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Not taken by us

GLOBAL – We’re very pleased with the cameras on our Nokia Lumia 800 smartphones. But are they capable of doing what has so far proven impossible? Turning a bad photographer (me) into a passable one? I look forward to finding out over the holiday but have already put my tool kit together.

Pictures Lab

Billed (by its authors) as the “ultimate picture effects app”, Pictures Lab offers dozens of effects and features. At present, it’s the closest thing to having Photoshop on your mobile phone. It offers the usual vintage, lomo and colour saturation effects you’ll be used to from free apps, but goes on to do more than any of them. Adjusted pictures can be saved back to the phone, or shared directly to Facebook and Twitter.

effects browser

 burnt effect

Also worth noting is how well the app sits with the Metro interface and also the speed with which it works – all 30 or so effects offer real-time preview.

Pictures Lab costs £2.29, but this is frankly a trivial amount of money to pay for the functionality it contains.


ImageTool has a much more modest feature set on offer, but then it’s a free, ad-supported piece of software.

What it does is rotate and flip photos. That’s it. It doesn’t sound like very much but the app does a quick and easy job of the task. And handily, it’s attached to the ‘extras’ item inside the camera software itself.

flipping images

 rotating images


The name probably tells you 99 per cent of what you need to know about this app. Yes, it adds effects to your photos, and it’s free. It offers the normal colourise, sepia and lomo style effects. Perhaps more surprising for a free app, the effects can all be customised with touch-controlled meters. There’s also a cropping tool for good measure.

adjusting colours

 manual controls

There’s also a 79p paid version with no adverts. It depends on your needs, but it may be the case that if you’re prepared to pay 79p, then the £2.29 for Pictures Lab isn’t a big stretch for quite a lot more.

Are you editing on the move? What are you using?

image credit: controltheweb