The 9 Best Apps for Fixing Blurry Pictures

Enhance your favorite photos of poignant moments and fun memories

It's frustrating when you capture a special moment with your camera only to discover the picture you took is blurry. For these photos, choose one of these apps to fix out-of-focus photos, no matter your skill level.

A smartphone camera can get dirty and smudged with daily use and storage in bags and pockets. You can quickly remove smudges, smears, and more with a soft microfiber cloth or an eyeglass cloth.

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Best for Basic Photo Fixes: Focus Magic

Focus Magic showing photo fixed.
What We Like
  • Easy to use.

  • Lifetime free upgrades.

  • Comes with a Photoshop plug-in.

What We Don't Like
  • The app isn’t free.

  • No smartphone support.

Focus Magic comes with a simple written tutorial to get up to speed quickly. It also has a clean interface but contains enough filters and tweaks to accomplish most tasks. However, if you’re looking for something to edit the finer details, you may want something more powerful.

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Quickest Way to Fix Photo Blur: Photolemur

Photolemur showing a split screen.
What We Like
  • Packed with features.

  • Plug-ins for Lightroom, Photoshop, and Apple Photos.

  • Bulk picture enhancing.

What We Don't Like
  • No 32-bit version.

  • Must provide your email address to download for free.

This modestly priced app comes chock full of features such as color recovery, exposure compensation, natural light correction, and face retouching. Photolemur comes with a simple and clean interface and is also very intuitive.

Shedding some light onto your subject could be all you need for a sharp image. Without adequate lighting, the camera has trouble focusing on your photo subject. Use the app's auto-flash feature until you get a more instinctive feel for lighting. Or, practice taking photos with and without the flash and then compare the quality of the image.

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Powerful Alternative to Photoshop: PaintShop Pro

PaintShop Pro with Unsharp Mask options showing.
What We Like
  • Supports most RAW camera images.

  • Perpetual license; no monthly subscription.

What We Don't Like
  • With so many features, it takes some time to learn.

This option-packed app contains as many features and options as Photoshop but at a fraction of the cost.

Unlike Photoshop, Windows users get a perpetual license for a one-time purchase making this a dream for photographers and hobbyists.

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Most Widely Used App to Fix Blurry Pictures: Adobe Photoshop

Photoshop at the select photo screen.
What We Like
  • Packed with features.

  • The industry standard for image manipulation.

What We Don't Like
  • Monthly subscription means you never own the software.

  • Expensive.

  • Complicated interface and high learning curve.

No longer available to purchase as a standalone copy, Adobe sells Photoshop via the Creative Cloud. While this is handy for keeping your app always up to date, the monthly subscription can be costly.

You can either subscribe to a single app for $20.99 per month or to the more economical Photography package, including Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic CC, at $9.99 per month.

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Best Photo Editing App for Photographers: Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom showing sharpen features.
What We Like
  • Simpler interface compared to Photoshop.

  • Excellent organization and photo database tool.

What We Don't Like
  • Monthly subscription fee; you never own the software.

Lightroom is an easier-to-use product than its big brother, Photoshop, yet it still packs a punch for photo editing along with organization. If you don't need Photoshop, you can opt for a monthly Lightroom subscription at $9.99 per month for 1 TB of storage.

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Photoshop Express showing details features.
What We Like
  • Easier to use than Photoshop CC.

  • Has features to create memes, add graphics, borders, and more.

What We Don't Like
  • Not available on as many platforms.

For the smartphone, tablet, and Windows user, Adobe has a feature-rich app with many of the full-blown Photoshop options. Geared toward the amateur, PS Express makes editing your pictures quick and easy. It is available for Windows users who have the Microsoft Store installed.

While a tripod might take some of the spontaneity away from taking snapshots, it can give you a steady foundation for a stable image. By setting up a tripod, you can plan your subjects with little time and find the perfect area to frame for that captivating image. There are plenty of small tripods for smartphones and smaller cameras, and they’re relatively inexpensive.

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Best App to Sharpen an Image on Mobile: Adobe Photoshop Fix

Adobe Photoshop Fix.
What We Like
  • Can save to your Lightroom collections.

  • Save photos in the Photoshop (PSD) format.

What We Don't Like
  • The Android version is not available for tablets or Chromebooks.

Photoshop Fix's primary function is to do exactly as the name implies: fix your pictures for your mobile devices.

You can quickly edit any blurry pics without needing to be a professional photographer, which makes this app great for iOS or Android smartphone users.

Download For:

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Best Selection of Presets: VSCO

VSCO app.
What We Like
  • App has some social features.

  • Numerous setting presets.

  • Tips and tricks section.

What We Don't Like
  • Yearly subscription. 

Geared more toward the photographer, VSCO (Visual Supply Company) comes with numerous presets allowing emulation of different cameras and films.

Users can also share their creations in the social media feature. The sharpen feature is easy to use with a simple slider to adjust blurry photos on a smartphone.

Download For:

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Most Powerful Free Alternative: GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program)

GIMP displaying the sharpen dialog screen.
What We Like
  • Open source allows for customization of the interface.

  • Free to use.

What We Don't Like
  • Interface is complex and requires time to learn.

  • Support is iffy due to the open-source format.

The only entry to include a Linux version alongside macOS and Windows support, GIMP has tons of features, such as the Unsharp Mask, to fix unfocused images. GIMP has enough features to give Photoshop a run for its money.

It may take some time to learn this fairly complicated interface, including finding the Sharpen feature, which could take some digging. Fortunately, the help file included will guide you directly to this feature. GIMP is also open source, meaning it's free to use.

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