Use powerful presets and editing tools on mobile to make beautiful photos and videos.
- Excellent tools and filters
- Useful asset-management options
- Social sharing to a wide range of networks
- The android camera feature not as robust as iOS version
- Can’t share several pictures simultaneously on iOS
- No frames, text or funky special effects
- Crop tool works only with preset aspect ratios
|How to uninstall|
- Skin Tone
- Shadows Tint
- Highlights Tint
VSCO is a place to express yourself, make beautiful photo and video, and connect with a creative community. Edit with a variety of mobile presets and tools while exploring original content made by creators around the world.
VSCO offers only 10 high-quality photographic filters (as opposed to special effects), which alter exposure, color, dynamic range and such. Unfortunately, their icon labels are obscurely named, such as B1, M3, and X1. Tap once on a filter’s icon and it applies full strength to your picture. Double-tap to access a fade slider (to control the intensity of the filter) and display a slightly more descriptive name, such as Portraits, Moody or Classic. A shopping basket icon takes you online where you can download more filters; some are free, most for 99 cents, and the full package costs $6.
The Tools menu includes traditional photography edit options, such as Exposure, Contrast, Straighten, Crop, Sharpen, Saturation, Highlights Save, Shadows Save, Color Temperature, Tint and Fade. Most tools have sliders for user control. Generally speaking, these tools are flexible and deliver good image quality. For instance, Skin Tone is a nicely subtle tool that adjusted the tonality of the flesh in our portrait (warming or cooling it) with very natural results. However, the Crop tool works only with preset aspect ratios with no free-form option.
Not only can you undo all your edits to a picture, but you can also reverse your most recent edit. In fact, unlike the other apps in this roundup, all edits are nondestructive, and even after you have saved your image you can go back to edit, such as for sharpness, and adjust the intensity or remove it completely.
VSCO is photography-centric and doesn’t have some of the tools many have come to expect from popular photo apps, such as a text tool, stickers or other fun options. For instance, while the app has a simple Vignette slider that slightly darkens your picture’s edges, it has no frames or other Vignette options (such as white instead of black, size or depth). However, in our tests, we were impressed with the image quality that the tools and filters delivered, producing images that didn’t look edited. Instead, they were simply better photographs than our originals.
Sharing is another area in which the Android and Apple versions of VSCO differ, though both tend to offer among the most versatile sharing options in this roundup of apps. Both can multi-save to your device’s gallery. However, the Android’s Photo Library’s multi-select is an unusual, nice time-saver that allows you to share groups of photos at once to Facebook, WeChat, Google+ and via email. On the iOS version, the only social network-sharing option for multiple images is Facebook. Both apps let you share individual images to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, email, and using apps installed on your phone or tablet. The iOS version also shares to Weibo.
When you share to VSCO’s website, your photos may or may not be shown to the public on the curated Grid. The Grid isn’t really a community, because you can’t like or comment on the displayed photos. And the process of how photos are selected for the Grid is not revealed, though the quality of those chosen is clearly quite high. However, you can share the link to your own photos on the site with friends and on social networks.
VSCO is great for editing the traditional photographic aspects of your pictures, such as exposure, sharpness, and color.