Picasa for Mac released with the hopes of squashing iPhoto

Why not start 2009 off with a brand new, helpful software to slap onto your Mac.  Well that’s what Google is hoping you will be doing today as they have launched a Mac version of their Picasa.  The software is a tool that allows its users to easily organise their pictures and share the pictures over the web-waves.

The launch comes four years after the original software was first launched for Windows based computers.  Now, Google hopes that the software will battle the likes of iPhoto that is currently found on Macs.  As Google says, they think the software will “help with nearly every aspect of owning and operating a digital camera.”

Google have said, “We’ve focused on making sure this first beta of Picasa for Mac matches the performance levels and most core features of Picasa on Windows – and we’ll be working on more refinements to the Mac interface and feature set as time goes on.”

Picasa also offers the chance for the user to touch up their photographs and although the software doesn’t boast the power of depth of other photography software’s such as Photoshop, the Picasa software has some interesting tools such as red-eye removal, cropping and a retouching brush.

Google went on in a statement to say, “People who already share photos on Picasa Web Albums will find that Picasa for Mac allows them to easily and quickly manage their online and local photo collections.”

Google have tried to hold a presence on Macs for a while although truthfully fairly unsuccessfully.  This new era for Google’s software pushes the company further into the eyes of the Mac users, and plans for further developments are in the works, with Google saying, “We’ll be working on more refinements to the Mac interface and feature set as time goes on.”

“While we’ve previously offered a Mac uploader and iPhoto plug-in for Picasa Web Albums, Picasa includes additional sharing features like automatic web sync.  Picasa for Mac “plays nice” with iPhoto, and takes a read-only approach to editing photos stored in the iPhoto library, duplicating files as needed, so that users’ iPhoto libraries are never affected when they use Picasa,” claimed Google.

However, Windows users still have one-up over Mac users as the Mac version is posted without helpful features such as Geotag, HTML export option, built-in webcam capture and automatic screen capture.  As Google have mentioned that developments will be carrying on for the software we can only hope that they start to introduce these features over time, after all the software is still in its Beta days.

If you are looking to run the new software on your Mac you have to have an Intel-based Mac and you must be running on a minimum of OSX 10.4.  I’m sure there won’t be many Mac users who will be crying because they don’t meet the requirements to run the software, but it’s always good to bring a little competition to software like iPhoto.

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