Article in App of the Week category.
Replace your iPhone’s default camera app with the pro-level Halide
As I sit on a lake writing this, with the sun setting over the peaceful water and my pups loudly disturbing the silence, there is…
As I sit on a lake writing this, with the sun setting over the peaceful water and my pups loudly disturbing the silence, there is one app I come to appreciate more and more. Halide is a gorgeous, powerful, well-thought-out manual photo app that allows me to always capture the moment.
Apple’s default camera app on iPhone is solid. Over time Apple has invested quite a bit in the stock app and it no doubt gets used more than any other simply because it is installed by default. But for those who are looking to up their game, a more granular camera app is needed. Many are out there, but few are as standout as Halide.
Everything about Halide has been intricately thought out. Including the fact it can be used entirely single handed. The app looks fantastic with a streamlined interface that keeps all the pro-level controls just within reach.
It also makes great use of the iPhone’s screen real estate. On newer devices, the exposure compensation and a live histogram fill the affectionately-dubbed “bunny ears” to either side of the True Depth camera notch. This ensures there is no dead space on the display and you get the most space to see your shot before you snap.
RAW mode is just a toggle away and autofocus gets disabled with just a tap so you can precisely tune your shot to focus on what you want and not what the camera thinks you want. Pro photogs will undoubtedly appreciate the Technical Readout on shots too. This gives an explicit breakdown of all the metadata capture with your photo. ISO, exposure, focal length, flash, aperture, etc are all broken down so you can tell exactly how your shot was captured and what you can adjust the next time. It’s very akin to what you’d see on any DSLR shot.
A standout feature of Apple’s camera app has been Portrait mode. These capture amazing shots with subtly blurred backgrounds and a bevy of lighting effects to enhance. In Halide, not only can you capture these depth shots, but a live-view shows the depth reading in real time. When you do snap a perfect portrait shot, Halide saves a blurred as well as an un-blurred photo so you have your choice.
This is in part what I love about Halide. It takes advantage of the major iOS features like RAW capture, the contextual menu on the Home Screen, and of course the depth mode. It ties into the Apple ecosystem deep to always capture the best images that your phone is capable of. There’s no getting around that a dedicated high-resolution shooter can get better pics than a smartphone but when it is the one that is with you all the time, you need to make the best of what you have. Halide lets you do just that.
But enough about other people's apps.