Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Organize your smartphone’s pictures with SplashPhoto


By Heather Wardell

While my Zire 72 came with the Media program for organizing and displaying digital photographs, it's quite limited. I was looking forward to seeing what SplashPhoto would offer that the standard program did not.

Once installed, SplashPhoto found my pictures without any trouble, and added a few of its own as samples. I was surprised that SplashPhoto didn't keep my pictures in their original categories, instead dumping them all into Unfiled.

Fortunately, I don't use a lot of categorization, but you have all of your pictures carefully divided into albums, you'll be disappointed by this.

SplashPhoto's desktop is where you would do most of your manipulation of pictures. It allows you to resize images to best suit your handheld's screen, zoom in on a particular part of the picture, and adjust the brightness and contrast. Figure A shows the desktop and a picture of my cat Nigel in the process of being adjusted.


Nigel probably needs adjusting more than his picture does. (click for larger image)

The handheld version doesn't have most of these editing features, which does make sense given the limited screen size. On the handheld, you can zoom into a picture to bring it up to 100% of its full size. You can also move the picture from a memory card to the handheld's internal memory and back again, and can change its name and category.

Figure B shows the same picture on the handheld.


Nigel up close and personal (click for larger image)

The standard Media program allows you to go into a picture's details screen and then scroll from picture to picture within the details, ideal for renaming a number of pictures. SplashPhoto doesn't allow this, and I found it a frustrating omission since I am used to being able to do this.

The one feature that makes SplashPhoto great is its slideshow. It will run through your pictures either in order or randomly, and can be set to start the slideshow automatically when your handheld is charging. I found, though, that the slideshow sometimes didn't start when the handheld was charging, even though it was set to do so.

I expected more from what SplashData calls "The ultimate image viewer for PDAs and smartphones" given the outstanding performance of the other applications from SplashData. What SplashPhoto does, it does well, with the exception of the slideshow issue. And yet, I thought it would do more. I rate it a three.


This marks the end of our review series on Splash products. But there's one more coming: a review of SplashWallet, the bundle that contains all four. That's up next week. Stay tuned.