Pixlr Express for Android review: Your go-to photo editor for Android

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CNET Editors' Rating

5 stars Spectacular
  • Overall: 9.3
  • Installation and Setup: 9.0
  • Features and Support: 9.0
  • Interface: 9.0
  • Performance: 10.0
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Pixlr Express offers more than 600 effects that all work well and are easy to use. Its Auto Fix and Focal Blur (tilt-shift) tools are particularly effective.

The Bad App doesn't warn you before backing out, which can result in lost work. A Recent Files picker upon launch would be nice.

The Bottom Line With over 600 effects on board, Pixlr Express is one of the most powerful Android apps in its category. Despite its minor flaws, it should be your go-to mobile photo editor.

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With a name like Pixlr Express, Autodesk's new flagship photo editor for Android sounds as if it should be a relatively light app with only a few basic features. On the contrary, though, it is about as powerful a mobile photo editor as we've seen.

You may not know it, but Autodesk, maker of the design and engineering staple AutoCAD, has been in the Android photo editor game for a while now. Previously, the company's Pixlr-o-matic was one of the more popular photo editors on Google Play, but its newest title, Pixlr Express is significantly more powerful.

Upon launch, Pixlr Express's start-up screen lets you either take a new photo or choose an existing photo to manipulate. From there, the app transports you to the editing screen, where all of its powers are split among four categories: Adjustments, Effects, Overlays, and Borders.

Adjustments
The Adjustment menu offers a wide array of photo manipulation powers, by way of familiar tools such as Crop, Rotate, Blur, Color Fix, Brightness and Contrast, Sharpen, De-Noise, Red Eye Reduction, and Whiten. Dive a little deeper, and you'll see that each of these tools comes with its own settings, so you can micro-adjust any changes before you commit them. For instance, you can control the radius of the Sharpen tool and the tolerance of the Red Eye tool. These sorts of fine tuners offer a huge advantage over many of the other tap-to-apply photo editors out there.

One adjustment that Instagram users will surely love is Focal Blur, which is essentially Instagram's tilt-shift tool but with more control. Another neat feature is Color Splash, which can turn an entire photo to black and white, except for a single color of your choosing.

Like Tilt-shift, the Focal Blur adjustment lets pick a region to keep in focus while blurring the rest of your photo. Screenshot by Jaymar Cabebe/CNET

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Where to Buy

Pixlr Express (Android)

Part Number: com.pixlr.express

Free

Quick Specifications See All

  • Category Photography and image editing
  • Compatibility Android
About The Author

Jaymar Cabebe covers mobile apps and Windows software for CNET. While he may be a former host of the Android Atlas Weekly podcast, he doesn't hate iOS or Mac. Jaymar has worked in online media since 2007.