Apple axes Aperture and iPhoto, says new Photos app for OS X is the future

“Apple has officially pulled the plug on its professional photo management tool Aperture, focusing all of its attention on the new Photos app coming with OS X Yosemite later this year,” David Nield reports for Digital Trends. “The same app will also replace the existing iPhoto as Apple looks to revamp its approach to image handling across computers, devices and the cloud.”

“While seasoned Aperture users are dismayed at the news, the app — which competed directly with Adobe Lightroom — has not been updated for several years and didn’t look to be part of Apple’s long-term plans,” Nield reports. “The Cupertino company has confirmed that Aperture will run on Yosemite, though the software will no longer be developed from this point on.”

“Parts of the upcoming Photos app were demoed at WWDC. The software will enable users to apply several basic tweaks and effects to their images and manage a constantly updating stream of pictures through iCloud,” Nield reports. “It’s possible that some of Aperture’s functionality is going to be covered by paid-for add-ons to the main Photos app.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Wait and see before leaping blindly to Lightroom. There’s no rush. Aperture still works. If Photos doesn’t have you covered, Lightroom will still be there.

Related articles:
Apple pulls plug on Aperture – June 27, 2014
Apple may have finally solved photo storage hell – June 23, 2014
Apple unveils new versions of OS X and iOS, major iCloud update with iCloud Drive – June 2, 2014


    1. This is the same move, for the same reason, as the changes last October to iWork. Apple wants its users to be able to use the same data seamlessly on all its platforms. We now know that the iWork changes foreshadowed the Continuity features that will allow painless handoffs back and forth between desktop and mobile. Photos will do the same thing. Millions of people who take pictures on their iPhone and currently manage them on their desktop will be enthralled. This will sell a lot of Macs to Windows Home users.

      Unfortunately, extracting yolks breaks eggs. The price for interoperability is a common file format and a set of tools that operates nearly the same on all the platforms. In the case of Pages, the layout features that were not practical on an iPhone or iPad mini were dropped from the Mac, too. These were not just esoteric “geek fare,” but included the ability to edit a newsletter featuring two stories on the front page with text that flowed to continuations inside.

      The price for Photos is likely to be all of the Aperture features that make sense for managing your terabyte-sized image archive on a Mac Pro with dual 27-inch 4k monitors, but not for your snapshot collection on a 4 (or even 5.5) inch iPhone. That will make the new Photos an awesome successor to the old iPhone/iPad app and even to the Mac iPhoto app. It will clearly not include all (or perhaps any) of the Aperture features that require a larger screen, a more powerful processor, or local storage.

      Apple needs to be proactive in letting its Aperture customers know what will carry forward to the new Photos and what won’t. Obviously, the images themselves will transfer, but what about the metadata like keywords, library organization, and editing history? It simply doesn’t do to tell the customers not to worry, but to just continue entering their valuable data into a program that could break in a year or so (the old iWork will already have problems with Yosemite). If they can use Photos, fine, but if they can’t they need to start managing the transition now and not when they have thousands more images to transfer.

      If the people who feed their families with this stuff don’t have the information to make rational decisions, what you will get is what we have: a lot of panic and Apple-bashing.

      1. Aperture was the future more than a decade ago.

        I’ve been using it since v1.0, and I like it a *lot* … but judging from some of the material presented at this year’s WWDC, we’re looking forward to some extremely interesting new capabilities (without losing a good deal of what’s most useful in Aperture now).

  1. The day I have to go to Lightroom as my only option is the day I go back to Windows. If I am left to run Adobe’s bloated crapware there is no point in running it on a Mac.

    1. Oh jeez… Another one of those “I’m going to stop using a Mac” people… So, the only thing you use on the Mac is Aperture or iPhoto? I don’t think Adobe makes “crapware”. Moving to Windows would definitely make you use “bloated crapware”. Calm down and let Apple tell us more.

    2. The day I have to ride on a dirt road, I’m going to get a base model Yugo. There is no point in me having air conditioning, power seats and door locks. I mean if the roads are going to be bad, there is no part of the experience that should be enjoyable.

      Yes, you make a good point.

      1. Not for long it won’t. What other company would produce a Mac Pro, then a few months later blow-of a large proportion of the very people who would buy such a machine to run Aperture and very large photo libraries? If you’re an iPhone photographer then you simply don’t understand the significance of this move by Apple. Photography was one of the major drivers of Apple’s recovery and I think they are about to commit a very big error.

        1. Just like the Xserve Apple knows the numbers and evidently not selling well and making money or it wouldn’t have been canceled. I would assume most use Lightroom.

        2. Apple has specifically stated that it will be updating Aperture for Yosemite. So that’s one issue settled.

          Look at the WWDC presentation “Advances in CoreImage” to see where they’re headed with Photos; it’s not just going to be on iOS, and it’s going to permit things on OS X that Aperture does not currently do, or only does with difficulty. And developers will be able to more, more easily than they can do with Aperture plugins right now.

    3. Aperture has been dysfunctional for years. Poorly written code has prevented updating the app with improved feature sets, requiring a complete rewrite. Management has been, to be kind, reluctant. “Photos” is the new iteration, and whether it will meet the needs of professionals is yet to be seen.

      Lightroom is brilliantly designed by photographers, for photographers. It provides features that meets the needs the professional photographer, in an elegant interface. It has a steep learning curve, but once learned, it performs beautifully!

        1. So most likely pay for then if he said that as Yosemite will come out in the new few months. Another $9.99 app? That will suck since iPhoto was free with the rest of the other stuff now.

  2. While I’m sure the new Photos will be great for what it’s going to be. We all know that it’s going to be aimed at consumers. Professionals have different needs and that’s why yesterday’s news pissed us professionals off. Most iphoto users don’t have need for Aperatures advanced features and the pros need more then the basic features of iPhoto’s If you try to combine the two, you either water down the product or you make it way too complicated.

    Again, the pros know this and that’s why apple’s decision to walk away from the pro community sucks. We’ll get through this, but it wl require of different vendor software (Lightroom, Capture One, ect)

    1. It is very possible for there to be add-on features like Apple did for QuickTime when they had greyed out “Pro” features you unlocked with a purchasing a $ license. Apple could even offer a Photos “Pro” version but why? Just incorporate it as an in-app upgrade so Apple only needs to support one basic engine under the hood.

    2. Capture One is the best on the market. Never even tried Aperture because I knew Apple wouldn’t stand behind it over the long haul.

      As for using Apple software and services in your business, just don’t. They always end up dropping or changing and the end result is that it costs more time and money. The only Apple software I rely on now is the OS. Even then it seems that with each “update” something always “breaks”.

      1. Jokes or trolling? I guess the later.

        As a small business user I now use Apple software exclusively where possible. It cost FAR less time money and effort than alternatives and I have never been left in the lurch. Even with Aperture it will still work for a while and then I will be able to migrate to whatever I choose to use next.

        Your comment reminds me of my windows experience – except you missed the virusus, crashing, drivers hassles and nightmare upgrading / reinstalling cycles.

        1. Try an exercise in human feeling and empathy: Imagine that you make your living using a software program that you chose because it was the most appropriate for your workflow. You have spent hundreds of hours familiarizing yourself with the program and building data libraries that meet your requirements.

          Now further imagine that, through no fault of your own, you are being forced to move all your work to a program that you have already considered and regard as second-best for your purposes. That move is not a trivial matter; it will require considerable personal attention if you expect to have usable libraries after the conversion. For days or weeks while you are doing that and training yourself to use the new software, you will be unable to do any of the work for which you are paid so that you can feed your family.

          If you can imagine that, you might conclude that such a person has the right to be upset. He might understand perfectly why Apple chose to do this, but that doesn’t help his situation one bit. You might be less inclined to call him a troll or a whiner when he expresses his distress.

          1. Am I sympathetic to others’ plights? Yes.
            Am in the same boat? Yes.
            Did he express any distress? No. In fact he stated that he doesn’t use Aperture!

            This isn’t about empathy or hardship but about someone making blanket statements about Apple software that are ridiculous.

            Read again:
            As for using Apple software and services in your business, just don’t. They always end up dropping or changing and the end result is that it costs more time and money. The only Apple software I rely on now is the OS. Even then it seems that with each “update” something always “breaks”.

      2. Capture One has been around longer than Aperture or Lightroom and is available for the Mac. Haven’t use it (yet) but I’ve heard good things about it.

    3. Don’t get ahead of yourself to soon; Apple isn’t walking away from pros just yet.

      Go over to and see the article about the end of Aperture, particularly the parts about CoreImage developments at WWDC 2014.

      It’s not just aimed at amateurs.

      1. Ppl here give you one star for ridiculous comments and trolling. Ppl give me 1 star reviews for mentioning Jesus (because He’s the author of life) in my posts.

        Feel free to vote yourself up if you have the need to be liked.

  3. Well, Apple could buy Adobe… and Windows has its own subscriptions- Office, AV… Even if Apple dumbed down all pro apps, there still are alternatives for the Mac. I’d hate to lose Logic, but there’s still other audio apps for Mac and iOS, and Windows or Android will never be options- I don’t want to live in those worlds.

  4. Can anyone briefly explain what Aperture or Lightroom offer that is so helpful to pros? If you need to edit a photo, don’t most just use photoshop? And what would prevent Apple from incorporating these features into the new Photos? I’m asking from a perspective of complete ignorance of this issue.

    1. I am in the same category as you, but I think it lets you see multiple pics at once and good for quickly seeing and making some basic edits quickly and easily and comparing them side by side and can revert changes. Don’t quote me on that though, others who use the apps probably know better.

    2. Well, just to pick out one feature at random.

      Aperture has a feature whereby you could ‘tether’ your very expensive digital SLR camera to the application and any photo you took appeared in your library on a near-instantaneous basis.

      Which meant that – if you were a professional studio doing images for marketing, advertising or publishing – the editor/sponsor/client could sit at the screen watching the session happening in near-realtime thus facilitating a faster exchange of creative ideas.

      But that’s just one thing.

    3. Batch applying corrections lifted from one photo to any number of other photos.

      Three uses of this come to mind right away:
      – White balance
      – Dust removal
      – Straightening

      1) White balance adjustment. With no judgement intended, iPhoto users typically use the Auto White Balance setting on their camera. Pros typically set the white balance on their camera (many methods). In a concert, you might set it via a gray card before the performers take the stage… then the lighting folks change the lighting. So after taking all your pictures you need to update them to what your eye remembers the lighting really being

      2) Dust removal. Again, iPhoto users probably never change a lens and so their sensor doesn’t accumulate the dust that a DSLR does. In post (Aperture) you use the correction tool to “remove” the dust, and since it’s on the sensor it’ll be on all your shots — batch apply that fix to tons of photos.

      3) Straightening. We shoot at 9 to 11 frames per second, so probably on average 5 shots at any time. And hand held causes a little bit of lean that can easily be fixed in one and batch applied to the rest.

  5. I’m done buying any Apple programs. I’m tired of being orphaned. Will the old programs like iWeb and aperture still work? Yes, but crippled by what is out there. I was foolish enough to purchase Aperture, great layout and feature set and leaped ahead of lightroom. Then Apple ignored it and Adobe passed Aperture with much needed feature. For pro or semi pro photo processing then there is only Lightroom. Get a version of Lightroom goes on sale and then pirate CS6 if you’re not a fan of Adobe’s ridiculous pricing structure. It just sucks getting pushed around by these companies.

    1. Are you aware the Adobe’s Photography Program includes Photoshop CC and Lightroom is only $9.99 per month these days? If you can’t justify that then Photos will probably meet your needs.

      P.S. I have used Aperture since it was launched and am not happy about the move at this point, but let’s see what Photos offers before we freak out.

  6. Let’s hope Apple plays it smart. I didn’t like their iWork “update” because they took out some important features. Hopefully, we’ll get something that is the best of both worlds with this new photos app!

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