ShakeItPhoto iPhone iPod TouchI know Marty hates rumors, but there’s evidence in the official ShakeItPhoto Facebook page and the Flickr Stream of Banana Camera Co’s Alexia Brown to support this. The latest update to popular instant camera app ShakeItPhoto, which is currently awaiting Apple approval, will feature a revised border much more reminiscent of the traditional Polaroid border.

New ShakeItPhoto border

Credit: Alexia Brown (Banana Camera Co)

Unlike ShakeItPhoto’s current border, it appears the new border features a much larger bottom area, reminiscent of what you’d get right out of a good old SX-70 (I’m thinking LabelBox might get some solid mileage out of this change in my own photography, I can’t resist the opportunity for a sassy aside). If you take a close look at the bottom area, though, there’s a noticeable line right about where the older border would have ended, which makes me wonder if the new one was simply clone-stamped into new dimensions.

Banana Camera Co, the developer of ShakeItPhoto, proudly makes simple photography apps. Their products do one thing, but they do them beautifully. The saturation, vignette and subtle shadow as if a real paper border surrounded the photo made me love ShakeItPhoto instantly. But this devotion to simplicity as a concept is both their amazing strength and their potential weakness.

Unfortunately, their devotion to the simplicity mantra sometimes puts simplicity before user experience, and this has me worried. The ShakeItPhoto 1.3 update featured a totally revised photo processing algorithm, without any warning to users and without the simple inclusion of a toggle to select the old one. The fallout from users who felt ambushed by the change was massive, and to their credit Banana Camera Co engaged in discussion with their users and decided to revert to the old algorithm. Given past history, it seems likely that this new border will come at the expense of the current border style.

New ShakeItPhoto border

Credit: Alexia Brown (Banana Camera Co.)

There’s also the fact that Apple has put the kibosh on apps that offer super realistic Polaroid-style borders (such as forcing PictureShow to remove their Instant 1 filter from the latest 3.0 update). The update is currently waiting for approval, and it will actually be interesting to see if it gets blocked or not since the border really looks like an old-school Polaroid (texture and border ratio are pretty much bang-on).

Personally, I’m on the fence about this update. ShakeItPhoto and CrossProcess have gorgeous processing that enhances rather than overpowering virtually any photograph. I love them. But I also think that when you remove an existing feature to make room for a new alternative, rather than adding it as an option, that’s just lazy programming and often poor user experience. Still, anybody with the vision to write those filter algorithms will hopefully (eventually?) have the vision to make their apps the sort of simple that users appreciate rather than suffer through.

What do you think? Is it worth losing the current ShakeItPhoto frame for this new, more historically accurate one?