Oggl 1.3: has a red line been crossed?

By on August 22, 2013

Has a red line been crossed? The new Oggl update is revolutionary and like all revolutions, reactions will be divided. Some will cry foul, others will greet it as progress. The debate promises to be heated...

The major innovation is being able to import photos into Oggl. It is now possible to import any photo into Oggl whether it’s taken with Hipstamatic, or with any other application available on the app store or ... even a DSLR!

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I have carried out a test with a photo that I took with a Canon IXY 500 in 2004 in Japan (photo 1).

First I opened and cropped the photo using Photoshop; I also changed the brightness (photo 2). I changed the date of the photo using iPhoto: instead of it having been taken in 2004, the data now shows that the photo was taken today, August 2013. Then I imported it into Oggl and I chose the "Shibuya HipstaPak" (Roboto Glitter + Float). The result is amazing - this photo really looks as if it had been taken with Hipstamatic (photo 3).

Hipstamatic Oggl does however tag each photo to indicate the different photo types. If you open a photo in Oggl, a small downward pointing arrow indicates that the photo was taken using another app, a Hipstamatic logo (a yellow "H") indicates that the picture was imported from Hipstamatic Classic and a grey circle means that Oggl was used.

The EXIF data also demonstrates this new function; here is the data for the photo taken in Tokyo in 2004: "Software: Roboto Glitter Lens + Float Film (post-processed)"

Another innovation is that it is possible to zoom into a picture taken with Oggl. I must admit that this function completely took me by surprise - because it means that, Oggl does not initially produce a square photo but in actual fact, a rectangular picture!  The zoom function does not alter the Hipstamatic photo frame, and only zooms into the photo itself.

As I said, this constitutes a small revolution, and I wonder whether a red line has been crossed... at least in some regards. The weekly competitions on Facebook or Instagram risk being compromised and from now on it will be impossible to ascertain a photo's origin, without taking the time to read the EXIF data. But who, save for a few professionals, actually reads and takes an interest in EXIFs?

For me, this only makes me firmer about my position: any photo sent for publication on Hipstography.com must be an original photo so that I can read the EXIF data and know whether Oggl or Hipstamatic was used. I do publish photographs taken using Oggl, but I always indicate that they are "Oggl" photos.

I do not intend to publish any "post-processed" photos... As I have stated in the FAQ's, there are dozens of excellent sites dedicated to iphoneography in general that publish amazing photos edited by an impressive number of ever more fantastic applications. I want this site to be different and, furthermore, I'm not a fan of editing. I do not like and do not use Instagram, I have always found adding filters a bore and I consider it to be in a way cheating.

I’ve just got back from San Francisco where I was lucky enough to meet the whole Hipstamatic/Oggl team. One of the things that struck me was the general view they have of Hipstamatic and of Oggl. I will publish the interviews in September, but one very important point that everyone emphasized was the difference between Classic and Oggl. The two apps are different, they are aimed at different markets and Hisptamatic Classic will remain what it is today. The game is therefore not changing, but the gap between these two apps has just got bigger. Each of us is free to make up our own mind but I think we should avoid jumping to conclusions. And what about you - what do you think?

This post is also available in: French


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