Photos for Mac launches with OS X 10.10.3, replaces iPhoto and Aperture

in Mac Software edited May 2015
With OS X 10.10.3, Apple's new Photos app, meant to replace both iPhoto and Aperture for people managing photos and video clips on their Mac, is now available to all Yosemite users.

The app is organized primarily into Photos, Shared, Albums, and Projects tabs. Users can narrow down content further through Moments, Collections, and Years views, which group files according to date and location metadata.

One of the core features is iCloud Photo Library integration. This lets users upload media in its original resolution and access it from any iOS 8 or OS X Yosemite device, as well as Apple's interface. Editing an image on one platform will automatically apply the same changes on other iCloud-linked devices. On iOS, though, only smaller versions of files are saved locally in order to preserve storage space.

The Mac software's editing tools are similar to those in Photos for iOS, letting users adjust image setting parameters automatically or through a series of slider bars for values such as exposure, contrast, and shadows and highlights. These are relatively basic, however, compared to professional suites such as Aperture, Lightroom, or Photoshop, which have many more parameter controls, and a broader array of tools like brushes and plugin extensions. Photos includes just eight filter options.

Photobook creation has been simplified, and given an assortment of new Apple-made themes and square book formats. When buying prints through the app, square and panoramic options have been added.

In tandem with Photos' launch, Apple has posted a quick start guide for help on tasks like migrating from iPhoto and Aperture, enabling iCloud Photo Library, or backing up to Time Machine. The company notes, for example, that iPhoto and/or Aperture will remain installed, and that migration should happen automatically if a person has a single detected library.

If two or more image editing apps are saving to the same location -- which defaults to a Mac's Pictures folder in Photos -- they can share the same master files. iPhoto Events are automatically converted into albums, and placed within an identically named folder under the Albums tab. In some cases, metadata like flags and star ratings will be turned into search keywords.

On iCloud Photo Library, Apple notes that iCloud will only keep the user-designated System Photo Library up to date on all devices. Changing that library causes the new one to merge with the old one in iCloud.

Today's release of OS X 10.10.3 and Photos was also accompanied by the launch of iOS 8.3. In release notes for that firmware the company revealed that iCloud Photo Library is officially out of beta, a status it has held since last year.


  • Reply 1 of 50
    shevshev Posts: 84member
    Get rid of Places and keep Faces. Genius move...
  • Reply 2 of 50
    rsantanarsantana Posts: 14member
    Very sweet...!

    No "Reveal in Finder"...though
  • Reply 3 of 50
    Over the last year I have accepted the fact that most of my editing will be done in Lightroom due to the discontinuation and lack of features in aperture. One of the strongest features in aperture for me was its organization. I was hoping with the new photos app my new work flow would be edit in Lightroom and transfer the finals to the new Photos app. After using Photos I have discovered it is not to far from being my main viewing library. I would like:

    - Photos needs to bring events back (as well as scrolling throw the event thumbnail)
    - Folders should display the photos in the viewer not the albums in the folder
    - Stacks for multiple edits of a single photo
    - the option to scale the background from white to black
    - a better full screen mode similar to aperture
  • Reply 4 of 50
    wheres my comment
  • Reply 5 of 50
    tyancytyancy Posts: 85member
    I'm relieved that the photobook feature has not been forgotten.
  • Reply 6 of 50
    boriscletoboriscleto Posts: 159member

    Photos doesn't replace anything. Not till it grows up.

  • Reply 7 of 50
    nofeernofeer Posts: 2,422member

    does it reduce the physical size of your "photos"

    i was looking forward to this pushing my photos to the cloud

    and saving me valuable ssd space

  • Reply 8 of 50
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,375member
    Originally Posted by boriscleto View Post


    Photos doesn't replace anything. Not till it grows up.


    Uh, speak for yourself. It has replaced iPhoto for me since the beta. Looks better, works better, and more features. It's already "grown up". 


    But keep spouting these "matter-of-fact" statements, based on nothing but your own ignorance, and that contain zero justification. 

  • Reply 9 of 50
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,375member
    Originally Posted by NOFEER View Post


    does it reduce the physical size of your "photos"

    i was looking forward to this pushing my photos to the cloud

    and saving me valuable ssd space


    Why is it so difficult to spend 5 seconds searching for yourself, instead of asking other people to do it for you and trusting their answers? Goes for everyone else with these basic Qs. From




    Can I use iCloud Photo Library to save space on my device?

    iCloud Photo Library automatically keeps all your photos and videos in the original, high-resolution version. Follow these steps to choose how you store your photos and videos on your device:

    • In iOS, tap Settings > iCloud > Photos or Settings > Photos & Camera, then select a storage setting.

    • In OS X, click Photos > Preferences > iCloud, then select a storage setting. 

    If you turn on Optimize [device] Storage, iCloud Photo Library will automatically manage the size of your library on your device, so you can make the most of your device's storage and access more photos than ever. All of your original, full-resolution photos and videos are stored in iCloud while device-size versions are kept on your device. You can download the original photos and videos over Wi-Fi or cellular when you need them. 

    If you turn on Download Originals, iCloud Photo Library will keep your original, full-resolution photos and videos in iCloud and on your device. Download Originals is the default setting for iOS devices with the free 5 GB storage plan and for all Mac devices.

  • Reply 10 of 50
    nofeernofeer Posts: 2,422member

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post



    Why is it so difficult to spend 5 seconds searching for yourself, instead of asking other people to do it for you and trusting their answers? Goes for everyone else with these basic Qs. From


    this is new.......some updates haven't worked like ?   has said

     i do trust the people on this forum they will give unbiased assessments of the product

    reality often doesn't reflect what ?   says

    before i invest in this update, i try not to get burned......some have reported bricking their macs

    i don't want to be one of them

    still i would like to see others experience with this update and perhaps ......tell the truth


    its a forum for thanks for the apple did it optimize your collection and how much did it save?

  • Reply 11 of 50
    justbobfjustbobf Posts: 261member

    >>>Download Originals is the default setting for iOS devices with the free 5 GB storage plan and for all Mac devices.


    Does this make sense? Why would I want to download all of the original-sized photo to my phone. whether of not I have 5 GB of iCloud backup? Am I reading Apple's statement wrong?

  • Reply 12 of 50

    I don't get the reasoning behind keeping iPhoto around now that Photos is here. Especially considering if you open iPhoto, you get a warning about trying to add or edit pictures. Why not just make a clean break and replace it outright? Or at least offer to delete itself the first time you open it after the upgrade? If they're going to have both on the system, then maybe Photos should have been a separate download and not automatically included at all.

  • Reply 13 of 50
    gavzagavza Posts: 19member

    Admittedly I haven't played with it for very long, but I dislike:


    0.  When I first launched it, it didn't offer to allow me to import my iPhoto library, which is in a non-standard location (actually in my Dropbox folder), so it instead created another library that appears to be connected to iCloud.  When I searched on how to import my iPhoto library, it turns out I had to launch Photos while holding down the option key, and this would allow me to select another library - in this case my iPhoto library.  That I needed to do it that way, rather than use File->Import, which did not work, is stupid, and tells me that Apple no longer sweats even the most obvious details.


    1.  Faces have the pictures in circles - obviously to be consistent with iOS, but I don't like it in iOS either.  There's no reason to use a circle, as the space outside the circle, to the size of the enclosing square, doesn't have any other content anyway - i.e. it just makes blank space.  Why would you do that?  It makes no sense.


    2.  Faces are not in alphabetical order, nor is there an option to sort them as such.  This is inane and insane, and truly makes no sense.  They also did this in the photos app on iOS which has since rendered it useless for finding photos of a particular person.  This tells me that Apple no longer cares about the software it puts out, and clearly can't be listening to users.


    3.  No places.  Really?  I mean I tagged a bunch of photos in iPhoto with the places they were taken, and now that looks like wasted effort, as I can't do it in Photos.


    4.  I had an "unnamed" smart album in iPhoto, that consisted of people who were not named - I don't appear to have that anymore.  There is kind of a replacement, in that when in Faces view it shows you photos with faces that are not yet named, but I can't make that part of the screen take up all the screen real estate.


    5.  In the view of Faces for a particular person, they are segregated by Events (or something like that), so often there are only 1 or 2 photos on a line.  This wastes an incredible amount of real estate, and makes it much harder to look at all my pictures.


    6.  When presented with a set of photos that might contain a person's face, I can indicate that they are or aren't that person, but I can't control click and say who that picture actually is, if it does not match the suggestion.


    On the plus side, the facial recognition seems better than it was in iPhoto.  This does not make up for the other stuff.  I regret updating for sure.  If you want to release a replacement app, it should at least be on a par with the app it replaces, feature wise.

  • Reply 14 of 50
    therfmantherfman Posts: 52member
    I find it laughable that this is being promoted as a replacement for Aperture. Where are the brush adjustments, for one thing? How about plug-ins?
  • Reply 15 of 50
    rubaiyatrubaiyat Posts: 277member

    I'll be trying Photos on my throw away copy of Yosemite.


    I have a fair idea what I am getting into and don't want to be like the people who "upgraded" to all of Apple's other "new improved software" and got caught with no way out. Particularly if it moves my images into a library that nothing else can read.


    Unfortunately we are currently in Apple's spin cycle. 


    It announces and pushes out dumbed down versions of previous software that people relied on. The dumbed down software attracts dumbed down users. Dumbed down as they are, they are never dumbed down enough, so Apple dumbs them down even further. It does that by removing or hiding functionality to the point of irrelevance. 


    I can put up with it hiding stuff because I might not like it, but will find it eventually, I just can't put up with not being able to do my work.


    Brands are useful because they give you an attached assurance of what a product will probably be like. Apple has moved from an assurance of quality, security and productivity to one of untested random changes, loss of files and time wasting.


    Just as I worked hard to remove Microsoft when it turned into bloatware, and Adobe, when it became rentware, I am now engaged in replacing Apple software as it goes nowhere.

  • Reply 16 of 50
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member

    TIL the few people actually using Aperture sure like to post online.


    In all seriousness, Photos is a fantastic application and basically THE photo organization app I've been dreaming about since the first day of iPhoto. I don't care that it has basic editing function. Thats not what its for. I'm sorry to those of you bummed about the discontinuation of Aperture, but that it is a standalone event not related to the release of Photos. Apple could have maintained Aperture at the same time if they wanted to. They don't. 


    So, Photos is great, and I'm glad every iPhoto user now gets to experience the sheer joy of a modern Photos experience when they migrate over.

  • Reply 17 of 50
    podlasekpodlasek Posts: 32member

    Hmm... the Photos update seems to break the physical syncing of photos through iTunes?:???:


    I physically sync to certain devices using different settings (over 500GB of photos, not wanting to have to buy the cloud storage going forward)


    Hopefully a fix for iTunes is coming, as it only seems to recognize Aperture and a folder location anymore.:\

  • Reply 18 of 50
    rubaiyatrubaiyat Posts: 277member

    1984 NewSpeak at its finest.


    "I'm so glad I can't do X. I never wanted to do X, and now that I have no way of doing X it is so liberating."


    "My choice, no-one is making me do it".


    The equivalent of wearing a digital Burka. 

  • Reply 19 of 50
    tokyojimutokyojimu Posts: 527member
    I have 29,000 photos in iPhoto, most of which I've manually geotagged. I use this all the time to find pictures taken at a specific location. I can't believe they would remove this feature.
  • Reply 20 of 50
    Sorry but Photos is not an Aperture replacement. Not by a long shot even though Aperture was long in the tooth. Photos is for the consumer who does not know much or expect much from editing photos. This is for the Instagram, take a photo of my food crowd. Not someone who needs a powerful editing tool. This is baby steps.
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