The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (2023)

Launched in 2002 by tech company Ideas Lab and sold to Google two years later, Picasa was originally an application that managed photo storage on users' own computers as well as offering editing features.

However, what made Picasa unique when it launched was that it also allowed users to create photo albums online, share them with friends and add them to websites. This, together with its simple-to-use interface, meant it offered something to suit everyone's needs. The icing on the cake? It was free.

But in February 2016 Google said it would no longer support Picasa's offline storage and editing features, and would migrate users to its own cloud-based Google Photos app.

Below, we've rounded up some of the best free and paid-for editing apps that can help you move on from Picasa.

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The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (1)

Alternatives to Picasa

Best for editing images on your device

  • Adobe Photoshop - From £10 a month / Windows, Mac
  • Photoshop Elements - £80 / Windows, Mac
  • Photoshop Express - Free, with in-app purchases / Android, iOS
The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (2)
(Video) BEST FREE Photo Editing Software for PC

Adobe's Photoshop is a firm favourite among both professionals and amateurs for manipulating and editing digital images. Photoshop is the creative professional tool, which you can buy as part of a Creative Cloud subscription as a single app or as part of a package with other Adobe applications. Photoshop Elements, a standalone version of Photoshop for a one-off price, is aimed at knowledgeable amateurs. Photoshop Express is a free mobile app (you need to create an Adobe account to use it) that offers lots of options on your phone or tablet.

As well as traditional correctional tools, it also gives users the option to get creative with photos. It lets you crop, colour correct, add captions, filters, coloured backgrounds and even draw on the screen.

All the apps will take time to get to grips with, but offer plenty of features to dig into.

Best for advanced editing and managing a photo library

  • Adobe Lightroom - From £9.98 a month / Windows, Mac Free, in-app purchases / iOS, Android
The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (3)

Lightroom is another string to Adobe's bow, offering photo library management and editing tools that allow you to apply corrections to more than one photo at a time. This is aimed at professionals, and the mobile apps, which are free to download, are designed to help pro photographers manage their workflow on the move. You can do some basic editing such as cropping, applying filters and sharpening for free, and pay to upgrade to more advanced editing features.

Lightroom on desktops aims to streamline big photo libraries and batch editing, and integrates with Photoshop, if you have it, for when you need more detailed or powerful pixel-level editing tools

Best for storage

  • Google Photos - Free (15GB storage) / Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, ChromeOS
The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (4)
(Video) Switching from Google Photos: what are the alternatives?

Google Photos replaced Picasa as Google's own photo management and editing app in 2016. While it lacks some of Picasa's most-loved features, it does offer editing tools such as cropping and rotating images, filters to change the overall look of the photo and the ability to write and draw on images - although the Picasa caption tool is no more

Google Photos' biggest appeal is that it's cloud-based, which means your photos are available on any compatible device: you can either use the mobile app or a web browser to access your photos. The service has hitherto offered unlimited free storage if you select the 'high-quality' setting (images are a maximum of 16Mp, and any over that size will be compressed down. Videos are stored in 1080p high definition), although Google has recently announced that it is to limit free storage to 15GB - although photos uploaded before June 2021 won't count towards that limit. You can add paid-for storage if you want to add best quality images and videos.

Google uses AI to tag your images, which means its search is very powerful. It can, for example, identify photos of the same person, which you can then label with their name. You can also search by location and even the contents of photos - for example, 'churches in Spain'.

The software also creates albums automatically and even photobooks, which you can then order to be printed.

Best for quick & playful edits

  • Pixlr Basic - Some tools are free, premium from $3.99 a month / Mobile app is free, but ad-supported; in-app purchases / Online, or app for iOS and Android
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Pixlr offers browser-based editing via two online apps. Pixlr X is for more 'playful' edits such as applying effects, cropping, removing blemishes and adding text to photos. The more advanced Pixlr E has an interface similar to Photoshop's. The former is easy to get to grips with and quick to use, but also suitable for those with more advanced skills.

(Video) How to get the Best FREE Photo Editing Software

There's no photo management option: edits you do via this tool have to be saved to your hard drive, but you can share them directly to social media accounts from the browser.

Best for advanced editing

  • Gimp - Free / Windows, Mac, Linux
The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (6)

Gimp is a powerful free open-source alternative to Photoshop, popular with amateurs and those with more advanced skills. As it's open-source, its community contributes to and maintains it.

It offers a lot of functions but isn't the most immediately user-friendly software. Be prepared to spend time getting to know it - beginners to image editing might find it overwhelming.

As it's open-source, anyone can take the code and develop a version, so there are mobile versions in the iOS App Store and the Google Play store, but those are often ad-supported and/or offer in-app purchases.

Best for storage & managing your photos on your PC

  • Phototheca - Free. $39.95 for advanced features / Windows only

One of the key appeals of Phototheca, which runs on your Windows PC (aside from being free) is that it makes storing photos straightforward.

Phototheca's filing system is simple and efficient. Once you've imported your photos (there's a maximum of 5,000 allowed in the free version), it will then encourage you to add tags your images.

The more you tag, the more organised your library will be.

Phototheca also uses AI to categorise your photos and make searching easier, and uses that to sort photos into albums.

Best for storage

  • Dropbox - Basic service free, upgrades from £7.99 a month / Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
The best alternatives to Picasa: free editing apps for PC and mobile compared - Which? News (8)

Dropbox is one of the many cloud-based options you have if you're looking to store images and share them with others. It also lets you connect online image-editing tools such as Pixlr to your Dropbox account, meaning you can do some editing of your images stored there and save your edits back to your Dropbox storage.

Dropbox is useful if you want to share images, and if you want to access your stored pictures across all your devices.

The free tier only gives you 2GB of storage, which you'll use up quickly, but you can add more with the paid plans.

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Can I still download Picasa?

It's very tempting to download the versions of Picasa that you can find on third-party software sites, but we don't recommend this, for two reasons.

First, it's no longer supported by Google, which means it hasn't had any security patches since it was discontinued. That means not only will any existing security holes not be fixed, but also should cybercriminals discover more holes, those won't be patched either. Using unsupported software puts you at risk from hackers.

Second, software from third-party sites often comes bundled with extra programs such as adware, browser banners and other PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs), or even malware. Always download software from its official website.

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FAQs

What is the best free alternative to Picasa? ›

If you're looking for intuitive and versatile photo management software, here are the five best alternatives to Picasa™ that you can use in 2022.
  1. ACDSee – Photo Studio Home. ...
  2. Adobe® Lightroom™ CC. ...
  3. Luminar™ 4. ...
  4. Google™ Photos. ...
  5. Darktable.
20 Sept 2022

Which is the best photo editing app for PC for free? ›

We think Photoscape X is the best free photo editing software for anyone who needs to edit multiple images at once. While you can batch edit pictures using any of Photoscape's tools, it comes with dedicated tools for the most common batch tools, such as Batch Resize, Batch Rename, and Batch Format Change.

Which app is best for photo editing in mobile for free? ›

YouCam Perfect is one of the best free photo editors equipped with AI-powered photo editing and beautifying tools. It allows you to edit photos on either iPhone or Android with a wide variety of effects, animations, collages, and more!

Which is best for photo editing mobile or PC? ›

To get to the short of it, editing on your computer is the better option. Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom are the best photo editing tools on the market. But, they're expensive and the full suite of tools is only available with a PC. So, in some cases it turns out editing on your phone could be the way to go for you.

What is Picasa app used for? ›

Picasa is free photo management software from Google that helps you find, edit and share your photos in seconds.

What is Picasa called now? ›

Albums that you've already synced to Picasa Web Albums are already in Google Photos. Picasa no longer works online, so you will not be able to add or sync albums or individual photos. Learn how to back up photos and videos to Google Photos.

What is a good editing app on PC? ›

Best photo and video editing apps
  • Save $5.00. Movie Maker - Video Editor PRO. ...
  • Adobe Lightroom. FreeOffers in app purchases. ...
  • Animotica - Movie Maker. FreeOffers in app purchases. ...
  • Clipchamp - Video Editor. Free. ...
  • Phototastic Collage. ...
  • Polarr Pro Photo Editor. ...
  • Ultimate Photo Editor. ...
  • crazy video maker 2 - video editor & movie maker.

Which app is used for editing photos on PC? ›

BEST Photo Editor App & Software for PC
NamePlatformLayers
👍 Adobe Photoshop Express EditorAndroid, ioS, Windows, MacYes
CanvaWindows, Mac, iOSYes
LightroomWindows, GNU/Linux, OS XYes
DxO PhotoLabWindows + MacYes
1 more row

Is Photoshop free on mobile? ›

Yes, Photoshop is free to download and use on Android devices. However, some features, such as filters and brushes, may require a subscription to Adobe's Creative Cloud service.

Which is best mobile or PC? ›

Desktop and laptop computers can run more powerful software than a smartphone or tablet due to their size, components, and less restrictive power requirements. While smartphones and tablets are getting more powerful every year, they still can't match a traditional laptop or desktop computer in terms of performance.

Which is the No 1 photo editing app in Android? ›

Based on those points, here are the top 11 mobile apps for editing photos.
  • Adobe Lightroom Mobile (for iPhone) 3.5. ...
  • Adobe Photoshop Express. 3.5. ...
  • Afterlight. ...
  • Apple Photos. ...
  • Google Photos. ...
  • PicsArt Photo Studio (for Android) ...
  • Pixlr. ...
  • Polarr.

What is the best alternative to Picasa? ›

12 Best Picasa Alternatives in 2022
  • Luminar 4.
  • Adobe Lightroom.
  • Google Photos.
  • Darktable.
  • Adobe Photoshop Elements.
  • Zoner Photo Studio X.
  • Microsoft Photos.
  • Apple Photos.

Is there a Picasa app for Android? ›

It's a new world out there with cloud storage, iOS, Android, Windows 8RT, smartphones and tablets. Picasa is from the old world of computers.

Is Picasa now Google Photos? ›

Where can I find my photos? If you have photos or videos in a Picasa Web Album, the easiest way to still access, modify and share most of that content is to log in to Google Photos. Your photos and videos will already be there.

Is the Picasa app still available? ›

Is Picasa still available? Although it is now discontinued, Picasa is still available to download and use offline. Picasa was created by a company named Lifescape in 2002. In July 2004, Google acquired Picasa and began offering it as freeware.

What is PhotoStudio app? ›

PhotoStudio is a photo editor to edit any kind of images and graphics. It includes a image editing area with a multitude of photo editing features, effects, handcrafted filters and assets. It is based on IMGLY PhotoEditor. Its main features are: - Take pictures from your PC or laptop camera.

Does Google have a free photo editor? ›

You can select a photo, image file to edit from your computer or from Google Drive. Supports multiple files open. You can enhance your photos, apply effects, crop image, rotate, flip, and so much more.

What is the number 1 best editing app? ›

1. PicsArt (Android, iOS) PicsArt is our top pick of the best photo editing apps, because it's fun, easy to use, yet covers just about all the bases for consumer mobile photography. It provides lots of creative control, excellent image-editing tools and a large variety of attractive filters.

What is the top 1 editing app? ›

1. Google Snapseed (Android/iOS)
  • Powerful while easy-to-use.
  • Flexibel color, exposure, sharpening adjustments.
  • Editing features like crop, rotate, straighten.
  • Healing, Brush, Structure, HDR, Perspective.
30 Aug 2022

What is the most professional editing app? ›

The best video editing software in full
  1. Adobe Premiere Pro. The best video editing software for professional editors. ...
  2. CyberLink PowerDirector 365. The best video editing software for experienced non-pros. ...
  3. Adobe Premiere Elements. ...
  4. Pinnacle Studio. ...
  5. Final Cut Pro. ...
  6. Adobe Premiere Rush. ...
  7. Corel VideoStudio Ultimate. ...
  8. Filmora.
20 Oct 2022

What is the best program to edit photos? ›

The best photo editing software right now
  1. Photoshop. The best photo editing software overall. ...
  2. Affinity Photo. The best photo editing software that's subscription-free. ...
  3. CyberLink PhotoDirector 365. ...
  4. Luminar NEO. ...
  5. Luminar AI. ...
  6. inPixio Photo Studio 11. ...
  7. Pixlr X / Pixlr E. ...
  8. Corel PaintShop Pro.
26 Oct 2022

Which Photoshop is best for PC free? ›

17 best free Photoshop alternatives with Similar Features in 2022:
  • Luminar.
  • Apple Photos.
  • Microsoft Windows 10 Photos.
  • GIMP.
  • Photo Pos Pro.
  • RawTherapee.
  • Pixlr.
  • Paint.NET.

Which is the best Photoshop app for PC? ›

Top Photo Editing Software for PC
  • Adobe Photoshop - Standard photo editing software.
  • Adobe Lightroom - The best program for color correction.
  • GIMP - The best free photo editor like Photoshop.
  • InPixio - High-quality color correction on desktop.
  • Luminar - User-friendly interface.
  • Capture One Pro - All-in-one photo editor.

What is the most powerful free online image editor? ›

Photo editor, animation and design.

Welcome to Pixlr, the No 1 in photo editing and design tools. Edit photos and create stunning designs right in your browser, on your phone or desktop for free.

Which Photoshop is best in mobile? ›

Here's a list of the best Photoshop apps for smartphone photography:
  1. Snapseed. Download: iOS or Android. ...
  2. VSCO. VSCO is perfect if you like the film look. ...
  3. Adobe Photoshop Express. Adobe is well known for its excellent photo editing software with a great reputation. ...
  4. Afterlight 2. ...
  5. Lightroom CC Mobile. ...
  6. Touch Retouch. ...
  7. Darkroom.

Is there a totally free photo editing app? ›

Pixlr offers a solid assortment of photo editing tools for free, including crop, rotate, color and brightness adjustments, along with special effects like selective blur and spot color. There are also a variety of page templates and collages where you can drop and arrange photos.

Can I run Photoshop on mobile? ›

Now, you will be surprised to know that Photoshop is available for Android and iOS too. This makes it possible for you to edit your photos using Photoshop on your smartphone.

What is the difference between PC and mobile? ›

A major difference between a desktop and mobile device lies in a data plan vs. the need to have a constant wifi connection. Mobile devices have the advantage of being able to tap into a cellular network to stay connected to the web, while a desktop most of the time only has a WiFi connection to take advantage of.

What is the difference between desktop app and mobile app? ›

A desktop app runs on a stationary machine, or a laptop. On what we call "a computer". A mobile app is designed to run on mobile devices such as mobile phones or tablets - although they technically are computers as well- but have limitations when it comes to storage, connectivity, etc.

What is the difference between mobile computer and mobile device? ›

Unlike mobile computers (which can typically be customized for the company's purposes), smartphones are commercial-grade devices. Companies can download applications for their purposes onto their smartphone devices whereas mobile computers already come pre-loaded with the programs a company will need.

Who is the world best editor? ›

Top Grossing Editor at the Worldwide Box OfficeBETA
RankNameWorldwide Box Office
1Jeffrey Ford$13,570,711,139
2Michael Kahn$11,964,709,358
3Chris Lebenzon$8,201,687,047
4Lee Smith$7,993,896,283
78 more rows

Who is the No 1 photo editor? ›

Adobe Lightroom Mobile

The range of features makes Lightroom one of the best photo editing apps. The bonus is that the app itself is free. You can make use of a decent variety of standard editing tools as standard. A premium monthly subscription is available if you want to access the full range of tools.

Is Photoshop free for PC? ›

Is there a free version of Photoshop? Yes, you can download a 7-day free trial of Photoshop. The free trial is the official, full version of the app. It includes all the features and updates in the latest version of Photoshop.

What is the best free photo management software from Google? ›

List of the best free photo organizing software
  • Movavi Photo Editor.
  • Adobe Bridge CC.
  • Magix Photo Manager Deluxe.
  • Apple Photos.
  • Google Photos.
  • Digikam Photo Manager.
  • Nikon ViewNX-i.
  • Apowersoft Photo Viewer.
23 Aug 2022

What is the easiest free photo editor to use? ›

  • #1 – InPixio – We Have a New Winner for 2021!
  • #2) Fotor – The revolutionary photo editor.
  • #3) Gimp – Oh, How the Mighty Have Fallen.
  • #4) BeFunky – Fun is its Middle Name.
  • #5) Photoshop Express – Your Photoshop Fix. Just FREE.
  • #6) Canva – By Far the Easiest.
  • #7) Paint.net – Better than MS Paint! </h3.
  • #8) Pixlr.

Is Google Photos free on PC? ›

Choose free, unlimited cloud storage available at high quality, or store up to 15GB original size for free (shared across your Google account). Save Space on Your Device: Google Photos can help you clear safely backed up photos and videos from your device so you never have to worry about deleting a photo to make space.

What is the best free photo organizer for Windows 10? ›

Verdict: Magix Photo Manager is a simple, fast, and intuitive free photo organizer for Windows. It helps you classify, manage, and share your photo library by using the expanded import functionality and efficient image organizing tools. Additionally, it's supplied with a smart filter for quick, automatic sorting.

Does Google have a photo editor for PC? ›

Photo Editor - Google Workspace Marketplace. Photo Editor offers a variety of effects for your photos including Webcam Capture.

Which is the No 1 photo editing app? ›

Based on those points, here are the top 11 mobile apps for editing photos.
  • Adobe Lightroom Mobile (for iPhone) 3.5. ...
  • Adobe Photoshop Express. 3.5. ...
  • Afterlight. ...
  • Apple Photos. ...
  • Google Photos. ...
  • PicsArt Photo Studio (for Android) ...
  • Pixlr. ...
  • Polarr.

What is the closest free app to Photoshop? ›

17 best free Photoshop alternatives with Similar Features in 2022:
  • Luminar.
  • Apple Photos.
  • Microsoft Windows 10 Photos.
  • GIMP.
  • Photo Pos Pro.
  • RawTherapee.
  • Pixlr.
  • Paint.NET.

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