Everyone thinks they’re great at photography. No really. I’m not kidding. So in a world where we all consider ourselves a modern day Ansel Adams, EyeEm’s new AI-powered app brings a healthy dose of reality to us amateur iPhone shutterflies.
With the help of an AI called EyeEm Vision, The Roll analyses your photos, rates them on a 0-100 scale and adds keywords for easy search (much like Google Photos). EyeEm says it’s currently using thousands of different tags and of course the best thing about AI is that the app is always learning, so more will likely be added as more people use the app.
I plugged my phone into The Roll and after a minute or two, my 137 pictures were analysed, rated and sorted. Images I was particularly proud of were rated at paltry 58 per cent (or lower) while others, which I had more or less dismissed as average, climbed to the 80s and even 90s.
The Roll says it uses “artistic photography principles” to rate photos, but sadly doesn’t tell you why your pics are garbage or greatness. Instead, the rating system helps sort similar images into groups, then push what it considers the absolute best photo to the top of the pile. Unless a future update gives The Roll a more complex intellect, the app acts like a stand-offish art professor.
Aside from this one missing feature (which would be neat), The Roll’s tagging system is incredibly impressive. When you dig a little deeper into a particular photo’s score, the app shows the picture’s aperture, shutter speed, ISO, focal length and what iPhone the photo was shot on. It also shows a small map pinpointing where the photo was taken and a list of automatic keywords for searching.
With this photo of Independence Hall in Philadelphia (which I admit is not great, OK?!?!), The Roll additionally categorised it under: Architecture, building exterior, building, low angle view, sky, tree, clock tower, city, cloud, day, tall, outdoors, facade, travel destination, city life, blue, cloudy, nature.
Add “US birthplace” and I think that about covers it.
In the end, The Roll is built for keeping tons of photos easily organised while promoting some of your very best shots. It doesn’t have a smart assistant like Google Photos that can make quick collages and videos of similar photos and it doesn’t import video either. But it’s a smarter extension of the iPhone’s camera roll, which honestly leaves a lot to be desired.
You can download the app for free on iOS.