Adobe Lightroom Mobile is finally here for Android, bringing enhanced editing capabilities to your Creative Cloud images.
It’s free in the Play Store, but you’ll need a subscription to Adobe’s cloud service to make use of it. Curiously, the company decided to go with an app that only works on phones for now, pledging that another version for Android tablets is in the works. When Adobe built its apps for the iPhone and iPad they went in the opposite direction, opting first for Apple’s tablet.
Adobe Lightroom Mobile gives you access to the images in your Lightroom catalog along with those from the image gallery on your phone. You can also parse your photos, selecting the ones you want to keep and rejecting others.
The interface is nearly identical to its iOS counterparts, a good strategy for those who bounce between multiple operating systems throughout the day.
Editing is limited to what you get in the Basic panel, so don’t expect the full suite of what you would have on the desktop. But for a smaller screen this is probably the right move, as more sophisticated editing would likely take place on a laptop or desktop anyway.
If you’re curious to try the app out and don’t have a subscription, Adobe offers a 30-day trial of its Creative Cloud service. If you want to keep the subscription, which syncs up your images on Adobe’s servers and includes other goodies, you’ll pay $10 a month thereafter.
Why this matters: Adobe wants to stay on its throne as the king of photo editing, and it knows the future will be increasingly mobile. Both professional and amateur photographers now expect the flexibility of viewing and making tweaks to images from any of their devices. While editing on one’s phone may sound painful, the Android ecosystem is home to plenty of big phones that make it a manageable task.