The photo effect craze has taken off and how! Flickr has jumped on to the bandwagon, making several changes to its iOS app over the last week, including adding photo filter features.

Last week, Flickr gave its iOS app a complete make-over, releasing a new, cleaner user interface and effect tools in Flickr version 2.0. Seemingly inspired by Instagram, the Yahoo owned photo sharing website added filters to add effects to images while uploading them. There are 16 unique camera filters that can be used in Flickr now. Coincidentally, the filters are powered by Aviary, the service that Twitter too has tied up with for its own app.

Quite like Instagram, the Flickr app shows you interesting photos near your location. Not to forget, the double tap to favourite an image seems pretty inspired too. Yahoo has also added Groups capabilities amongst other features that were by far available only through the website.

The brand new Flickr UI

The brand new Flickr UI

Within a week of the new Flickr release, a speedy update to make a good app even better was released on December 19. Flickr’s social connect seems to be in focus during this update as the ability to find your Twitter and Facebook contacts have been added to the app. Sharing and visibility functions too have received a shot in the arm with version 2.01.772.

Here is a complete list of changes in this version, included based on user feedback:

  • Better visibility of photo upload status
  • It’s now easier than ever to share your Flickr photos on Facebook
  • Get instant notifications when your Facebook friends join Flickr
  • Easily find your Twitter contacts on Flickr
  • New notifications when someone comments on a photo you’ve also commented on
  • Fixed issues with Google sign-in
  • other bug fixes

Surprisingly, there hasn’t been an iPad app announced yet, though speculations are rife that there will be one made soon.

The app has undergone this facelift right when the market seems to be ready to embrace it back with open arms. Instagram, the Flickr competitor, has been going through tumultuous times with its tiff with Twitter and new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service controversy.

Instagram halted card support to Twitter earlier this month, with Instagram images not showing up in tweets. The photo sharing app taken over by Facebook has been rolling out its own web profiles and halted card support to Twitter to drive the traffic up on its own site.

This week too, Instagram seems to be struggling with bad publicity over ‘language confusion’ in its new Terms of Services. Going by the original blog post, it looked like Instagram was going to use images posted by users in advertisements or for generating revenue by selling them off. Many Instagram users were up in arms and quit the service on reading the blog post. Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom promptly tried to clear the air, explaining that Instagram will never own user images, but the damage had been done.

Flickr has been a favourite for professional and amateur photographers alike for displaying their images, but the addition of filters and social features will probably get the camera phone photographer to adopt it too. The more (services) the merrier, we say! The user is spoilt for choice after all.

Download the updated app from the iOS App Store here.

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