After a long vacation, it is customary to force your friends and family to endure hundreds upon hundreds of photos from trip. As they sit there bored to tears while a row of random pictures appears on the computer or TV screen, you start wondering why none of them find your bakcpacking tour through the Himalayas very exciting. It's not the photos themselves that are uninteresting, but rather the way they are presented. With "Photo Gallery (Fish Bowl Beta)" you can spice up your photo slideshows to make them more interactive and exciting for the audience.
Features & Use
Using the word Fish Bowl as a title for a photography app may seem counterintuitive. So let me just get started by saying that Photo Galery (Fish Bowl Beta) is not a joke, but a serious photo album application with many interesting and useful features.
At start-up, you are guided through a short introduction of the different options that are available. Then you are greeted with a list of all the pictures on your device. The screen is divided into two halfs: the one on the left displays a fairly large preview and the one on the right shows a mini preview version. Every picture is surrounded by a white frame.
As soon as a picture is selected, the picture and the frame exapnd to a larger size while the other pictures rescede to the background. You can move around the large picture around the screen as you wish and the screen has no borders. By pulling at the edge of the screen you can enlarge or minimize the picture as well as rotate it 360 degrees around its own axis. Touching the frame of the picture only affects the size of the picture. This sounds way more complicated than it actually is - just try it out yourself to get an understanding of just how intuitive the controls are.
Another interesting feature to point out: up to 4 pictures can be brought to the forefront of the screen. This gives you the opportunity to create whole cool-looking collages! It would've been nice to have an integrated screen capture feature. Too bad.
To switch between pictures, the easiest thing to do is swipe across the screen and the next picture pops up automatically. Surpsrisingly, this format of picture viewing works way better than the default Android photo gallery.
Among the more practical features is undoubtebly the ability to set photos as your launcher's background picture. What makes this feature special is the fact that you can select and crop any part of a picture. It goes without saying that Fish Bowl includes such standard features as deleting, moving and editing pictures. Unfortunately, this can only be done with individual pictures and not entire albums.
There are two slideshow options included with Fish Bowl: a normal slideshow where every picture is shown full-screen in consecutive odre and a special slideshow where multiple photos slowly appear on the screen.
To be quite honest, the app's fish bowl feature is more confusing that useful. All it does is display 12 pictures instead of 4. Don't ask me what that has to do with fish aquariums...
Finally, there is also the Max Color feature which enfaces the colors of your snapshots. In thery, it's supposed to make your photos look more beautiful, but I didn't notice any difference (and I'm not colorblind either).
Bottom Line: Photo Gallery (Fish Bowl Beta) does not have a fitting name, but works much better than your average photo gallery app. I find the slideshow options and the controls to be the most worthy of praise. There are a couple of weird and unexplainable features, but generally speaking the app works well.
Screen & Controls
Speaking from experience, the controls for Photo Gallery (Fish Bowl Beta) are great! This app made my photo album look more stylish and it was much easier to use and navigate than the stock photo gallery app. The controls may stray a bit from the conventional, but they are actually fairly easy to use.
The design is great and actually gives even your crappiest vacation photos a better look. I guess the design is a bit fish bowl-like, so perhaps this is where the title comes from. Or it's just totally random. It's your choice.
Speed & Stability
Photo Gallery (Fish Bowl Beta) did not crash and performed really well in terms of speed. Except for the intial time it takes the app to load all of your pictures, the transition between the individual pictures is snappy. In order to avoid any lags, you can adjust the picture display quality in the settings. Frankly, I didn't notice any difference because the app was quick as it was.
Photo Gallery (Fish Bowl Beta) can be downloaded for free from the Google Android Market.