Alive! review: add filters and effects to your Live Photos

By , Dec 7, 2015

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Live Photos is a cool new feature available on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. However, it is not exclusive to those devices. Thanks to third-party apps like Live Pictures and jailbreak tweaks like EnableLivePhotos, even older devices running iOS 9 can take advantage of creating Live Photos.

Alive! is a photo editing app specifically designed for Live Photos. Whether you’ve taken them on an iPhone 6s, or an older device with a third-party app or jailbreak tweak, or even if someone sent you a Live Photo, you can edit them using this app. We’ve got a hands-on review of Alive! for you today.

Concept

This may be the first of its kind (although I’m sure if it isn’t, someone will let me know in the comment section). It is an effects and filters app that lets you edit Live Photos. After you’ve created one, you can open the app and add an overlay or adjust the lighting for a unique look.

Design

The app is simple and easy to use without being cluttered with too many buttons or icons. Adjusting effects requires one simple action. There are three categories at the bottom of the screen, filters, editing tools, and volume. Each category has a list of options easily accessible just above the category you have selected.

The only other screen is the Live Photos selection screen where all Live Photos from your iPhone’s library are aggregated.

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App Use

First, take a Live Photo. Then, open Alive! and select it from the Live Photos selection screen. Then, select one of 29 filter options for a whole new look.

Tap the wrench icon to access the adjustment tools. You can increase or decrease the brightness, contrast, saturation, warmth, sharpness, highlights, and shadows. You can also add a vignette effect.

If you don’t like the audio that was recorded with the Live Photo, tap the volume icon and drop it down to zero.

Then, tap the Share icon at the top of the screen to save your project. You can either save it to your photo library as a new Live Photo, a regular photo (you can’t choose an exact still image), or export it as a movie file or a GIF.

Movie files can be directly shared to Facebook or YouTube. GIFs can be directly shared to Twitter. Both can be shared in other ways through Apple’s App Extension feature.

Incidentally, you can layer on top of layer with this app. Just for fun, I kept editing each new Live Photo that was created from a previous edit until I had a highly contrasted, black-and-white image with a sandy colored hue.

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The Good

This is the first time I’ve seen an app that allows you to edit Live Photos. So, it’s a winner, simply because of this.

Additionally, all of the features of this app work as they are supposed to. I did not come across any bugs or glitches that affected my experience.

I used this app on an iPhone 5s with Live Photos that I took using the Live Pictures app. So, I can verify that it works seamlessly with non-iPhone 6s devices.

The Bad

The only downside, and it’s a small one, is that the app is still somewhat limited. It has all of the basic features you’d want in a photo editing app, but none of the extras. Hopefully, the developer will continue adding new features to make this a more robust Live Photos editing app.

It would also be nice if it supported landscape mode.

Value

Alive! costs $1.99, which is totally reasonable for an app of this caliber.

Conclusion

I highly recommend this app if you have any Live Photos in your photo library (whether on an iPhone 6s or not). The ability to remove the sound is priceless in itself. Plus, you can add just the slightest adjustments to your image for an improved look. Download it in the App Store today.

What do you think of this Live Photo editing tool? Let us know in the comments.

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  • diggitydang

    Requires iOS9.1 to use so those that are jailbroken won’t be able to use it yet…

    • Jayy

      That probably explains why I don’t see it in my App Store.