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TouchRetouch: A powerful photo retouching app for the iPhone and iPad

Do you have photos on your phone that need a little 'help' without going back to your Mac for iPhoto clean up or Photoshop work? It happens to me all the time, and TouchRetouch for US$0.99 gives you some powerful tools to remove defects, people or objects from photos with only a little effort. It is especially nice when you are on an outing or vacation and want to get some photos emailed to friends or uploaded to a sharing site, but the photos aren't as perfect as you would like.

TouchRetouch lets you load an image from your camera roll, and using your fingers, either draw a lasso around the offending part of the photo or use a brush to highlight it. Using some smart software, the object or person will be removed, while the background is intelligently filled in. It's similar to Content Aware Fill on the new Photoshop CS5, but this app costs a lot less money. The software has unlimited undo, and you can erase all or portions of the mask that you create. When you're done, you can save the photo back to your camera roll or email it directly from within the app. The app also supports sharing on Facebook, Flickr, Picasa and Twitter

TouchRetouch has built-in video tutorials and a clone tool to repair parts of an image that the retouching process doesn't fix perfectly.


Using the app was satisfying. I was able to remove a mailbox and some rocks with some backgrounds that would reveal any trickery. You can see the results in the gallery. The app is doing a lot of heavy lifting in the processing department, so if you have a full resolution image, expect it to take a minute or so to do its work. I liked the results. I've used the retouch tool in iPhoto, and frankly, this app is far superior for removing larger objects. It's actually close to what Photoshop can do, which is pretty amazing for an inexpensive app.

TouchRetouch comes in both an iPhone/iPod touch version and an HD version for the iPad. The app is not universal, so if you want the regular and HD version you will pay $0.99 twice. I liked doing the retouching better on the larger iPad screen, but I had absolutely no problem doing the work on the iPhone since I could zoom in very tightly to make the edits.

There is also a free version for the iPhone that lets you test the app, but it leaves a watermark on the finished photo. I'm impressed with this little app. It's not a substitute for the sophistication of Photoshop tools, but it works very well when all you have is your iPhone or iPad. If you find yourself wanting to touch up photos and send them out without having to download them to a computer, this is the app for you.

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