30+ Excellent Apps for Android Photographers

Android’s built-in camera application is basic, but can get the job done when you need to quickly snap a moment. It doesn’t offer much beyond the simple snap-and-save routine, leaving the field wide open for other apps to enter the arena with boatloads of features, adding shooting modes, features and post-processing effects to give your shots that extra edge. Here’s a look at some of the best free Android apps to help you take better photos.

We will look at the four most common imaging tasks on the phone – capturing photos, viewing them, editing them and then sharing them with the world. Although a number of the apps do all of these on their own, more often than not they are better for one purpose than the others. All these apps are free or offer a free, ad-supported version. Some do have Pro versions that either take away the ads or offer more in terms of features.

Capture

Let’s start by the most basic function of a camera phone (apart from the regular phone features, of course): taking pictures. Like I mentioned before, the basic camera app lets you take pictures, but these let you do so much more.

Camera360

Camera360 URLCamera360 tries to be the Swiss Army knife of photography apps on the Android, and does a pretty good job of it. Six different shooting modes and more than 30 effects mean it will be a while before you run out of different ways to shoot a picture. Try the tilt-shift mode for miniature mode-like images, or maybe the scenery mode to embed your photo as part of another scene.

Android version: 1.5 and up

Camera360

Retro Camera

RetroCamera URLIf old school images are your thing, it’s hard to beat the utility of retro camera. The app comes with 5 vintage cameras and a bunch of vignetting and surface effects to make your pics look like authentic antiques. The process is simple – choose a camera, decide whether you want a color or a black & white photo and press the shutter on the screen. The darkroom-style gallery for viewing photos is a nice touch.

Android version: 1.5 and up

Retro Camera

FxCamera

FxCamera-urlFxCamera does one thing: allow you to take photos from your mobile camera and apply a few interesting effects to them. The list is not long, although the 5 effects that are included work as one would expect them to. For a free app, it is definitely worth a try.

Android version: 1.5 and up

FxCamera

Camera3D

Camera3D urlTake 3D pictures from your normal phone camera. Before you get excited, note that the app simply lets you take pictures of a subject from different angles and then lets you preview them as a seamless 3D image. When taking pictures, a ghost image of the previous shot shows to help align the next one appropriately. You can then view the images from inside the app using the phone’s accelerometer.

Android version: 1.6 and up

Camera3D

Action Snap

Action Snap urlEver wanted the ability to quickly capture multiple frames when shooting a fast action sequence, in hopes that the timing will be right on at least one? Action Snap will let you do just that – capture four quick shots and compose them in one image. You can choose the interval between shots, decide to align the images in four columns or quadrants and select a photo effect.

Android version: 2.1 and up

Action Snap

PRO Paint Camera

PRO Paint Camera URLPRO Paint Camera supercharges the stock Android camera with a pack of goodies: ten filters, two white balance settings, and the ability to edit photos. As well as the regular brightness- and contrast-related settings, the app also lets you choose from a bunch of clipart images to add to your photos along with text annotations in various fonts. Perfect for making LOLCat pictures on the go.

Android version: 1.5 and up

Pro Paint Camera

Mobile Hidden Camera

Mobile Hidden Camera URLIf you ever need to take photographs without letting others know, but were worried the image preview on your screen or the shutter sound would give you away, Mobile Hidden Camera is what you need. The app installs itself with a notepad icon, and when you launch it shows nothing but a blank screen. No preview, no shutter noise, no flash. The app stealthily takes your photo (or video) and saves it for later.

Android version: 1.1 and up

Mobile Hidden Camera

Photaf 3D Panorama Free

Photaf URLCertain situations lend themselves to beautifully to panoramic images – like landscapes, or our messy desks. The problem with making such images though, is the process of taking multiple images and stitching them together. Photaf 3D Panorama doesn’t just take the pictures and automatically stitch them together, it also provides a 3D panorama viewer in which to preview your images in a 360 degree view. It even has an auto-shoot mode that takes care of shooting the right portions for each frame.

Android version: 2.1 and up

Photaf 3D Panorama Free

Camera Fun Free

Camera Fun Free urlCamera Fun Free takes a slightly different approach to applying effects to photos – it lets you preview the effect BEFORE the photo is captured. You can select one of 6 lens filters and see how the picture will appear right in the image preview on your screen. Once you are happy with the result, simply click the shutter to capture the image as you see it.

Android version: 1.6 and up

Camera Fun Free

Face Blender

You can call Face Blender a one-trick-pony, and not even a very consistent one at that. But when it does work, the results can be pretty funny. The idea is to take photos of two people and the app will then blend them to combine features and create a hybrid face. It needs the two images to be pretty close in terms of alignment for the trick to work, though, so patience is key. If you don’t care for technical accuracy on the other hand, its good for a few good laughs with friends.

Android version: 2.1 and up

Face Blender

View

So you’ve captured a ton of images and now want to browse them, or maybe show them around. Android’s built-in picture gallery should do the trick for viewing images on your device or on your Picasa Web account, but what if you need more than that?

QuickPic

QuickPic URLThe stock Android Gallery app is nice and functional, but not exactly the fastest one around. It sacrifices speed for that animated scrolling jazz. If a super simple and fast image viewer is what you need, QuickPic fits the bill. It makes viewing images on the phone quick and functional. You get all the usual viewing and managing options, including a nice multi-select mode for batch operations. Nothing more, nothing less.

Android version: 2.0 and up

QuickPic

JustPictures

JustPictures URLJustPictures goes beyond the stock gallery app by supporting a slew of photo sharing sites including (but not limited to) Flickr, Smugmug, Facebook and even DeviantArt, in addition to images on the phone and Picasa Web. Once you connect your accounts