There’s little argument that the iPhone camera is one of the best in the smartphone industry. Capturing photos is as easy as a press of a button, and the built-in app does a fine job. However, if you really want to take your photos to the next level, you need third-party software.
Here are some of the best third-party camera apps for iPhone.
1. Camera+ 2
The sequel to the wildly successful Camera+ app, Camera+ 2 is a go-to option for millions of iPhone owners. Launching the app feels somewhat similar to the default app which makes it easy to pick up and learn. However, one tap of your finger, and you have access to a whole new world of features.
Basic functions like continuous flash, 6x digital zoom and a timer make it an attractive option for beginners. More professional camera types will love extras like RAW shooting abilities, grid lines, and a variety of shooting modes. These modes enable popular functions like detecting smiles or a slow shutter for long exposure. If you want to grab a series of rapid shots, burst mode is waiting for you.
A perennial favorite online, Halide is a fantastic choice for photographers looking for more control over the camera. The price tag is well worth it, given just how easy Halide makes it to control a variety of settings.
Want to change the exposure or adjust the focus? Just flick your finger on the screen and look to the built-in histogram to make sure you’re dead on. Tapping a button on the screen allows quick switching between telephoto and wide-angle view on any iPhone with dual-lenses. Halide’s ability to modify the white balance or the ISO are present for photographers of any level to fine-tune every photo.
3. Obscura 2
While some camera apps keep you bogged down with confusing functions, Obscura 2 is the exact opposite. Built from the ground up to be minimal, this camera app is a favorite among photographers looking to make the jump into a more professional feature-set.
Support for RAW captures exists alongside Apple’s default HEIC format as well as JPEG and Live Photo. In addition, there’s even an option for depth capture mode. Basic features like grid overlay, flash control and manual controls are present for just about any tweaks you’d want to make. With nineteen different filters included, there are plenty of presets to help make post-editing a whole lot easier.
Created by manufacturers of some of the popular camera accessories for the iPhone, the Moment camera app is as great as their other products. For any photographer wishing to find an app that mimics the feel of shooting manually, you’ve found it.
There are plenty of manual controls available including ISO, white balance and shutter speed adjustment. RAW capture is unsurprisingly included as are Apple-focused image formats HEIF and HEVC. If you’re not already sold on Moment, using the Apple Watch as a remote shutter button will push you over the edge. Additionally, pair the app with the company’s lens accessories and leave the DSLR at home.
Packed with every feature its developers could include, ProCamera has been at the top of the paid App Store charts for years and for very good reason. Simply stated, there’s a ton of camera goodness here including manual mode that adds a histogram for additional control.
Perspective correction helps capture the ideal photo, as do settings for ISO, exposure, tint and so much more. That the developers managed to pack in a whopping seventy filters is awesome. ProCamera gets even more enticing with support for 4K video capture and Apple Watch control for remote shooting. There is a small initial purchase alongside and a small in-app subscription. Opt for the monthly subscription, and you’re rewarded with an eye-popping set of editing tools.
If you’re the owner of an iPhone with dual lenses (or the iPhone XR), head to the App Store and download Focos. The app promises to bring you into the future with computational photography. While that might sound fancy, the results speak for themselves.
There’s a suite of traditional tools including manual and depth control, adjustable bokeh, portraits and more. What really makes Focos a must-have is its use of 3D imaging to edit photos. With video tutorials to help you learn, Focos leads the way with this technology. There’s just something very cool about editing the depth of field in Portrait Mode after a picture has been captured. That all of this can be done on the fly makew this camera app an even more attractive offering.
It’s hard to say which of these is really the “best” iPhone camera app because they all offer something different. As a result, it’s difficult to choose a favorite. Fortunately, each of these App Store downloads will exponentially raise the quality of your photos. Whether you are a professional photographer or just want to feel like one, you can’t go wrong with anything on this list.