Photoshop Express: Photoshop in your browser

Mikey 3 comments
  • Software
Photoshop Express: Photoshop in your browser

Last September we mentioned that Adobe had plans to make a web based version of their flagship Photoshop product. Photoshop Express has finally launched in beta and it's free as long as you create an account. If you want to be spared giving away your email address to yet another service, read on as I have already had a play with it and have briefly shared my experience below.

Marketing the service with the Photoshop brand won't do any harm, but be advised that Photoshop Express is not barely 1% of what the full Photoshop desktop application is. That said, it's still a great tool for anyone who has even wanted to have a go at basic Photo manipulation.

PE Splash

Naturally you have to upload an image before you can start editing, and thankfully the process is painless. In fact this is one of the better file upload managers I have ever seen, allowing you to easily upload a single or multiple images at once. The upload time will depend on too many variables to mention here, but the 8 medium resolution images I sent up took less than a minute.

PE Upload

Once uploaded your images can be tagged and assigned to your own custom galleries if desired. Galleries and photos can be made public or kept private.

PE Library

Selecting an image for editing is as easy as double clicking it. You will then be presented with various manipulation effects, which are demonstrated with a real-time preview on top of your image.

The options available are:


  • Crop and rotate
  • Auto contrast
  • Exposure
  • Red eye removal
  • Touch-up
  • Saturation


  • White balance
  • Highlight
  • Fill light
  • Sharpen
  • Soft focus


  • Pop colour
  • Hue
  • Black and white
  • Tint
  • Sketch
  • Distort

Curiously the option to resize an image is absent.




The interface is very slick and not what you would expect to see in a web based application. In fact it far exceeds what I expected it would be in terms of performance and features. It's worth signing up for anyone remotely interested in being able to edit and share photos from the one location.

If I get time I will write a full review on every feature but for now I hope this summary article gives you an idea of what to expect.

Not a Member!


Monday 31st March 2008 | 04:26 AM

I'd be surprised if this pays off for Adobe, if you have an internet connection and want to really manipulate photos, then torrents are a much better answer than a half-assed program that barely scratches the surface of what Photoshop is about.

Not a Member!


Wednesday 2nd April 2008 | 12:24 AM

My sneaky suspicion is that this Photoshop Express is to get people used to the next generation of Photoshop underworks. Rumor has it that the next generation of Photoshop is going to have a core component that is online.

Not a Member!


Monday 7th April 2008 | 01:15 AM

I've always wanted Photoshop, but a real version is so expensive, and it's most likely far more robust than I will ever be capable of using. I tried to hijack it for free off Warez a time or two, but always had virus problems, as well as never being able to figure out how to crack the registration key issue.

A couple years ago Google started offering a photo editor that you download for free, and hence it resides right there on your desktop. It’s called “Picasa.” I have been using it since it first was offered, and judging from Michaels review, it’s quite close to the exact same thing.

It has: Basic- Crop, Straighten, Rotate, Redeye, Auto Contrast, Auto Color, and Light Fill
Tuning- Fill Light, Highlights Shadows, Color Temperature, and a Neutral Color Picker
Effects-Sharpen, Sepia, B&W, Warmify, Film Grain, Tint, Saturation, Soft Focus, Glow, Filtered B&W, Focal B&W, Graduated Tint

In addition to the similarities I just mentioned above, it can “Batch Edit” Email (from several default clients, as well as ones you pick) Prints, Order Prints, Post to Blogs, Collage, and Export.

So much for the similarities... I wonder about some of the differences. Picasa has no ads, and no uploading of your photos is required. Now I’m no professional photographer, but I do take hundreds of 10.2MP shots wherever I have my camera with me. You never know when one of a hundred photos might be a real winner, so I always get them all off my camera onto my computer. The thought of having to then upload them to a web based app. seems a bit redundant. As far as having to register, Google already knows how many hairs on my head, so no worries there. (Yea, right)

The only thing I see is that the GUI for Photoshop Express is pretty Flashy (could be a pun, but for all I know it could be Java) Regardless, it looks cool. I took the “Test Drive” and though I did like the high priced ambiance of the way everything looked as it went through its functions, it just doesn’t do anything more than Picasa does.

The point about having your photos available from any work station is valid, but Picasa has a “Web Album” that keeps it on the same playing field, the only difference is that I only upload the photos that I have been through, edited, and think make the grade. I remember when I had 4MB of HD (the store where I bought the computer told me I would never need any more than that to go with my Windows 3.1) and then, being able to upload all those photos would have been a blessing. I think I have three empty bays in the box I’m using today.

I was just going to comment, I had no idea I was going to write a review. As a regular visitor to Rustylime, I respect what Michael has to say, so I will be watching for the full review to find out if there is any real advantage to Photoshop Express.

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