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iPhoto'11 on the iPad Feels Exactly Like an iPad App

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There's no iPhoto app, which is really bad because I want to be able to tag and organize my photos on the iPad. The good news: it may not be far way. After all, iPhoto '11 is iPad ready today.

I got iPhoto '11 to run on the iPad using a remote desktop software called Splashtop. Splashtop streams whatever is on your Mac screen to your iPad at its native 1024 x 768 resolution, allowing you to control it remotely.


iPhoto '11 fits the iPad perfectly right now

Once I was connected to my Mac, I set iPhoto in the new full screen mode. It didn't just fit the iPad perfectly; full screen iPhoto '11 actually feels designed entirely for the iPad, from top to bottom.


Everything about its user interface is designed for touch operation. Every single button, tab, and user interface widget—from the handling of events to the adjust image panels to the cropping window—is clearly made with your fingers in mind. All these elements are sized and spaced so you can easily manipulate them without any problem. In fact, if Splashtop supported magic trackpad emulation for swiping and zooming, working with it wouldn't feel any different from any other iPad app (sadly, Splashtop has to emulate conventional cursor operation, so working with it doesn't feel nearly as fluid as a native iPad app).

I want it all and I want it now

All the different app sections look pixel-perfect and perfectly proportioned, not just the photo editing. The project shelf—with its wooden art—the faces pane—the Polaroids pinned on the cork wall—or the map in places look specifically designed for the iPad screen.

So, if all the UI work is done, when is iPhoto for iPad coming?

My gut instinct tells me that the iPhoto app release is imminent, as soon as the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, California June 6-10. While WWDC is not a consumer-oriented event, iPhoto for iPad could be an excellent vehicle to demonstrate two things to app developers:

First, that it is possible to keep a single strategy, user interface and probably codebase for many applications running on both iOS 5 and Mac OS X Lion—as long as you use the modal, full-screen mode that Apple will be favoring soon.


Second, iPhoto on the iPad will be a perfect opportunity to demonstrate some of the rumored cloud capabilities that Apple may soon be adding to iOS 5. I can imagine an iPhoto library that lives in the cloud, with images that can be streamed—automagically resized for optimal display—to both your iPad, iPhone and desktop Mac. And I can imagine working on these images—tagging and editing then—from my iPad and having any changes applied in the cloud and available on every device (something that is entirely possible, given the fact that iPhoto changes are not pixel-based and non-destructive, so they can be easily stored and transmitted through any network).


It all makes sense—plus I have been right before about this whole touch thing, so I may get lucky again. But whatever happens, I hope it happens very soon. I really really really want iPhoto for iPad as soon as possible. And I'm sure most other iPad users will be spending $4.99 to get it too, even more than for Garage Band and iMovie.