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Apple Photos for OS X release date rumours and Q&A: Photos for Mac 'may launch tonight'

Karen Haslam | March 11, 2015
Apple announced a brand-new Photos app for Mac OS X alongside Yosemite, but we're been waiting a long time to get our hands on the new Photos app. Luckily Apple has now released a beta version, so in this feature we look at the beta version of the new Photos app and its new features and enhancements, and weigh up the clues and rumours about its final release date.

Photos for OS X looks similar to the iOS edition, but has also inherited some design elements from Yosemite.

As with Photos for iOS, in Photos for Mac you'll see your photos and video in the Years, Collections and Moments views.

If you click on the Years view you will see tiny images of all the photos you took that year. Tap on a thumbnail to zoom in on that image. As in iOS 8 if you tap and drag around your Years folder and slightly larger versions of individual images will pop up so you can locate the one you are looking for. It's similar to iPhoto's Events view.

The next level down is the Moments view, which will show you all your images taken at a particular event, says your friend's birthday party.

You can also locate images taken at a particular location by clicking on the place name that appears in the top-left of the window, this will take you to a map with thumbnails of the images you have taken at that location over the years.

Other Mac viewing options include Photos, Shared, Albums, and Projects.

After enabling iCloud Photo Sharing you will see the photo streams you are sharing, or have access to, under Shared.

If you click Albums you will see all the albums you have created and some that are preconfigured. Albums include: All Photos, Faces, Last Import, Favourites, Panoramas, Vides, Slow-mo, Time-lapse and Bursts, just like in iOS. Doubleclick on the album to see what's inside.

Projects are essentially slideshows, books, cards and calendars. These have been tweaked and improved compared to iPhoto (and Aperture). For example, the book creation tool is more streamlined, and there is a new Square book format as well as a couple of new book themes.

Slideshows can be configured from a drop-down window and also gain a few new themes. You can still export slideshows as movies.

You'll also find a new option for printing panorama images and an option for ordering square prints.

Photos for Mac OS X: Viewing and editing images

Double-click on the thumbnail of an image to view it full-sized. You can select multiple images

You can also click a Plus button to add an image to an album, smart album, or project.

Click on the Share icon to send that image to iCloud Photo Sharing, Mail, Messages, AirDrop, Twitter, or Facebook.

Press Command-I to see the Info window. You will be able to see information about the image including: (some) EXIF data, the location (if it was geotagged), keywords, and face ID.

Editing options include the following tools: Enhance, Rotate, Crop, Filters, Adjust, and Retouch.


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