Adobe Lightroom Comes to the iPad

| Product News

Adobe announced the immediate availability of Lightroom for the iPad on Monday as a companion app for Lightroom 5 on the Mac and Windows. Lightroom is Adobe's professional photography management and editing application.

Lightroom for iPad lets you edit Raw images away from your desktopLightroom for iPad lets you edit Raw images away from your desktop

Lightroom mobile auto-syncs images between your desktop and iPad, complete with metadata and collection changes, and it lets you edit Lightroom images via the iPad's touch interface. The app also auto-syncs photos you take with the iPad's built-in camera, and gives users control over which images sync between their iPad and desktop.

Since the image files Lightroom uses can quickly fill up an iPad's storage, the app works with thumbnail versions instead. It also offers a subset of features from the desktop version of Lightroom. Adobe says more features are coming, and an iPhone version is in the works, too.

Lightroom mobile is free and is available at Apple's iTunes-based App Store. It requires Lightroom 5 on the desktop, which is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud, starting at US$9.99 a month.

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iPhoto on the iPad is nice, but it isn't the same as having a mobile version of Aperture. Right now, Adobe is doing more for professional photographers on the go than Apple. It's your move, Cupertino.

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Lee Dronick

Is this app necessary on the iPad, or iPhone? Would a professional photographer use it on those devices or wait until the photos are one a Mac? I am not being snarky, just wondering.


Not sure. It isn’t clear whether you could connect your iPad to you camera directly; maybe an EyeFi Card would connect to it?


Photo editing is best done with a monitor larger than 20-inches, the bigger the better.  I can’t imagine attempting to do serious edits on an iPad.  My prediction is that with few exceptions Lightroom for iPad will be a tool for non-pros who want to dazzle their friends. 

The only benefit I see is for those who feel the need to get images up to social media as soon as possible after they’ve been taken.  Frankly, there are plenty products that do that already without having to participate in Adobe’s misguided subscription system.

Flip, digital cameras do connect directly to iOS devices with a handy camera adapter, available at your local Apple store, or via Wi-Fi if your camera is so equipped.

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