Best Apps to improve your iPhone Photography

iPhone HDR has developed ahead of its competition

We know that iPhone Photography is a thing nowadays. Everyone takes most of their pictures using their smartphone. When Apple announced iPhone Xs, Xs Max, and even Xr that used the same lens as Xs, I was surprised. Because of their A12 Bionic chip, they managed to pull off the right approach for computational photography using AI. For you who don’t know, Apple’s newest Smart HDR will combine several image and mix it to give the best dynamic range. They even can be previewed real-time.

However, there are still something missing. Such as manual control and the noise reduction algorithm makes your face is always in beauty mode. Luckily, there are some third-party apps out there, that I deemed as must-have if you are into photography with your iPhone.

Best Apps for iPhone Photography

1. Halide

This paid apps is worth the money. They don’t ask for subscription to fully use their features. They have what all photographers needs. You mention. Histogram, ISO, Shutter Speed, White Balance. They even supports RAW shooting. You might feel overwhelmed by the amount of controls they packed into this. But when you use it long enough, you will miss it.

Halide Manual Control to improve iPhone Photography

My favorite feature is their portrait mode. If you hate the annoying white box from Apple stock camera apps telling you to move further away, this is the perfect solution. Halide combines the technology from XR which uses PEM (Portrait Effect Matte) to detect object and combine it with the data from the depth sensor to create beautiful bokeh effect for every dual-camera iPhone. Speaking of XR, you have to download this app since this app will enable you to take not only a person as portrait but other objects as well.

2. Darkroom

You might think this is Lightroom rip-off. To be honest, it is better than Lightroom in terms of mobile image editing. Darkroom integrate deeply with Halide, so you can just edit your picture after you take it from Halide.

Darkroom Photo Editing App

My favorite feature is that you can adjust how much bokeh I want. I am using iPhone X and it doesn’t support the adjustable aperture feature like in the new iPhone. So this is the alternative. You can even edit the foreground and background objects in the image separately.


I have a feeling that you guys that play Instagram will know this app already. For those who doesn’t know, this app has many presets although you have to pay to unlock some presets. However, the free one is enough for me. Just make sure to adjust the preset filter, so it is not too intense and ruins your image.

I use this mainly to add some character to my image. They also have manual control like in Darkroom, but the grain effect from VSCO is the best in my opinion. VSCO also plays nicely with RAW image if that’s your thing.

Just a disclaimer, that I am not paid to write this. This is my honest experience as their user and I feel that I should give them a shoutout for this. Anyway, I included the link for download on each section.

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