Pixelmator 2.3 for iOS improves on selection tools to make your photos really pop

Oscar Raymundo
20 July, 2016
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Photoshop used to be synonymous with photo editing, but Pixelmator is also making a name for itself and without the Adobe price tag. And the mobile version isn’t lagging too far behind its Mac counterpart, either.

On Tuesday, Pixelmator for iOS released its latest 2.3 version, which incorporates improved selection tools for editing just specific parts of your photos. The app update adds a Quick Selection Tool, a Magnetic Selection Tool, as well as new Color Selection and Invert Selection options. Pixelmator is US$4.99 in the App Store, and version 2.3 is available as a free update to existing app users.

These advanced selection tools were already available in the Pixelmator for Mac app. Macworld contributor Jeff Carlson reviewed Pixelmator 3.5 for Mac and found it to be an “excellent, affordable alternative to Photoshop”.

pixelmator quick selection tool

“With the Quick Selection and Magnetic Selection tools, Pixelmator for iOS becomes smarter and more powerful than ever, making it much easier to edit images with incredible precision on iPad and iPhone,” Pixelmator co-founder Saulius Dailide said in a statement. “Pixelmator for Mac users have already been using these two tools and their response has been fantastic, so we’re really excited to be bringing them both to the most advanced image editor on a mobile device.”

On iOS, Pixelmator has improved its selection algorithm to match the Mac version. Using the Quick Selection Tool, you can select an object by swiping over the general area, and the tool will analyse both texture and colour to determine the outlines.

For more precise object selection, Pixelmator for iOS also has a Magnetic Selection Tool that automatically snaps around the edges using specific anchor points. This tool seems designed to help you trace objects using the Apple Pencil on the iPad Pro.

pixelmator magnetic selection tool

In fact, Pixelmator 2.3 also has made a few improvements to the Apple Pencil experience overall. The Quick Selection Tool is now pressure-sensitive, so the harder you press down the larger the selection brush will become.

Other new features include a Color Selection Tool and Invert Selection Tool that rely on a ‘content-aware smoothing algorithm’ that can tell the difference between a hard edge and a soft edge in an object.

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