Yesterday, Adobe released a beta version of “Photoshop Express,” a toned down, hosted version of it’s popular photo-editing tool.  It’s targeted at amateur designers, giving them basic tools to take their photo-editing skills a step or two further than what paint offers, without shelling out for costly software. 

More details here

I played with it a bit yesterday and found it to be very intuitive and kinda fun.  I just took the test drive, which lets you play with some preloaded pictures.  Or, you can sign up for the beta to get a few more features as well as use your own pictures.  I’m sure a designer would scoff at it, but for someone like me who often needs to do some simple edits like color correction or basic effects, it seemed to more than fit the bill.  Give it a try here.

I’m loving the trend towards more hosted applications, and look forward to full versions of software like Photoshop making its way online.  I’m hoping more and more move to the ad-supported model as well.  For the consumer, I think you’d gladly hold on to your $499 and see some ads.  And for advertisers, talk about targeting a niche market! 

Take a look at some of the features in this screencap I took:

Adobe Photoshop express features


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