Price: $1.99 Score: 8/10 Category: Photo & Video
Wood Camera, developed by Bright Mango, is a functional, serviceable photo app in the familiar style of Instagram. Unfortunately, for a paid iPhone app, the whole affair seems a tad clunky and underpowered, despite a lot of great potential.
Good things first. There are 22 different lenses you can overlay onto your photos, and there’s a lot of variability between choices. The overall experience leaves you feeling like you have more options to play around with than Instagram currently offers.
You can import and export your images at the full, 8 MP resolution of the iPhone 4S camera, which is another great feature. Speaking of exporting, it’s easy to share your photos to the Camera Roll, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or (yes!) Instagram.
There’s a lot of nice, small touches that show that a lot of care went into this iPhone app. For example, the latest update changed the in-app camera setting so that a user’s custom flash setting is saved automatically. Another great (yet minor) thing is the non-destructive setting: you can go back and modify any changes you made to the original image, even after exporting your work.
But it’s not all peachy in the land of Wood Camera. Unlike Instagram, you don’t snap the photo first and then mess around with the filters…you have to pick a filter first, and then snap the shot. It’s a small difference, but the Instagram default works so much better and feels so much more natural. Overall, the navigation just isn’t as intuitive as other Instagram clones we’ve tried.
Also an issue during our testing was the fact that we had to wait a good 2-5 seconds between snapping photos, making it a poor choice for anyone trying to capture a seamless array of images as an event unfolds.
Overall, despite some really beautiful lens filters you can mess around with (not to mention some dope textures), two bucks seems a little steep for an iPhone app that doesn’t offer much more than the free offerings out there.
Wood Camera is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.1 or later.