PetaPixel Wants to Bring RAW Photo Editing to a Browser Near You

Picsio App 1

Traditionally, a photographer’s post-processing workflow does not include a web browser, but rather, tools like Lightroom and Aperture. is hoping to change that, and is working to bring serious RAW picture editing and collaborating to the web browser.

The start-up, founded by three Ukranian entrepreneurs, uses WebGL technology (which, in short, allows web browsers to harness the power of a computer’s graphics card) to make the online tools they offer a reality. The mission? Get more people to dabble into RAW photography by offering easy access to editing tools.

Picsio App 2

Speaking of easy, the process for getting started with editing involves simply dragging an imported image into your web browser, and it can be edited right away. Thereafter, will upload the image to Google Drive (other storage options may become available, eventually). Edits can then be made accordingly using the supplied tools, which we unfortunately do not have much information on, at the moment, given this project is still in development.

Future plans for include allowing multiple layer editing and a connection service that will allow photographers to get in touch with users who may be able to edit or retouch their images. — in private alpha, at the moment — expects to launch their service a bit later this year. Tools will be available for free, allowing a user to edit up to a few photos per month, whilst premium users will be able to edit an unlimited amount of photos. (via CNET)

Thanks for the tip, Pete!

  • Oliver

    Isn’t it true that when you upload anything to Googles services you automatically give them a perpetual and irrevocable license to use that content?

  • Willi Kampmann

    “The start-up, founded by three Ukranian entrepreneurs, uses WebGL technology (which, in short, allows web browsers to harness the power of a computer’s graphics card) to make the online tools they offer a reality.”

    So in other words this is still local RAW editing, just in the browser instead of a native app for some reason. That’s too bad: RAW editing inside the browser would only appeal to me if it was using cloud computing, making it suitable on low-power systems like subnotebooks/ultrabooks and tablets. Just porting Lightroom 1:1 into the browser doesn’t do me anything good.

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    It’s a myth more or less. They have an item similar to what you’ve wrote, but it’s there just to make sure that if your file is somehow lost from their servers (even though the chance of this is 0,0001%), they don’t get sued by you for $1000000. Keep calm, Google doesn’t want to sell your photos :)

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    How about storing images and catalog on the cloud? And forget about backup and “run out of space”. That way you can organize your library from a tablet or a phone (only editing part is absent on such devices).

  • Willi Kampmann

    Except the editing part is kind of the biggest opportunity of RAW editing in the browser. Storing your photo database in the cloud is nice, but only half the way.

    Besides, Google Drive doesn’t have unlimited space either and gets pricey quickly. Only 5GB are free; if I wanted to store my whole Aperture library as is in Google Drive, I’d just have blown past the 200GB for 10$/month option. The next one would be 400GB for 20$/month, ouch! Being a Dropbox user I’m even paying 10 bucks a month for a mere 100GB. Storing my database locally and exporting to Flickr (unlimited for 2$/month) seems more economically reasonable to me right now. Cloud storage still is expensive.

    (If Flickr extended its services to a true cloud computing RAW editor I think I’d shell out any price they’d ask for)

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    Google Drive now offers 15GB for free. Moreover, you don’t need to store full-size raws in the operative storage like Drive or Dropbox. After all, you need raw versions only during editing. Most of the times you’re going to share JPEGs made of those raws or even web-previews. That allows to store raws that have been processed in a cold storage like Glacier, for example. It costs $1/month for 100GB. You should check out this post I wrote:
    Don’t want to deal with cloud storages – use your own Network attached storage.

  • Thomas Lawn

    I would KILL for this to work on an ipad.

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    iPad app is in the roadmap. Except editing everything is feasible at the moment (maybe in time we’ll figure out this too). We have several ideas regarding iPad app but tell me what you’d kill for.

  • Thomas Lawn

    I just want the ability to convert RAW from an ipad with simple adjustments like exposure, fill light, clarity, blacks, and maybe curves and levels, with the ability to create presets. Ideally, it would mean I could take all the photos from a big event or something and do my cull and basic edits on an ipad on the way home or from a hotel or something (double points if it works without needing wifi), and have a huge chunk of my work finished when it’s time to actually edit.

    Essentially, Photomechanic for ipad with the addition of some light image editing is what I want.

  • Gary

    Prediction: If this takes off, Google will buy it and then integrate it into Chrome as an extension, or as an app for for the Chromebook.

  • DimiRebel

    Here’s hoping Google does either buy it or get it perfected on chrome OS, I just spent $2500 on a new main editing system, but have a little chromebook as a beater for the train (most Canadian trains have wifi) and sitting around on sets. The ability to toss a $250 chromebook into my bag and not really care about its fate among tools and clothes in there, and yank open a couple shots from my little x100 on my own time or my 5dm3 on set as samples until I get home and can properly deal with them, that’s filling one of the last barriers I’ve had in adopting it as my full time little travel thing.

    Personally interested to see if I can login to catalogs from various systems, maybe work on the same set with another photog much like multiple collaborators in google docs, but curious about the cloud bit. People like me… 18tb of images and dslr vid is NOT about to go into the cloud. Maybe some of sort of “current work” can be in the cloud along with critical galleries, and an option for use of linking to externals. Oh well, they have me on an interested first user list.

  • bogorad

    If only it was DxO.. ;)

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    It will work on ChromeOS perfectly. We are going to try out packaged app ‘framework’ very soon.
    Now about a storage. We want to make it very flexible. Something in the cloud, something on your personal comp/NAS, for example. The only issue with network server – you shouldn’t shut it down if you want to have access through internet. But that’s a pretty obvious thing.

  • DimiRebel

    Glad to see somebody talking about an unreleased item without simply referencing a press release. I’m signed up to the mailing list, quite excited to see how this goes. Will wonder if the catalog file can be stored in Google Drive or a program login, so me and the guys I work with can run from a shared catalog at the same time. Love the NAS drive or local storage, to be able to connect to a home system from anywhere and pull up files for a client, very cool. Perhaps I’m simply someone hoping to be less reliant on Adobe or a single machine (I travel daily, a lost laptop with needed hard drives to DO anything is a constant fear that had come true before). Good luck guys

  • Konstantin Shtondenko

    Thanks. I was reading your comment and one more time convinced myself we’re on the right track. Please, right me an email on konstantin [at] so I could knew which email is yours when we give first users access,

  • DimiRebel

    Just sent sir, under the name Dimitri

  • Danielle

    Good point, I hope so. This is the only reason I need a more powerful machine, Photo Editing! I’ve got the HP Pavillion which has a great, relatively, screen. Fingers crossed.