Lightroom for iOS could finally aim the iPad at professionals

Despite massive sales in both the U.S. and worldwide markets, Apple's iPad is still marketed largely as a consumer device. With regards to more professional tasks like document editing and photo manipulation, Apple's tablet falls far short of the capabilities of Microsoft's Surface Pro, which can run full PC programs. 

Today, however, this could show signs of changing, with Adobe demonstrating a version of Lightroom running on an iPad. The full version of Lightroom, now on version 4, incorporates many of the features of Photoshop in a package that also acts as a virtual library for your images.

Tom Hogarty, Adobe's group product manager, appeared on photography web show The Grid to demonstrate an early iteration of the Lightroom mobile app. Despite the fact the app appears to clearly be in the early stages of development, most features users would expect were available for demonstration. 

Hogarty demonstrated the app on a second-generation iPad (non-Retina), which, while seemingly able to complete the tasks of adjusting shadows, highlights and temperature of RAW images from a Canon 5D Mark III, would likely struggle under continuous use. Hogarty himself admitted that some functions might cause the device to struggle:

Attempting some of the functions that are not optimized for the mobile version would likely make the iPad explode!

Lightroom on the iPad could make it possible for photographers to manipulate RAW files on the go. RAW is the preferred format for professionals given the fact that it conserves all possible data from the point at which the shot is taken.

At present, the only significant facility available to edit photos on Apple's tablet is Photoshop Express for iOS or iPhoto. Both applications offer a basic level of photo editing tools, but neither are able to manipulate RAW images as large as the Lightroom prototype demonstrated it was capable of handling.

Neowin has contacted Adobe to ask if a release of Lightroom for iOS is coming any time soon, and we'll update this article at the point of any development.

Source: TechRadarImage via The Grid

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11 Comments

Although it would be cool don't expect it anytime time soon. As Tom said in the interview it's all quite a way off yet.

Unless they can do some seeeeerious optimizing it'd be really slow (or work on low-res copies or something like that). Even on my laptop Lightroom can get sluggish when editing 16MP RAW files (dualcore i5-460M, 8GB RAM, 2xSSD in RAID0).

It's just a highly cut down version of the desktop program. It probably don't even have 10% of the capabilities. And even my high-end hex core i7 PC can sometimes take a while to edit multiple 22MP images in Lightroom, so a iPad is going to be ridiculous to use.

This is joke no serious photographer would even consider using this. If i wanted a mobile tablet-like device for this stuff then the Surface Pro is an infinitely better option. But i prefer my Asus Taichi as it can function like a tablet but also has dual screens so i easily show models the photo's while they're infront of the camera by mirroring the displays.

W32.Backdoor.KillAV.E said,
This is joke no serious photographer would even consider using this.

But it would go SOOOOOOOOO well with Instagram!!1!

Uggh. No thanks. Lightroom stays on my beefy computer rig, because it's not only a great editor, it's a catalogue programme as well

A total non starter of an idea, however would you transfer the RAW files to,the iPad for a start?

No serious photographer would even entertain such an idea - for starters as the above poster mentions.. most will shoot in RAW

I can't imagine how bad that would be, it can slow down like heck on my Ivy Bridge i7 system with 16GB of RAM.. if that has problems at times, I can't imagine an ARM processor doing it fast..

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