Adobe Releases AI-Assisted Photoshop Camera App

"Sensei" technology recognizes a photo's contents and suggests a handful of appropriate, oftentimes animated, lenses

Initially announced in November last year, Adobe’s Photoshop Camera App arrives for iOS and Android users today. It offers smartphone photographers real-time access to lenses, filters and the company’s Sensei technology—an AI capable of recognizing faces, landscapes, selfies and food with the ability to edit each appropriately at the point of capture. Edits can also be made after the fact, on photos uploaded from your camera roll, with the tap of the app’s “magic wand” or with one of the preloaded filters—which range from creator-made (like Billie Eilish‘s “Wings”) and cleverly classic (a filmic filter called “Analog”) to celestial (a sky-altering overlay called “Interstellar”).

by Josh Rubin

The app proves perfect for anyone making quick yet sizable edits to photos for social media. Within the app you’re able to save to your camera roll or upload directly to a bevy of platforms. Unlike Instagram’s Story filters (many of which rely on AR), the Photoshop Camera App offers flexibility and customization. If a blue sky you added through a filter looks unnatural, it can be toyed with until it fits. And the masks Sensei makes to separate foreground from background are impressively detailed as shown above—the tree branches and leaves remain perfectly intact when a new sky and moon is popped in to the background. We do hope that the Sensei technology improves enough to reflect that altered sky in bodies of water and other similar cases.

This process does democratize Photoshop for those who would’ve otherwise reverted to knock-off or free versions elsewhere online. Plus, if you’re a Lightroom iOS user, you can easily pull in your photos from there—even if they’re RAW. Behind the scenes on importing Lightroom renders a JPG that Photoshop Camera pulls in to work with.

by Evan Malachosky

A long list of lenses are available now, but Adobe says more are sure to come. Included will be a robust catalog of collaborative designs and offerings from independent designers. Anyone well-versed in Photoshop will eventually be able to craft and upload your own iterations to be spotlighted alongside those from artists. From the current library, we favor “Analog” and “Prism” as nostalgic options and “Color Echo” and “Spectrum” for more graphic effects. Simpler options like “Studio Light” and “Blue Skies” make subtle adjustments one would otherwise have to rely on Lightroom or Photoshop for—like replicating the lighting usually found within professional photo studios.

Hero image by Evan Malachosky