Photospector launched worldwide on Wednesday, July 18th!

Check out the Roadmap below to see what’s coming in the next version of Photospector.

Press

We’ve gotten fantastic reviews so far, with the biggest coming from Charlie Sorrel at Cult of Mac:

“…the iPad photos app Apple should have made all along.” – Cult of Mac

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In total, we had 20 published pieces on Photospector in the first four days after launch, including international reviews in Dutch, Turkish, Czech, German, French, Portuguese and multiple in Italian!

Charlie, and a number of the reviews gave us a call to action, right in line with our plans for rapid updates and improvements to Photospector:

“I’ve called may apps “Lightroom for iPad” in the past, and I stand by all of them. But Photospector is the closest yet in that it works for organizing and editing. Like the first version of Lightroom, there’s enough here to work with, but I can see the potential for a truly great app in the future.” – Charlie Sorrel, Cult of Mac

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Raman Pfaff at iOS Photo Apps has one of the most in-depth reviews so far, with fantastic suggestions for improvements. Based on his comments, we’ve already fixed a number of bugs and added some new features (see Roadmap below).

Raman is a Lightroom user and has requested a feature where we could carry over the image adjustments from Photospector into Lightroom — a popular suggested feature. One simple solution is to just store the adjustment values into the metadata, and then require you to manually copy those values into the Lightroom controls. A more sophisticated integration would include direct transfer of the adjustments via the Lightroom sidecar files. Stay tuned!

“…navigate through thousands of images using search capabilities rather than what you will soon consider “old fashioned” manual filing.” – Nicky Sanford, PhotoCruncher

PhotoCruncher-Logo Nicky Sanford at the PhotoCruncher, a wonderful blog for iPhoneographers frequented by members of the popular Mobitog forum, liked the wipe and toggle comparison features, and particularly enjoyed the smart search features, an area that we plan to dramatically improve in future versions.

Panic!

don_t_panic_buttonWe had one critical problem at launch — the Group Editing in-app purchase didn’t work. We had not properly associated the item with the launch binary when we submitted the app for review. Anytime someone tried to buy Group Editing, the app immediately crashed! We found out about this about 90 minutes after launch, and quickly identified the problem. Within an hour we had submitted a new binary to iTunes and requested an expedited review from Apple. By 11 am the next morning (Thursday), the fixed version was live in the store — whew!

GreenEditIt is quite difficult to properly test some app behaviors. Specifically, in-app purchase items are only tested in the Sandbox, which means you cannot test the real version of your app that will ship to customers. Very frustrating! We essentially had to fix the problem “blind”, with no way to test and make sure our fixes would work. It was with great relief when, after the expedited review made it live on iTunes, that we finally downloaded and tested the real version with the real store to make sure our fix actually worked!

Roadmap

i80-caThe next update of Photospector, designed to address the critical issues revealed after launch and available in a couple of weeks, will have the following improvements:

  • PhotoStream album support.
  • Event album support with fancy thumbnail grouping.
  • Removed “splotchy” artifacts with certain adjustment combos.
  • Dynamic memory cache to improve stability.
  • Improved startup time for galleries with thousands of images.
  • Added “Edited” folder and thumbnail tags.
  • Show thumbnail during image loading instead of blue gradient.
  • Prevent crop window from ever moving offscreen.
  • RGBA & Random|Heatmap controls require long-press-to-lock.
  • Histogram display range improved to ignore outliers.
  • Stability improvements to handle corrupted local files.
  • Numerous UI tweaks and improvements based on feedback.
  • Date field selection and explicit cache flush added to Settings.

Immediately after the first update, we’ll be starting work on a few bigger features, each highly requested, added as additional in-app purchase items:

  • Clarity. Real-time unsharpened mask adjustment.
  • Shadows, midtones and highlights real-time controls.
  • Support for RAW photos with non-destructible editing.
  • Load photos via Dropbox, Flickr, and Facebook cloud albums.

Once these features are complete, we’ll move on to the iPhone and Android ports of Photospector. OSX is also high on the porting list. Once the ports are done, we’ll be exploring deeper Lightroom integration and desktop transfer features. Our top-requested feature, App Tracking, needs a bit more research before we can commit to a schedule, but we hope to include it with updates to the keyword tracking interface.

Our development schedule will be driven by the feedback we get from reviews and email. Please email us and let us know what you would like to see in the next version of Photospector!