Breaking: Apple Officially Kills Off Aperture


The day has come. We all felt it in our bones, but today it has been confirmed by the guys in Cupertino: Apple has stopped development of Aperture, its professional-level photo organization and editing software.

This news doesn’t come as a major surprise, especially on the heels of this year’s WWDC. With a number of new photo applications and an updated platform coming to life, the official announcement is only an echo of the rumor that Aperture had one foot in a grave and the other on a banana peel.

As Apple itself told The Loop Editor-in-Chief Jim Dalrymple:

With the introduction of the new Photos app and iCloud Photo Library, enabling you to safely store all of your photos in iCloud and access them from anywhere, there will be no new development of Aperture. When Photos for OS X ships next year, users will be able to migrate their existing Aperture libraries to Photos for OS.

Screenshot by PS3zocker showing iOS 8's prompt for editing photos.

Screenshot by PS3zocker showing iOS 8’s prompt for editing photos.

Also confirmed, is the fact that the new Photos app featured at WWDC this year will officially replace the iLife program iPhoto. Up until now, this had only been rumored.

As for Apple’s other professional-grade programs, such as Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro, there’s no need to fear. In Apple’s statement to The Loop, they were “very clear” that these programs are still in active development.

With this announcement and the confirmation that Photos for OS X will indeed replace iPhoto, Apple’s photography-related applications will now become more streamlined than ever. Photos will soon be the new standard for both iOS and OS X photo organization and processing.

And for a company that strives to live and die by the tenets of consistency and simplicity, it seems like a logical move, if a bit unpleasant for some photographers.

(via The Loop)

Update: According to Apple Insider, “Apple also said it is working with Adobe to help users transition to its Lightroom app for Mac.” As pointed out to us by Google+ commenter David Fraser, this solidifies two notions. First, this means that in due time there’s a very good chance that an Aperture-to-Lightroom plugin/app/script will come to life. Second, this also means Apple does not at all consider their Photos app to be any sort of professional replacement.

Image credits: Screenshot provided by PS3zocker and used with permission.

  • Michael Comeau

    I’ve been a loyal Aperture user for over 5 years. I’ll pay big $$$ for an easy Lightroom migration tool.

  • Mauricio Matos

    It was quite obvious for at least a year now. And I do fear for the other pro apps.

  • DavidC

    So is the pro-level software gone or just relabeled?

  • Tyson Williams

    Not a good news… moved from Lightroom to Aperture a few years ago, wish I would have stayed where I was.

  • Ted Goudie

    This stinks, but I’d been researching the move to Lightroom for the last few months and just couldn’t quite pull the trigger yet. I guess I’ll have to do that now.

    From a photo processing standpoint, I’m sure I’ll be fine, because I already use several plug-ins, Photoshop, and sometimes Lightroom. I switched to referenced masters recently, so that part’s ready, but I’ll have to examine what I want to do about star ratings, meta data, etc. I’ve read a lot, but haven’t tested any of the methods yet. I’m suspecting more methods are going to pop up shortly.

    I’ll miss the Aperture interface and approach to organization, but what I’ll miss most is the integration throughout OSX and the Apple product ecosystem. We have Aperture smart albums powering the screensavers on our computer and Apple TV, use them to share/send emails, etc. There’s no way I’m switching to the new version of iPhoto for this, so I’ll just have to take the extra steps necessary to make similar things work with Lightroom.

  • Gannon Burgett

    It was most definitely obvious.

    As for the other pro apps though, I feel like they’re too ingrained in the industry. They might die off eventually, but I don’t see it anytime soon. Too many pro studios rely on FCP and Logic for Apple to drop support without at least a year of notice.

  • sascharheker

    A nice and warm “F**** You!” from Apple to all the pro users who are not that much interested in head phones! Thank you!

  • Mauricio Matos

    I agree…it’s not something that will happen tomorrow but every day that goes by, I see Apple more of a mobile device company rather than computer/software developer.

  • Andrew Iverson

    Damn it. I have both, but just preferred how Aperture did things.

  • sascharheker

    Why should anyone buy a new Mac Pro to run iTunes?

  • DavidC

    I will wait to see what Photos can/can’t do but yeah…same boat. Losing all my adjustments just hurts.

  • Mauricio Matos

    Do you have any doubts that a lot of people do just that? People with money just buy the best they can get, no matter if they need it or not.

  • SiriusPhotog

    Many studios (video) already bailed on FCP a couple years ago when Apple dumbed it down with that X version. They switched to Premiere with its tight integration with After Effects it just made sense.

  • Ondrej Vranka

    Hmmm – what does suggest calling that thing “pro”? The hardware stucked into it? erhmmmm….

    iMac is the “pro” Machine since couple of years… at least in the advertising and print industry. Photogs? Didn’t see a single one here around using that black trashcan… Macbook with a larger Screen attached is their weapon of choice…

  • Tobias W.

    Same here. I keep a MacBook Pro around just for Aperture and I was thinking about buying a new Mac this fall. This is obsolete now. I will get a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 instead, the touch pen and the docking station. End of story. Good buy Apple, it was fun while it lasted.

  • GT Campbell

    Glad I switched from Aperture to Capture One Pro about 4 years ago. I’ve never looked back!

  • swardraws

    Well I guess that decides it for me. I use Aperture for catalog archiving purposes only. I have been toying around with moving that all to Lightroom, I guess it is time to look at that option more seriously now.

  • kenmcall

    Last time I checked, there are a lot of other companies besides Apple making Mac software that easily use the power of the Mac Pro. A little company called Adobe is one.

  • Niall

    Well, I have to say I’m not surprised at this. Although, I still think it’s a big ‘F…. You’ from Apple and I’m really pissed off and disappointed about it now. Looks like the shift to Adobe will be complete soon.. Now if only I can figure out how to move my massive library of referenced files to Lightroom without losing the data, and learn that program now instead… oh joy…

  • Kamil Tamiola

    The same here… I have shot the latest campaign for JEEP with Capture One 7.2.2.

  • Matty Davies

    I’ve never heard of this software, not had people tell me about it and not seen it mentioned on here so I guess it was the right thing.

  • Courtney Navey

    well that only took 8 years…the day I picked up Aperture 2 I knew that it wouldn’t survive. The day I picked up LR 2 I fell in love with editing all over again.

  • ℉0t°oG®@Ф

    there was no point in this app from day one.

  • Tim Moran

    Why is Everyone complaining when you have not seen whats in store for the future? yeah your workflow will change but, your work flow has been changing all these years anyways. I have been using Apple’s Aperture for Years and it will hurt a little to see it go. Hopefully once Apple is ready to release more news we will all see how this new way of doing pics, is much better & wonder why we did it anyway else. :)

  • sheldonc

    Likewise disappointed, but seeing Aperture languish for a couple of years made me wary. I’ve not been a big fan of LR, but I guess I’ll have to become one.

  • sheldonc

    Ted, I couldn’t have said it better. Apple is pushing things more and more to the iOS wing and has been showing signs of paring down elsewhere. I’ll use Aperture, I suppose, until such a time as I just can’t hold on any longer.

  • Federico Montemurro

    oh boy, another shift.

  • Mauricio Matos

    What I did a couple of years ago when I moved to Lightroom was just export the final edits as TiFF. Done. It will take you a lot of HD space if you have a lot of final imagens…but to try to emulate the same settings in Lightroom is a real pain.

  • Chris L

    Have to agree with Sirius, Apple lost a lot of FCP users with X. They can’t seem to work out how to be newbie-user-friendly on the one hand whilst also offering hardcore pro applications at the same time

  • DavidC

    From another blog….there is hope

    “Apple says libraries will be able to migrate across to the new application when the application ships. Apple is working with Adobe to offer a upgrade path to Lightroom. As noted by TechCrunch, Apple will offer a Yosemite compatibility update for Aperture, but otherwise development has ended.”

  • jiannazzone

    I see this as further evidence that Apple is continuing its transition from being a computer company to being a consumer electronics and cloud services company. This has involved making all of their devices and software as simple to use as possible. It opens up a much larger market than those who might look elsewhere for a more user customizable experience.

  • Mark d Phillips

    I have loved Aperture and will really miss the product. I will continue to use it until I finally make the switch to Adobe. I miss the old Apple. It is not the same company.

  • Gram

    Actually, FCPX started on a hoooooorrible foot, but with the upgrades to ~10.1, it is fairly competitive.

  • Kurt

    No other software company can emulate Aperture software? Will be interested to see how Photos stacks up. Did they merge the two? Will they offer a Pro version of Photos (Aperture)?

  • SiriusPhotog

    Yeah, it’s gotten better. But when it initially came out many folks saw it as the disaster that it was and bailed. Now they are comfortable with Premiere and After Effects and see no reason to give FCP another shot. It happened where I worked at the time and other studios too.

  • Behinder

    People, you can still use your old Aperture. Pics are pics. Raws are still raws.

  • Behinder

    Surface Pro 3? seems like a good joke ;P

  • Karin Winter

    I am so freaked out! I have 40.000 photos in my Aperture iPhoto library. I do not have them any where else. When they say they will not further update Aperture, that doesn’t mean we can’t use Aperture anymore right? So our libraries should stay intact? For now any advice on how to migrate our libraries some where else? Will this new software ‘Photos’ be another apple product that we can migrate our library to? Will it be an editing software like Aperture? For now I am going event by event and ‘exporting’ them to external hard drive. Should i export ‘originals’ or export my edited files, that I spend years editing? Don’t want to loose those edits? Lots of questions here…..

  • Woody ONeal

    I wanna file a complaint.

    Can someone please get Jobs on the transcendental phone line?

    As a longtime APPL stock holder, it’s as if some of the soul has left the company. Sure, we should embrace change (Jobs WAS a change agent for sure), but this just feels too much like “giving up”.

    If the Photos app is great, well then great. But my suspicion is that it won’t.

  • Bill Binns

    Seriously, after a year of using Lightroom you will send Apple a Thank You note for killing Aperture. Step 1. Start trying to figure out where Aperture has been keeping your actual photos.

    Since I started using Lightroom a few years ago, i have come to enjoy editing as much as shooting.

  • Karin Winter

    How do you figure that out? Can’t I just select albums/events and export them to my ext. hard drive?

  • Pickle

    Womp Womp. I’m tempted to go on a rant about Apple Fanboys, but for all we know, lightroom isn’t going to be around for ever either or they may force everybody to go to a subscription plan or something else. The lesson is, don’t rely on one company for your entire photography. I know a lot of professional photographers brag about having all their pictures in one giant catalog and how easily they can find things in lightroom. Well great. What would you do without Lightroom? Did you set up your directory structure logically? Do you have JPGs of all your final edits?

  • Pickle

    Until the next OS doesn’t run it anymore. Until you get a new camera and raw support isn’t covered anymore.

  • Bill Binns

    If you are shooting RAW I don’t think you will get your original RAW files with an export. My experience with Aperture is limited to helping friends but I have been frustrated in the past by trying to locate the orginal files. A few Google searches should get you sorted.

  • Gannon Burgett

    You can most definitely export RAW photos. There are plenty of tutorials out there showing you how best to do it, but it’s definitely doable.

  • jon

    It’s not as if they don’t have the money to continue development. It’s just that they’re assholes and want to destroy the power user.

  • jon

    You can extract your originals, I believe. But it doesn’t matter, I’ve had aperture lose original photos on two separate occasions.

  • jon

    Yeah, the further we get from Jobs’s death, the more I realize how important he actually was to the company. I’ve been using Apple for quite some time (quit in os9 and returned with Tiger), and I am thinking it might be time to quit again. I’d really prefer to run a Linux OS, but without Adobe CC or a comparable photo and video editor, I just can’t.

  • K. Garang

    This is ironic with so much argument for purchasing and owning a boxed software vs cloud we have lately

  • Ken Elliott

    I do have a logical directory structure and exported JPGS of final edits, but I don’t think that’s a big issue. If I had done none of that, LR makes it pretty easy to reorganize folders, rename them, and export all my files in whatever format I wish. If LR went away, or to subscription-only, then I suspect Capture One may be the tool to consider.

    That said, I’m sad to see Apple give up on yet another group of users. I’ve sold my Macs, and am pretty happy with a HP workstation, Win 7 and LR + PS. But Apple kept Adobe on their toes – that now goes away.