As software and hardware manufacturers move their products towards cloud and open source services many customers have begun to ditch traditional software that they would normally pay for. I remember an early time in my life when MS Paint was just about the coolest program someone could master. How the times have changed, these days anyone willing to use open source or online programs can literally do more than MS Paint and in some cases Adobe Photoshop without paying hundreds of dollars.

Photo Image Editing Online

Let’s examine several popular programs that are free to use and both web and software download friendly

Free Photo Editing For Beginners

Pixlr.com should look familiar the moment  you launch the website, that’s because it pretty much mimics MS Paint. One of my favorite parts of this program is that it does not require a user to sign up for an account. Simply upload a photo from your computer, your favorite social network or a URL and you’re ready to go. You can also choose a blank template to get started.

Much like MS Paint users can crop and add text to images, fill in colors, add objects and layers and even use the magic lasso to isolate certain parts of a photo.

Pixlr doesn’t just provide basic online photo editing it also offers layer support, adjustments related to color, saturation and other photo specific features and more.

Pixlr is not only simple, its simple with a sleek interface and the ability to save photos after you edit them. Personally I love Pixlr because it loads images quickly and allows for fast editing on the fly from a PC, Mac, Smartphone or Tablet device.

Free Photo Editing For Advanced Users

Gimp (located at Gimp.org) is an open source photo editing program that is capable of supporting tons of file formats. While out of the box .PSD (Photoshop) files are not supported this program offers free add-ons that allow for AI, PSD and other “high-end” file support.

Gimp offers such features as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. As an open-source program GIMP is always in constantly improving development which has allowed it to only get better and better every single day.

I personally like the ability to save GIMP based photos in various formats based on my needs, the program easily converts files and saves them in the format users want with gamma, layer and other elements saved or eliminated. Users can also choose the quality of the picture save to avoid massively large photo files when needed.

Gimp is free for Mac and PC users and is highly recommended as an Adobe Photoshop replacement.

Free Photo Editing for Tablet Users (iOS and Android)

I am a huge fan of the BeFunky apps for Google Android and iOS. While not as advanced as the options listed above for the other programs, users can edit files right from their tablets with this free to download and use software. Features include crop, rotate and effects editing.

With BeFunky users can rotate/flip photos, add saturation, smooth photos and perform dozens of other effects changes to their photo.

While BeFunky is free for photo editing users can pay monthly fees to receive online storage, high-resolution output and other features starting at just $4.99/month.

Do you have a favorite free photo editing application? Share your favorite in our comment section.

[Photo via BeFunky]