be known I have a really janky digital camera on my phone.
I use the Samsung Galaxy Indulge with a 3 Megapixel Digital Camera.
Best Android Camera App
Well Really there are only two must have Camera Apps for the Android Phone. Luckily for you they are on the Android Marketplace and you can download them for free from the Android Market Place. Or Google Play? It looks like they changed the name a few days ago.
I'll be nice and include a few extra apps that can be handy for you Android camera phone photographers. While I'm at it I will tell you what did not work and what to avoid.
Just make sure your phone is ready for all of your images! You don't want to run out of memory and go through the image deletion game to free up space. It doesn't get better than this amazing deal.
So with the iPhone becoming so popular and the Facebook Instagram phase going on you get flooded with pictures from your friends all containing the same effects but just another angle and another day.
With the Droid you can do that too but better! It takes a little more effort but it's you being creative and not just pressing the button.
Let's show those iPhone users! Instagram for Android! Or better.
Since I have released this article an Instagram version has come out for Android and I have downloaded and installed it. I am not a fan. I do not like being forced to crop my photos and I do not want to be part of some new online network. Facebook is enough.
Here is a sunrise photo taken with HDR Camera but no post editing.
This picture was taken with HDR Camera and edited with Pixlr-o-matic.
Here is the same picture from HDR Camera edited with Instagram for Android.
What I hate about Instagram is it forces you to crop your photos into a square cutting out the composition you originally had in mind.
One more Instagram photo.
I don't always Instagram my food, but when I do it's because my left arm is tingling.
Again all photos no mater what editing app were taken with HDR Camera for Android then processed with Pixlr-o-matic, BeFunky, Photoshop Express or Instagram.
HDR Android Camera
Yup that's it, one simple app. This app takes some of my favorite camera phone pictures.
It's easy to use and never fails me.
This app takes HDR Photos. Yes, HDR Cell Phone Pics!
However the free app contains annoying ads and takes up your time. I suggest the Pro version HDR Camera+ since it's so cheap and very worth it. Best Photo App there is.
How HDR works:
HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. It takes 3 photos, one at normal exposure, one a stop under and one a stop above. So it takes the normal, under and over exposure and merges them together getting all the details from shadows to highlights making up an HDR Photo.
These photos are clear, sharp and crisp. The app itself lets you adjust the amount of exposure, color vividness, contrast and micro contrast on each photo before saving it so you can play around. It also comes with some handy presets. I think this may only be for Android Phones since it is in the Droid Marketplace under HDR Camera but I can't seem to find this app on iPhone.
Sharp, vivid, high contrast photos.
Large file size.
Able to edit before saving.
Takes 3 photos so you have to hold still.
Slower than taking a single flat photo.
Photos taken with HDR Camera:
Again I think this is the best camera app for Droid.
It's a great start for pictures and then if you want to get creative and edit keep on reading because I will post some other apps and edits below.
Problem with that is each photo takes 3 shots, time and holding still. If you just want a janky old flat image you can use the built in Android Camera App or what I use is FXCamera because I like the ToyCam option.
The following pictures were taken with FX Camera and Toycam.
HDR Camera and Photoshop Express
This next set of photos were all taken with HDR Camera and then edited in Photoshop. One thing to note about Photoshop it is has a huge lack of borders if you want to add a border. But Photoshop Mobile or Express is great for editing the saturation and contrast which I am a fan of as you can see.
Looking out from the Alameda Bridge over the Oakland Estuary.
Taken with HDR Camera and edited with Photoshop Express.
Downtown Oakland on May Day, May 1st 2012 during the Occupy Oakland General Strike.
HDR Camera and Pixlr-o-matic
Another HDR+ with editing in Photoshop Express then final touches with Pixlr-o-matic.
More HDR+ with Photoshop Express and Pixlr-o-matic.
This one may be just HDR Camera and Pixlr-o-matic. it has some neat effects.
Best Photo Editing Apps for Droid?
When it comes to photo editing you immediately think of Photoshop. PS Express is a great app and I may use it the most but the lack of borders is a bit disappointing.
However there are other apps out there that make editing even easier.
I personally use BeFunky Pro and Pixlr-o-matic.
This next set of photos was all taken in HDR Camera and then edited in Photoshop, Pixlr-o-matic and BeFunky Pro.
I can't decide which I like more. Can you?
Taken w/ HDR Camera and edited in Photoshop Express.
Good editing, saturation, contrast, hues, etc but a lack of border options.
Taken w/ HDR Camera and edited with Pixlr-o-matic.
I really like how this one came out and maybe looks most like an Instagram pic from an Android.
Taken w/ HDR Camera and edited with BeFunky Pro.
I suggest that if you only get one photo editing application you try Pixlr-o-matic. But I guess in all reality you should try all 3 of the free versions and see what you like the most. The best combo is taking the photo with HDR Camera then using Photoshop Express for editing and one of the other 2 for final touches and borders.
I'll let you vote on which you like the best.
Worst Android Camera Apps?
A lot of people like Camera 360 but that thing has never worked for me. It just crashes almost every single time and I end up having to take my battery out and reinsert it in order to get my Droid Camera Phone to work again. If it works for you, great it looks like it could be a good camera app but as for me it is frustrating garbage.
Another crasher is Cartoon Camera. It's got some cool effects and ideas but if it's going to freeze my Droid every time then what is it worth? Nothing. Another uninstalled waste of time.
In conclusion you're just going to have to get down on it and play around.
I recommend HDR Camera, Photoshop Express and Pixlr-o-matic or BeFunky.