What Can You Do With the Snapseed App?

Edit photos nondestructively on your phone

Snapseed is a photo-editing app. It's free. It's nondestructive. It's more powerful than Instagram, and if you have room on your smartphone or tablet, you should download Snapseed right now, even if you are a professional photographer.

Snapseed logo.

Snapseed is a Google acquisition acquired to beef up Google's photo capabilities. Now it's a Google app with powerful photo-editing filters you can use on your smartphone or tablet. Some see Snapseed as a response to Instagram, but it is intended to be part of a continuing effort by Google to improve its photo-editing and to share software in general. Nik Software — the company that initially made Snapseed — developed a wide range of photo filters and plug-in products, specializing in high dynamic range (HDR) filters. Google has continued to add tools to the app to increase its capabilities.

Where to Find Snapseed

Snapseed is a free app available for both Android and iOS mobile devices. Take pictures on your mobile device, apply Snapseed's filters, and share them on social media platforms. 

Snapseed is an artist's tool with advanced features and recommended for serious photographers, but its easy-to-use controls make it suitable for everyone who likes to play around with their images. For the pros, its the app you use when you want to take a while to make an advanced image.

What You Can Do With Snapseed

Select a photo from your photo library or take a new photo. Use the Looks tab and select a thumbnail at the bottom of the screen to make the initial adjustment to the saturation of the image.

Most of the editing work is done in the Tools section of the app. There you find a healing brush, vignette, and glamor glow filters. There are also creative photo frames, textures, and grunge and lighting effects. You can rotate and crop images, fix skewed lines with the Perspective filter, and adjust the white balance of your images. Use the Curves filter to exercise precise control over brightness levels. Each time you tap a tool, you open options that you can try out on your image — click each thumbnail to apply the effect to your image and see how it looks.

Other tools include filters for head poses, portraits, lens blur, double exposure, and text.

When you are happy with the changes you've made to your photo, tap Export. From the export screen, you can share the edited image, save it separately from the individual photo or create a copy with permanent changes.

The entire process is simple and self-explanatory. It is also addictive. You can wander from tool to tool making adjustments, knowing that nothing is permanent until you make it permanent.

Technical Requirements for Snapseed

The free Android App is available at the Google Play store: Android OS 4.4 or later

The free iOS app is available at the Apple App Store: OS 9.0 or later

Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch

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