Posts Tagged cloud reader

Adobe Carousel is a Photo Hound’s Dream

These days, it appears as though everyone has a home computer. It also seems like most people have iPhones. And I always see a surprising amount of people carrying around iPads, too. So it’s not out of the question to imagine that at least some of these folks own two or even all three of these devices. The problem is, in this age of shutter-happy digital photography, it gets a little hard to store all those pictures in one location. Putting them on the phone is a good idea because then they can be shown off at a moment’s notice. Keeping them on the pad makes for easy editing. But then, the computer has a lot more storage space. What to do…

Well, Adobe’s gone and made a reasonable solution to the issue: Adobe Carousel.

For all intents and purposes, it’s basically cloud photo storage. All images will be kept in one spot and will be available on any iOS device with an internet connection. Tweaking a photo from one (i.e. adjusting hues and the like) no longer requires syncing or transferring between systems; the updated image will be viewable by all instantly. Oh, and said editing can be done from inside Adobe Carousel, similar to Photoshop Lightroom. It certainly seems like something the photo-happy iOS user could get a lot of use out of.

Granted, all this convenience and freedom from restrictive storage capacities does have a price. A very literal price. Adobe Carousel will require a subscription which can be either monthly ($5.99) or yearly ($59.99), depending on the user’s preference. Granted this isn’t all that substantial when compared to various other subscription fees, and it has no restrictions so users can import, edit and browse as much as they want.

There doesn’t appear to be a specific release date yet, but according to Adobe’s website it should be out “soon.” Likewise there’s no official word on cost, free or otherwise, aside from the subscription fee. Still, this is an app shutterbugs should keep an eye out for.

Apple’s recent restrictions on apps offering external subscriptions and content are starting to hit, particularly as these apps are starting to remove external links to purchase content that isn’t offered through Apple’s services. However, there’s nothing that Apple can do about web apps – and that’s what Amazon is looking to exploit to improve their Kindle service on the iPad, with the Cloud Reader.

The Kindle Cloud Reader, powered by HTML5, allows Kindle users to read their books either directly in Safari for iPad (it isn’t available for iPhone and iPod touch yet), or by saving a bookmark to the home screen that will let it run as a full screen web app. From there, all the books that a user has purchased on Kindle will be readable, though some books are not yet optimized for the Cloud Reader. These books can either just be downloaded from the web, or can be downloaded to the device for offline reading, which can be done by long-pressing on any book in the library and selecting “Pin Book.”

The most important part of the Cloud Reader besides being able to exist outside of the Apple approval process, is that it has built-in Kindle Store access. Users can browse and buy books from within the Cloud Reader, and start reading them right away. Compare this to the current state of the Kindle app, where the ability to buy new books, and any consideration of book buying is non-existent. It’s like the presence of these books in the library is just a fortunate coincidence for the user. By pushing their Cloud Reader, Amazon can not only be platform-agnostic (though only Safari on iPad, Safari for Mac, and Google Chrome are officially supported, although it will be coming to other platforms in coming month), but can make it easier for them to sell Kindle books to users. Don’t be surprised if Nook and other e-reader services start launching similar HTML5 options in the near future.

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