Today marks the end of Affinity Photo‘s beta and the launch of version 1.0 with an introductory price of only $39.99 USD. Affinity’s Project Manager, Dale Cook, was thankful for the overwhelming interest in the beta program for Affinity Photo. “Around a quarter of a million participated (in the public beta), and around half of those were in the first two weeks. Definitely a fantastic response,” Dale states.
Like Affinity Designer, Photo has been built from the ground up from the developers at Serif, keeping their focus on speed and agility. Dale says that early feedback instantly pitched Affinity Photo against the industry’s decades-long market leader, which was of course incredible for the team and made for great exposure. The project goals were high from the outset, but to be positioned against the market leader by independent journalists and industry professionals before they’d even approached a release version was received by the team as impressive, and inspiring. “For some people Affinity Photo came out of nowhere although for the dev team it was after over 4 years of development—the devs knew it was good but that doesn’t mean we expected so many people to agree, or to agree so quickly”, says Dale.
Dale is on the PR and marketing side of the Affinity team. As someone who knows the app but is foreign to the coding process, he keep coming back to loving the speed. “It’s just always something to be thankful for and other apps are now even more frustrating. I think photographers will soon take some Photo features for granted, because of course they should “just work”, but when they work in real-time, with live previews, instant results, no lag, no beach balls, then it’s a gift that keeps on giving every day. In a similar way I am also highly impressed by how much of Affinity Photo is non-destructive, no need to constantly duplicate layers multiple times to apply different processes… it’s almost nirvana.”
A few things that make Affinity Photo unique are its real-time performance, fresh thinking about photographers and retouchers workflows, modern suite behavior, loads of non-destructive editing, and a sprinkling of other magical features. Photo comes equipped with over 8,000 savable history steps, so users can go back in time to old files and undo old steps (or see how edits were made). There’s also the ability to switch between purchased Affinity apps, with one file format, and each app able to undo and redo history steps regardless of where they were first made. You also get non-destructive and super-fast effects with the addition of Live Filters earlier—applying lighting or blurs instantly on the image rather than being forced into a dialog and clicking ‘apply’ is very refreshing.
Worth the investment
So far, there has been tons of high praise from professionals, Apple, and reviewers. The Affinity Suite seems to be poised as a winner for Serif and if the buzz around Photo is an indicator as to what will happen in the next couple months, it looks as if Serif has another winner on its hands. I’ve tried Affinity Photo’s beta and I was really impressed with the interface and low learning curve. For anyone on a Mac who is looking for a Photoshop alternative, this might be your program. For me, I would love to see Affinity go on to take over other operating systems like Linux, making Linux an attractive alternative to artists who are already interested in making the jump but afraid they’ll miss their software. But as always, I’m thinking way to far in the future. Let’s make Affinity a force to be reckoned with, first. Congrats to the Affinity team today for their successful launch and thanks for taking time out of your super-busy day to speak with me.
(All imagery courtesy of Affinity/Serif)