Last week, Adobe has launched an online version of Photoshop called Photoshop Express. Of course, it’s an image editing tool, based heavily on Flash/Flex technologies and it’s still in the beta version. They have a Test Drive module that lets you try out some of it’s features, but you’ll be able to have full access once you sign in to your account.
Personally, I really like the interface they’ve designed. It’s really clean and elegant. All the elements of the screen are placed in such a way that you can concentrate on your image editing. A really nice feature is the ability to upload and store your images (up to 2 GB) and organize them into galleries. You can also import images from other sites like Facebook, Photobucket or Picasa. It’s also great that Adobe left all the features free and didn’t put a price on some of them.
Overall, it’s similar to Picnik, another Flash enabled online photo editor which which lacks the ability of creating your own albums but it has more effects to apply on images. Also it can access images from Flickr albums and you can save the edited image back to one of your albums on MySpace, Picasa, Flickr, Facebook, Photobucket or your computer. In Picnik’s case, you need to buy a premium service to be able to have access to all the functionalities.
Right now, there’s a huge difference between the number of features of the online tool (Photoshop Express) and the ones of the offline software package (Adobe Photoshop CS3). But this online version wasn’t intended for the professional photo editors or designers. I believe it’s quite ok for occasional photo editing done by beginners who only what to tweak a little their photos before publishing them online.
Time will tell which one of the two online editors will get more attention from the public. Photoshop Express has behind it an experienced team in creating photo editing tools and all the features are for free. Further more, it offers 2 GB of space to the users to save and share their photos. Picnik on the other hand is more feature rich, but it comes with price. Try them out and decide for yourself which one is best for you.