While Photoshop is still the most famous image editing app out there, there are now plenty of alternatives. Pixelmator is quite popular on macOS for instance. It has been around for a few years now, and the Pixelmator team is about to launch a brand new app — Pixelmator Pro.
The company released a video, a ton of images and a website packed with information about Pixelmator Pro. It’s still unclear if the good old version of Pixelmator is going to stick around after the release of the new app. But Pixelmator Pro looks like the successor of Pixelmator, a major update.
The most stark change is the interface. The existing version of Pixelmator relies on many different windows with tools, layers and more. But if you’re working on a tiny laptop, it can get messy really quickly.
Pixelmator Pro provides a single, unified window with everything you need. You can open menus on the left and right of the image. You can move and resize the entire app much more easily.
Everything you do in Pixelmator Pro is non-destructive. You can go back to your edit history and undo something in particular without having to hit Command-Z a dozen times. It’s going to look and feel like a native Mac app with tabs, full screen mode, Split View, iCloud support, Touch Bar buttons, versions, etc.
All the usual features are still there, but they’ve been rethought. You can adjust the colors of your photos, draw, select and retouch images, write text and edit layouts. And everything should be more efficient.
Pixelmator Pro also leverages Apple’s Core ML framework for machine learning features. For instance, the app will be able to detect the content of your image and automatically name your different layers. Pixelmator Pro will detect the horizon to straighten your photos. The app should also be smarter when it comes to selections and repair tools.
The app isn’t available yet. The company says that it should be released on the App Store at some point this fall. I wouldn’t be surprised if the company switches its business model, moving away from one-time purchases to a subscription-based app like Ulysses.
As Fedrico Viticci spotted, the company is also working on another app called Vectormator as well as an iPad version of Pixelmator Pro. With Affinity Photo and Pixelmator Pro, there are now plenty of options if you don’t want to subscribe to Photoshop.