Photo App Review: Please don’t buy Photoscape. It’s that bad.

Full size Photoscape image

Version reviewed: 1.0
Price: $0.99

Rating 0 stars - horrible app. Hall of Shame.

Photoscape, for iPhone, horrible photo appBottom Line: A combination of super low res, bad coding, and shady marketing tactics make this one of the worst new apps in a long time.

I rarely get this angry about an app, but Photoscape you have really put me off. Not only is the app poorly designed with unusably low resolution, but there might be some App Store review scams at work here to try and artificially inflate the ratings of this app in order to boost sales.

It was 181 in the paid photo apps yesterday. As of this writing, it’s moved up to 162, which means it’s getting closer to the money sweet spot. Please, don’t spend money on this app. It’s horrible. Read on to find out why.

“This surely blows Instagram out of the water!” – PhotoApps. Probably a fake quote. There is no Photoscape doesn’t understand Instagram and Instagram has nothing to worry about with this app. There is a lot wrong with this app. Let’s focus on a few of the big issues.

Photoscape is a filter app with no real theme or focus. Most of the 50+ filters are odd looking duotone combinations. There are a few textured overlays. The effects are one-click. There’s no way to adjust them. Most of them wash out the image and apply color tints. There’s little exciting here.

The 319×336 pixel resolution is too small to be usable for anything, even by low-res “bandwidth-friendly” standards. Photos aren’t large inough to be usable on Instagram. It’s not even screen resolution on an old iPhone 2G or 3G. My original Motorola RAZR V1 had three times the pixels this app does… in 2005. In fact, a screenshot taken of the app is better quality than the image that the app saves.

Except that it’s not. The app has an unusual aspect ratio — not 4:3 and not square either. It doesn’t crop images as it imports them from your camera roll. It squishes and distorts them.

The Undo button is very destructive. It doesn’t undo the last effect, it deletes the image you’re working on. Sometimes the toolbar refuses to slide, preventing you from being able to save your image. In retrospect, that’s probably not a bad thing.

The app right now has 13 reviews. Two of them are from real people. The rest of them are suspect five star reviews from users like Amen Lorrrrd, OjLoko or Moment6ife, who have either never bought another photo app or are shill reviewers trying to artificially inflate the ratings of this app to improve its visibility in the App Store. I suspect there will be a lot more soon, along with other suspect ratings tactics. At some point, these tactics will get the app high enough on the charts to where real users are going to buy this piece of garbage and they will have been ripped off.

Right now, this is a horribly coded app that deserves to wallow at the bottom of the charts — somewhere not visible around 3000. Save your dollar. Please don’t buy it to see if it’s as bad as I say it is. Just trust me on this. The combination of poor coding and shady promotion tactics make this an app to be avoided. This is one of the ten worst apps I’ve ever tested.

Photoscape, welcome to Life In LoFi’s Hall of Shame.

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later.

Photoscape - Appy Days LLC.




About Marty Yawnick 1808 Articles
Marty is a self-employed graphic designer in the Fort Worth/Dallas Metroplex. He is an avid Rangers baseball, Chicago Cubs, Packers and Highbury Arsenal fan. In addition to capturing random moments with whatever camera is close by (usually his iPhone), his other interests include coffee, film, music, and traveling in seats 5E and 5F with his fiancé.
  • ivan

    Hopefully not affiliated with Photoscape for Windows, a great (and free) desktop app (

    • lifeinlofiblog

      I don't think so. The support link takes you to a placeholder — basically an ad for a web design company. I hope they don't code their sites as poorly as they code their apps.


  • Ed Hardy

    I gave one review but in the Canadian app store, I fully agreed with you Marty.


  • connectionfailure

    Thanks Marty, reviewing and shaming these apps needs to be done sometimes.

  • George Avery

    The word about this horrible app definitely needs to be spread. $0.99 is getting harder to come by for some ! REFUND