posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 at 1:08 PM EST

Camera Awesome's logo. Click here to visit the Camera Awesome website!Camera phones have consumed a big chunk of the compact camera market thanks to their convenience and built-in sharing capabilities, but for the most part, they lag behind even relatively basic dedicated cameras in terms of their feature set and image quality. A new application for iOS devices aims to swing the balance further in the camera phone's favor. (And it's also compatible with the iPad and iPod Touch.)

Photo sharing site SmugMug's new Camera Awesome app not only adds a bunch more features absent in Apple's own camera app, but also uses some clever technology from Athentech that tries to maximize the image quality. Of course, it's still limited by what the camera phone's sensor and lens can provide, so more recent iOS devices will yield the best results, but it will work on any iOS device capable of running iOS 4.3 or later.

Capturing a photo with Camera Awesome. Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc. Click for a bigger picture!

Capturing a photo with Camera Awesome.
Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc.

Pre-capture features include a digital level function, and optional grids for Rule of Thirds, Golden Spiral, Golden Triangle, and square compositions. Camera Awesome also allows users to set the metering and focus points separately without recomposing the image, something most dedicated cameras don't provide. Burst shooting is possible at a handy nine frames per second.

Once your images have been captured, Camera Awesome offers what SmugMug is calling the Awesomize button. Based on Athentech's Perfectly Clear technology, this provides one-click image correction, automatically correcting for common image defects. A slider control makes it simple to adjust the overall strength of the effect, and you can fine-tune the individual corrections made, as well.

Post-capture, you can crop your images, add text, and apply a variety of preset effects, filters, textures, and frames, some of which were created by pro photographer, author and educator Kevin Kubota.

A variety of post-capture effects, filters, frames and textures are available. Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc. Click for a bigger picture!

A variety of post-capture effects, filters, frames and textures are available.
Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc.

Camera Awesome isn't just for still imaging, either. A movie mode continuously buffers video in the background, and can save up to five seconds of video from before you pressed the record button, a function that's particularly helpful if your reflexes aren't the greatest.

Even sharing has been improved upon by Camera Awesome. The app can send photos by email and SMS, and also supports uploading not only to SmugMug's own photo sharing service, but also to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Picasa, Photobucket, and YouTube. You can even have preset effects applied automatically, and your photos uploaded to multiple sites simultaneously, with no user intervention whatsoever.

SmugMug's Camera Awesome app is available immediately on iTunes, and you can't argue with the pricing: it's completely free of charge. As noted previously, iOS 4.3 or later devices are supported. More details on the Camera Awesome website.

Camera Awesome can share with much more than just SmugMug's own site. Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc. Click for a bigger picture!

Camera Awesome can share with much more than just SmugMug's own site.
Screenshot provided by SmugMug Inc.


Press Release

Camera Awesome:  You Took That Photo on an iPhone® ? Liar.

Free iPhone App Says “No!” to Ugly Smartphone Photos

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., March 1, 2012 – Camera Awesome captures special memories with the camera you actually own, not the dSLR you’d sell your soul for. It takes your photos to the next level by shooting faster and taking sharper, better-exposed shots. Make your memories come alive with gorgeous effects -- and share them on all the sites you love.

“The iPhone is revolutionizing photography by empowering us to invent the camera you never knew you always wanted. It only takes a few minutes to realize you’re holding the future of photography in your hands. The world will be a better place when everyone has an app worthy of the iPhone camera.”, said Don MacAskill, CEO & Chief Geek of SmugMug.

Three Simple Steps

  1. Shoot: Camera Awesome is faaasst, and so simple anyone can use it. And yet, it has high-end features even expensive cameras lack, such as a level for the horizon and the ability to focus on one spot and set exposure on another.

  2. Awesomize: One tap makes your photos come alive with vibrant color.   Hundreds of professional effects, filters and borders transform your memories from forgettable camera phone snappies to gorgeous works of art.

  3. Flaunt: Share on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, SmugMug, Flickr, Picasa, Photobucket, SMS and email with one simple tap.

At a concert?  Camera Awesome can automatically apply your favorite effect and share as you shoot so your friends who can’t wait won’t have to.

Introduction to Camera Awesome.
Video provided by SmugMug Inc. / YouTube

Camera Awesome's breathtaking collection of filters, textures and frames includes exclusive filters created by Kevin Kubota. Named a Top 10 Wedding Photographer by American Photo, Kubota created the industry's most popular post-processing actions for Photoshop and Lightroom.

"I was thrilled to create filters for Camera Awesome because of the power it places in the hands of iPhone photographers," said Kubota. “Kubota filters are the standard for pro photographers around the world who use programs like Photoshop®, and now they are available to everyone via Camera Awesome."

Camera Awesome is free and available on the App Store.  Learn more at

About SmugMug
What’s missing from online photo/video hosting and sharing? Passion. Meet SmugMug, with billions of happy photos and millions of passionate customers. A photo sharing service with unmatched security, unlimited uploads, originals archiving, customizable privacy controls and heroic support. We’re committed to providing a fun, safe and simple experience for as little as $5/month or $40/year. Archive, share and print the photos you love with SmugMug. Learn more at

About Kevin Kubota and Kubota Image Tools
Kevin Kubota is one of the Top 10 Wedding Photographers in the world and the genius  behind Kubota Image Tools, source of the industry’s most popular post-processing Actions for Photoshop and Lightroom. Kevin’s work has been featured in publications such as Studio Photography and Design, Rangefinder, Shutterbug, Professional Photographer, American Photo, Popular Photography & Imaging and Nikon advertorials.

About Perfectly Clear by Athentech Imaging
“Awesomize” correction from the “Awesomize” button in the Edit UI is powered by Perfectly Clear technology, the world’s most advanced automatic image correction ( Perfectly Clear’s award winning and patented technology analyzes your photo and applies over 10 different corrections automatically, saving you the time and hassle, making your photos look awesome. Perfectly Clear, and the Perfectly Clear logo, are the Trade-marks of Athentech Imaging, Inc. used under license by SmugMug.