Carousel (iOS) review: Easy photo sharing that's lightning-fast

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4 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Carousel lets you quickly share multiple photos and videos as part of a conversation. The app is easy to browse and offers elegant ways to send both individual shots and groups of photos.

The Bad You'll need to get your friends to download the app, too. You'll have to pay for a Dropbox subscription to go over 5GB of space.

The Bottom Line If you don't mind the 5GB storage limit, Carousel is an excellent way to share photos and videos.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

8.2 Overall
  • Features and Support 8.0
  • Interface 9.0
  • Installation and Setup 7.0
  • Performance 8.0

Carousel is a new photo and video viewer from Dropbox that doubles as a chat app so you can share pictures easily. The app uses your Dropbox account to store your media, which means you'll have the same 5GB storage limit you get with a free Dropbox account.

Dropbox has historically been a storage service focused on sharing documents between devices, but with Carousel the company is jumping into new territory. You can already share photos in a conversation with apps for Facebook and Google+, but Carousel is faster, offering a cleaner layout within its chat interface.

After spending some time with the app, I'm surprised at how easy it is to use, and think it's one of the more convenient ways to share photos available.

Swipeable interface

After you download the app, Carousel asks for permission, then uploads your photo and video library to Dropbox so you can start browsing. It looks quite a lot like the photo library on iOS, sorting your pictures by date. You don't get the overall view of all your pictures like you do on iOS. Instead, Carousel lets you make bigger jumps back or forward in time with the use of a scroll wheel at the bottom.

When you want to look at a specific photo or video, you simply touch it to zoom in full screen. Just like the iPhone photo library, you can swipe left or right to view more photos in order.

Easy to share memories

What's really cool about Carousel is how easy it is to share photos. As you browse your library, you can touch a photo to share, or you can use a button on the right to select all the photos in a group. So, if you were to go to a company picnic, for example, you could hit the Select-All button on the right at the end of the day to share the whole event. From there, you can share the photos by entering a friends e-mail address or phone number.

When you send the photos via e-mail, the recipient will receive them with a call to action to download the app. When you enter a phone number, the photos and download link will be sent to the recipient's SMS client. Once your friend downloads the free app, he or she will be able to browse and send photos just as easily.

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