Photoscan by Google Photos - Digitise your old photos the easy way


If you have old snaps stored in the traditional way of paper photographs, you may be looking forward to ways to make them eternal by saving them on the cloud, or digitise them in the best possible way. No worries - Google PhotoScan is the new offering from Google that aims to do just that.

Everyone of us has a huge collection of printed photographs. The major issue with those photographs is they fade over time and their quality degrades. Yes, you can scan those photographs and save them on the cloud. But, it may not be possible to maintain the quality.
Google sensed the need for a good app that scan your printed images and save them to the cloud. Photoscan by Google Photos is an app developed with an aim to turning your old prints into digital images. Launched just around a month ago, the app is available both on Android and iOS.

What is Photoscan by Google Photos?


Well, as you would have learnt by now, Photoscan is a new smartphone app developed by the team behind Google Photos. Google Photos, for the uninitiated, is the default image folder for the phones running on Android Marshmallow and later. Photoscan has been planned as a planned upgrade to Google Photos.



The Photoscan app will use your phone camera and flash to scan the printed photographs. The app can easily create digital photographs from your printed photographs. The performance is quite quick. The team behind Photoscan has claimed that they have been able to scan 100 photos in just under 10 minutes.
Photoscan by Google Photos is a new app of the block from Google. It has been released both for Android and iOS. You need to be on at least Android Lollipop 5.0 to be able to install this app on your device.

How does the app work?


Scanning the old pictures is not exactly an easy task. You need to get the lightening right. The flash needs to be exact, otherwise your photos get saved in an unwanted manner.
Google understands this issue. That is clearly proven by the technology it uses to scan your printed photos. The app takes four images of your print out and then aligns them together to arrive at a a single composite image. The app can restore the faded colors and perform minor tweaks to make the pictures more original.



As has been a constant feature with any Google app, Photoscan has a simple and easy to use interface. There are no flashy icons on the screen. The initial screen asks for your permission to use the camera and once you grant it, the first screen opens the camera like interface. There are a couple of icons - a big Capture button along woth a Flash icon. That's all for it.
The working principle is also quite simple. You just press the Capture button and it takes the first shot. Then it will show you four dots. You need to align your camera with those dots. If you have used Google Camera, you may be familiar with the concept. Your printed photo is scanned in just under 20 to 30 seconds.
The quality of the scan is quite impressive. Even if the photos have faded, they can be restored as the app is capable of making minor adjustments. The corners are also properly aligned if the photo print is quite old and bent at corners. Photoscan can also edit your snaps. Once you are done with the tasks you wanted to complete with the image, you just need to tap on Save All button. That does it - your scanned image is saved to Google Photos.

A few salient features


Photoscan by Google Photos is indeed a great app that lets you scan and save your printed photographs in the digital format. A few features that set it apart from the competition include
  • It does not just take the photograph of your old snap, it will create enhanced digital images.
  • The app is quite intuitive and simple to use.
  • The tool can crop the edges of your photos and thus can automatically crop your images.
  • The app has a smart rotation feature that always scans your photo in the right orientation no matter at which angle you have scanned it.
  • Photoscan can scan a single photograph in just under 20 seconds.


The two sides of the coin


Well, what we mean by that is the Pros and Cons of the tool. Photoscan has been a part of the broader upgrade to Google Photos. The app has been released a month ago in November, 2016. We look forward to the future updates that may bring improvements.

Pros
  • Automatic scans of your printed photographs.
  • The app is quite fast with its performance.
  • Automatic glare removal.
  • Photoscan is, in fact, faster than a scanner.


Cons
  • The scanning ability depends upon the camera on your device. That would mean if you have a high end phone, you will end up getting great results. In case your phone has a crappy camera - the final results may not be as you would expect them to be.
  • There are certain issues observed with respect to color and lights effects.
  • Quality of the scanned images are not comparable to the professional scanners.

The Final Thoughts


Photoscan is indeed one of the best options for bringing your vintage photos back to life. Coming from Google, it should be a great performer for the task it has been made for. It can crop, works on the color details and save it on the cloud on your Google Photos account. It uses machine language understanding for correcting the color, orientation and other such finer details - and then saves your image in the digital format over the cloud. The app is free to use, so why do we need to worry. The app is from Google and that in itself should be a reason enough to try the app.


Article by Timmappa Kamat
Timmappa Kamat is a technology enthusiast. He has an active interest in newer technological developments. He is fond of new gizmos & gadgets. He loves to share his knowledge through tech-savvy websites as a freelancer. A Mechanical Engineer by profession, he is equally interested in blogging, with his own blog. He wants to carve a name for himself in blogging arena one day! If you need any clarifications about his articles,please respond here below or get in touch with him through his profile.

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