Facebook Camera: New iOS Stand-alone Camera App [REVIEW]


Facebook Camera: New iOS Stand-alone Camera App [REVIEW]

As if Facebook’s recent $1B purchase of phenomenal camera app Instagram isn’t enough, here comes Facebook Camera.

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And you thought Facebook Messages wasn’t necessary! Or even Facebook Pages!

This must be the trend right now — disintegration. Specialized apps spun from other apps. Not so long ago, social networks and even search engines are at each other’s throats trying to be the “ultimate launchpad” for every Internet user.

“Step right here folks! Photos, videos, music, blogs, news! We have it all! We can do it all! In just one app! ”

Now, it looks like everyone but the clueless in Social Networklandia is avoiding “integration” like the plague.

Why this sudden flip? Don’t ask me. I’m not the one who bought Instagram and launched a separate camera app soon after. Maybe all these separate Facebook apps are actually betas — just waiting for the right time to reintegrate with its Mother Monster. All in due time, my little apps.. All in due time! *evil laugh*

So anyway, since Facebook Camera is here I see no reason why we shouldn’t take it out for a spin.

Here’s a quick review of Facebook Camera — the-sort-of-but-not-quite-Instagram-for-Facebook:

What it is:
1. It’s your Facebook Photos stream high-jacked into a separate world via an app.

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2. It’s a batch uploader for your existing local gallery. This is a major improvement mind you. This hasn’t been possible using the native Facebook app. Prior to this app’s release, batch photo uploads have only been possible using 3rd party apps.

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3. It uploads batches incredibly faster than the native Facebook app ever does with just ONE photo.

4. It’s a camera app with sensibly-named “filters” that attempts to beautify your photos.

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4. It allows simple editing like crop and rotate. And delete!

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Tap and hold photo to easily delete it.

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5. Like I said, it’s your same photo stream on Facebook only better because this app aggregates purely photos from your Facebook stream (no whiny, emo, funny or politically-flavored status messages or SocialCam video views alerts).

So that “Like”, “Comment” and “Tag” buttons you’ve come to love (or hate) were carried to the Facebook Camera app.

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What it isn’t:
1. It’s not (yet) as beautiful as Instagram.
2. It’s not painfully slow in displaying and uploading photos.
3. It’s not capable of displaying photos in landscape orientation.
4. It’s not overly user-friendly. The UI may look easy enough to use but the “tap twice for full screen view” and “tap thrice for stream view” gestures prove to be a bit tedious (unless I’m doing it all wrong…oops!).

What it can be and should be:

While I still can’t say that Facebook Camera is an Instagram killer by now, I can’t discount that possibility in the future. And the way I see it, this is a move in the right direction for Facebook, whose IPO by the way has since been rocked by all sorts of issues.

Should you download it?

Well, for someone who spends far greater time on Google Reader than Facebook, let’s just say I spent 3x more time on Facebook Camera since I’ve downloaded the app. Yes. You should.

Final Verdict:
For a 1.0 release that got its first update this morning, I give it 4.5/5 stars! App-solutely app-laudable!

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