by Josh Biggs in Mobile, Tech on 2nd March 2023

Check out this list of seven best free camera apps for iPhone, using which you can turn your phone into a full-fledged camera. Camera applications installed by default don’t provide photographers with enough opportunities to express their creative vision. In most cases, you just need to focus, set the exposure and click the shutter button. Those fond of photography and preferring to adjust all the setting themselves, surely want to have more freedom when it comes to taking images even on iPhone.

1. Halide

Halide free iPhone camera app is very popular among mobile photography enthusiasts, who praise it primarily for its convenience: all settings are adjusted using intuitive gestures.

If you aren’t sure about using the fully manual mode with a basic pack of settings, you can always switch to the “auto” mode. Halide boasts a very handy feature called Focus Peaking, which displays the details of the image on which the camera focuses: they become red.

Those people, who have iPhone with a dual camera, can enjoy another special function known as Depth Peaking. It works according to a similar scheme, but demonstrates the depth of field.

In other words, you will see which part of the photo will be clear and which one will turn into a blurred background.

  • Familiar interface for iPhone owners
  • Focus Peaking feature
  • People, who have iPhone with a dual camera, can take advantage of Depth Peaking feature

2. Instasize

Many mobile editing apps have come and gone but you’ll never remove Instasize once you have it! First, Instasize’s slider tool is a joy to use. You can adjust your image’s settings down to the granular level so you can really blend the colors, shadows, and lighting. Instasize also recommends the best filters to use with your photo.

Instasize is also a creative tool that lets you add artistic borders to your photos. It is preloaded with patterns such as Film, Minimalist, DIY, Paint, and other trendy themes that you can use to fill your borders. If you need to make collages, Instasize allows you to group together up to 6 different photos.

When you’re done layouting your images, you can also add stylized text using curated fonts. You need to add a watermark to your photos so you can use the built-in text tool to add your signature to your work.

You can start using Instasize for free but we recommend upgrading to Premium for $4.99/month to unlock full functionality. Here are more ways that iOS users can enjoy the app:

  • Beauty Tools to retouch acne, blemishes, etc.
  • Access to Unsplash’s free image library
  • Video editing

3. ProCamera

This free camera app for iPhone can boast a full range of settings, which you can use in semi-automatic and fully manual mode. Moreover, ProCamera also offers a stabilization function and has an intuitive interface for precise focus control and exposure adjustment.

In addition to the standard JPG format, this application also shoots in RAW format, and photos can then be slightly processed in the built-in editor.

Perhaps, one of the main advantages of ProCamera is the full-screen shooting mode. By turning it on, you can take a picture by tapping anywhere on the screen. If you have a closer look at the app’s settings, you will find a composition grid, a histogram, a timer and burst shooting mode.

Not all free camera apps for iPhone featured on this list can offer such capabilities. Besides, ProCamera has a good portrait mode and the function of switching between two cameras. The application offers remote control using the Apple Watch and an additional connection to Adobe Creative Cloud.

  • Possibility to shoot in RAW
  • Access to Adobe Creative Cloud
  • Convenient work with a dual camera

4. Moment Pro Camera

Moment Pro provides a complete kit of settings, like a real DSLR camera. Firstly, you can choose the format and size of the images and enable geo-location. Each image is saved with detailed metadata: shooting parameters, date, place and time.

Secondly, this is a manual camera app for iPhone, which means that you can independently set the sensitivity, white balance, shutter speed, focus and exposure depending on the shooting conditions and the result you want to get.

A true helper in your work is a histogram that displays too dark or too light objects in the frame. There is a free trial version of Moment Pro Camera available on the App Store.

Android users can’t take advantage of this possibility and have to spend money if they are interested in getting this application.

  • You can shoot in RAW, HEIF, HEVC, TIFF and JPEG
  • Works with Apple 3D Touch
  • Absolute compatibility with Moment lenses

5. Lightroom Mobile App

This is an incredibly powerful and, at the same time, convenient program for image editing, which, in addition to the desktop, is also available in a mobile version.

You may be a bit confused, why I have added a picture editor to this list, as there are more free camera apps for iPhone designed specifically for the shooting purpose. But once you open Lightroom Mobile, you will also see a camera there – just click on the icon with a camera.

The range of settings has everything you need: shutter speed, white balance and light sensitivity. You can fix the focus on the subject (this free iPhone camera app displays exactly what you focused on) and change the exposure by swiping on the screen left or right.

Lightroom Mobile makes it possible to resize images, set a timer and turn on the composition grid, and also has the function of displaying oversaturated objects in a frame. The main advantage of Lightroom Mobile is that you get both a good camera and a powerful photo editor.

  • Absolutely free
  • Features a powerful image editor
  • Supports RAW shooting

6. Camera+

A great tool for taking photos. This free iPhone camera app has a beautiful interface and a similar set of functions to ProCamera, but unlike the latter, they are scattered across the program, so sometimes you may get confused.

Camera+ allows you to adjust the exposure regardless of the focus. There is a grid in the viewfinder with a level that helps keep the horizon line straight.

White balance settings have presets for various shooting conditions. Besides, you can create your own presets if you often shoot in certain places.

A user can select various shooting modes and set the shutter speed as needed. You can quickly view photos in the Lightbox section. If you need to bring pictures to perfection, use the parameters, filters and effects available in the photo editor.

Once the picture enhancement is finished, share the results right from this application. Another advantage of Camera+ is a customizable widget.

  • Integrated photo editor
  • You can take images from the notification bar
  • Exposure settings regardless of the focus

7. VSCO Cam

This free iPhone camera app is simple, but allows you to get the most out of the hardware platform of your smartphone. Even frames without processing, simply taken with VSCO Cam, look significantly better than frames shot with an iOS built-in camera application.

You can take and process RAW photos with full manual settings and manual focus.

To get full control over the frame in the viewfinder, you can use a level and verticals. The basic mode provides the possibility to adjust white balance.

If you click on the Advanced button, you will get access to more delicate shooting options – ISO, focus adjustment and shutter speed.

Besides, you can use free and paid VSCO filters, which have made this free camera app for iPhone so popular.

The built-in photo editor allows you to perform lots of operations with a photograph – there are lots of tools for any task. At the same time, the app preserves the high resolution of the image and it is possible to export the result without any problems to VSCO Cam’s storage.

  • Minimalistic interface
  • Vast image post-processing capabilities
  • RAW shooting

8. Obscura Camera

This is one of the most user-friendly free camera apps for iPhone. When you open the application, you can immediately see a camera and a guide on how to get to the gallery.

Depending on your shooting skills, you can either choose manual or an auto mode to take pictures. There are standard exposure controls, while shutter speed and ISO settings are quite difficult (even impossible) to fine-tune. Actually, this is a disappointing fact.

When you are done photographing, open the library, select a shot and apply the necessary changes. Actually, you can use only filters to enhance your picture. It is impossible to alter exposure, enhance contrast and make a photo sharper.

  • Control wheel to regulate basic parameters
  • RAW capture, Live Photo and Depth Capture
  • Adjustable gestures
  • Focus Peaking feature

Categories: Mobile Tech