PhotoPen has a simple concept: mark up your photos and share them on your iPhone, for free.
You can choose pictures from your library, or take snapshots with the camera. The photos can then be annotated freehand, or using a resizable cloud, square, or circle shape. There is also a calendar-shaped watermark button, which allows you to date and tag your photos with custom resizable text.
I appreciated the app’s intention, and while it’s free, its execution still needs work. The first problem I noticed is that pictures taken in landscape mode aren’t formatted properly in the app. Here is a picture that demonstrates this concern:
As shown, the photo is pushed to the top, instead of centered on the screen. I added a big question mark to highlight the problem. Another issue is that the controls are not particularly robust; there were times when it was difficult or impossible to resize or delete an annotation. It is also necessary to individually delete the annotations. It would have been nice to have a “clear all” button, as well as the option for a full screen preview mode.
My favorite part of the app was the watermark option, as I found it helpful to be able to type in a custom text annotation, instead of relying on my freehand writing, which is difficult to do on the iPhone’s tiny screen. However, instead of the watermark, I would have preferred a printed text box, which I could move anywhere on the screen and resize, as needed.
Finally, the app could use more options, such as the ability to write in a pen color besides red. On its iTunes page, there is a note, which states, “If you’d like to see more color options and line thickness, please review this app with 5 stars!” I don’t think this is a five star app, but I hope it gets updated. It has the potential to become useful.