Christmas Camera

Christmas Day is tomorrow so you may be thinking that an app like Christmas Camera is already on the verge of becoming obsolete until next year, but that’s not entirely true. Christmas Camera is a collection of photo templates that you can put over your photos, and aside from Christmas templates it also includes “Love”, “Fashion”, and “New Year” designs for making your otherwise crappy photos a little more interesting.

There really isn’t a lot going on in this app… pick one of 31 templates, pick a photo or snap a new one, and save it. I have no problem with simplicity and not every app has to have more features than a Swiss Army knife, but the thing that stands out most in this app is its one gigantic flaw: it sucks at handling photos!

The templates are great. They’re colorful, they’re cute, and some are so sickenly gaudy that it’s kind of funny, but getting your photos to fit these templates is the problem. When you choose a photo from your camera roll you get the chance to Move & Scale, but you can only scale your photo to be larger not smaller. If this doesn’t sound important, wait ’til you’re trying to fit your photo into a template that has cutouts in very specific places… if those cutouts don’t match your photo, you’re screwed because photo repositioning is also a near impossibility.

One thing Christmas Camera does right, however, is it applies the template to your camera view when you’re taking a new photo so you can position it correctly. Nice move.

Wondershare can fix this app, but I think it’ll take some work. They need to cut out the Move & Scale step which is basically useless and allow the user to do all moving and scaling with the template applied. Being able to preview templates before taking or selecting a photo is also an important step that’s missing. We also need to be able to scale photos up AND down, rotate the image freely, and move/scale photos beyond the visible area. I know these things are all possible because I’ve seen them done in other apps! Christmas C@rds is a great example of photo handling done right.

Some of the templates in Christmas Camera, ie: ones with wider photo areas, aren’t so prone to the problems I’m griping about so I wouldn’t call this app a total loss… but I really don’t think it’s quite ready for primetime and it’s definitely not a $3 app. Yet.

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