On the Android market alone, you could probably dig up hundreds upon hundreds of camera applications. And each and every one of those applications does the exact same thing. Take pictures one at a time! How boring is that? If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video worth a million. Therefore, that is exactly why this whole review is dedicated to PhotoSequence Pro, “Better than a photo, more fun than a video.”
The app starts out with a nifty twist to any normal camera. With only 3 buttons and the viewfinder, PhotoSequence Pro is the perfect combination of power and ease. To take one still image, simply tap the big button. To take a “photo sequence”, hold the button down to capture. After the images have been captured and loaded into the gallery, just swipe your finger to determine the speed and direction of the video. Yes, you can watch your video backward at high speeds.
On top of that, PhotoSequence allows for adding FX’s to your sequences right in the app. In addition, while your playing around with different FX, feel free to create a collage with one-click. And when your done, bitRibelle Ltd is already working on adding the ability to share entire photosequences with your friends on the web. To join the “early beta” for this feature, feel free to sign-up by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To get an idea of the crazy things you can do with PhotoSequence pro, the developers put together a nice video of some sweet demos.
With the new update (2.0.1), PhotoSequence Pro is now compatible with Android versions 2.0 to 4.0. With its 24 reviews, PhotoSequence Pro has managed to rack up an impressive 4.1 star rating. In addition, users are now allowed to capture up to 150 frames in each sequence. Not to mention live previews of all of the FX.
As always, you can pick up PhotoSequence Pro or PhotoSequence Lite in the Android Market. BitRibelle Ltd has agreed to put the app on sale at $1.49, down from $1.99, just for us and our viewers of course (Just kidding, the sale is for all Android owners). The sale will last for the whole (long) weekend. That is from now, Friday, until Sunday (December 11th). However, if you just want to take the app for a test run before you take on the Pro version, feel free to get PhotoSequence Lite for free.
To gain some more information about the application and the work that went into it, we conducted a full review with the makers of PhotoSequence Pro:
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you got into Android development.
My name is Gianluca and I’m the founder of bitRibelle, a small startup based in London. We are a very small team of people that were tired of working for big companies and wanted to try something different. I’m personally a big fan of open platforms and mobile devices so Android was a perfect match! I’ve bought a G1 when it first came out and I’ve been using Android phones since.
2. What initially attracted you to the platform?
The biggest reason for me was the openness of the platform. The ability to look at the source code if you get stuck with a problem and the fact that you don’t need any approval from the market removes a lot of headaches for a developer.
I’ve been working in the game industry for over 10 years. Game consoles are traditionally a very closed environment and that closeness makes it very difficult to exchange knowledge and ideas with other developers. Moving to Android we discovered a new ecosystem. Most of the times you get stuck there is always someone that has the same problem with an answer on stackoverflow; there are so many Android developers around and there is always a meetup or a conference where you can talk to other developers and learn more.
3. What are some of the apps you have created and how did you market those applications?
PhotoSequence Pro is our first app for Android. We are still learning the lessons on how to market a product and we are trying different strategies. We go to conferences and events to show the app to as many people as possible. We also get in touch with bloggers and websites that talk about Android to spread the word. We believe that a great product can market itself but it still needs that initial spark in order to get enough people interested.
4. What are you planning next for Android?
We are constantly improving PhotoSequence and there is a big list of things that we would like to add.
We are also thinking about new quirky apps to make and we have a few prototypes that might make it into a full product.
Also, given our experience with game development, we know that at some point we are going to start working on a game.
5. When you first started learning development for Android what were some of the obstacles you had to overcome?
I’ve been programming in C and C++ for a long time and Java was not my favourite language at first. It took me a while to get a deeper understanding of Android and learn how things should be done. One of the biggest obstacles with PhotoSequence was to figure out how to keep so many images in memory at once. It really helped to read through the source code of the Android framework to understand how things work. We were able to better understand memory allocation and see where we could make the biggest savings in terms of memory.
6. What does it take to make a great app?
I think you need to solve a real problem with your app. We started working on PhotoSequence because we wanted to take better pictures when skateboarding and nothing on the market was good enough for that. We than started prototyping the idea and see how fast we could actually capture and store the images with an Android phone.
While working on the prototype we than realized that a photosequence is not just good for skateboarding but can also be used in a wide variety of situations like sports, panoramas, birthdays, nature and so on.
Once you know you have an app you want to use than it’s important to iterate and make sure other people can see the potential of the app. We could have released PhotoSequence a month earlier but we decided to improve the design and make sure we were proud of what we released.
6. How do you choose your pricing?
We studied the market first and checked the price of similar apps to make sure we could offer a better price-per-feature ratio.
We also constantly make adjustments with small variations of the price and run small experiments like sales and special offers to help generate more interest.
A great feature of the Android market is the ability to set the price for each country. We always try to tweak the price for each market to make sure that we have an optimal price across all the countries.
7. What do you recommend for new developers?
We believe that there is never been a better time to be a small and independent developer. There are plenty of platforms and markets where a good idea can become a successful product.
I recommend giving it a try. Just make sure you have enough passion to get past the though times. Even if the app doesn’t reach the charts you will still get valuable experience out of it.
For Android in particular, I recommend to test your app on as many devices as possible before releasing on the market. I know it sounds obvious but it’s so tempting to “release the app and hope for the best” rather than taking the time to test the app properly beforehand.
8. What are your thoughts on the upcoming software: Ice Cream Sandwich?
We always look forward to new releases. We have seen improvements to the camera API with every major release and we hope that Google will expose more low level camera functionality with Ice Cream Sandwich.
We are expecting improvements to the graphics rendering using GPU hardware acceleration, something that Google has already started doing on Honeycomb but that doesn’t apply yet to phones.
Finally we can’t wait to put our hands on the new Nexus phone, whenever it comes out.
PhotoSequence Pro is definitely one of the most complex, but easy to use camera applications. Although the app is based off of taking numerous fast still images, the possibilities are endless. Making movies, getting the right shot, and adding FX have never been easier. Not to mention the fact that “Photosequence Pro is the fastest camera on the Android market”. With the sale in place ($1.49) until Sunday, we highly suggest that you go pick up PhotoSequence Pro in the Android Market. If you’re not quite sure yet, don’t hesitate to get the lite version absolutely free!