Photos for OS X (screenshot 001)

Apple’s surprise announcement that it will cease development of its Aperture app in favor of Photos for OS X Yosemite has left watchers scratching their head. There’s also the problem of prosumers and iPhone photography enthusiasts, many of whom have grown dependent on Aperture workflows.

The problem is even more pronounced given concerns that any feature-parity between Photos on iOS 8 and the upcoming Photos for OS X Yosemite Macs would inevitably lead to significant dumbing down compared to Aperture’s feature set.

Case in point: the iWork for iCloud effect.

Anyway, Apple has now official confirmed via a written statement that Photos for Mac will include certain pro-grade features such as photo editing, image search and third-party effects and plugins…

An Apple representative said this in a statement to ArsTechnica, via MacRumors.

When asked about what Aperture-like features users can expect from the new Photos app, an Apple representative mentioned plans for professional-grade features such as image search, editing, effects, and most notably, third-party extensibility.

The representative also clarified the timeframe when Aperture development will end, along with an announcement about its other Pro app offerings receiving updates today.

Third-party extensibility is pretty much a no-brainer considering that new iOS 8 APIs allow developers to write third-party photo and video effects for the stock Photos app.

From Apple’s iOS 8 for Developers webpage:

Embed your filters and editing tools directly into the Photos app, so users can easily apply your effects to images and videos without having to import them into your app.

Third-party effects will be non-destructive so you’ll be able to undo the changes, similar to how Apple-produced effects applied to your images within iOS Photos are undoable.

iOS 8 Photos search

Theoretically speaking, if a developer releases the same set of filters for both Photos for iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, and with iCloud Photos enabled, you should be able to apply filters to Camera roll images on your iPhone and then undo the changes on your Mac.

Photos will release early next year for OS X Yosemite systems.

Apple’s Aperture announcement last week was accompanied by a new screenshot of the software.

As seen top of post, it depicts a bunch of common photo editing effects like Exposure, Highlights, Shadows, Brightness, Contrast, Blacks, Saturation, Contrast, Cast, Hue Strength, Neutral Boost, Photo Tone, Grain, Definition, Vignette, White Balance and Levels.

Who’s looking forward to Photos for Mac?