Hipstamatic Oggl is an iPhone by Hipstamatic, LLC. It’s available now as a free download on the Apple App Store and carries additional in-app purchases.
Hipstamatic Oggl is an image editing and sharing service and social network. When users first open Hipstamatic Oggl, they’re prompted to make an account. Unfortunately, there’s no option to sign in with other social media accounts, so users will be forced to create a proprietary Hipstamatic account, which only takes a minute. Once in, users will be shown a brief overview, then thrown into the wild, expected to learn all of Hipstamatic Oggl’s features with minimal assistance.
Hipstamatic Oggl is filled with a ton of features. Instagram users will feel right at home taking pictures and adding filters, but the depth Hipstamatic Oggl offers in that area is far more impressive than Instagram. When users snap a picture, they can go into their gallery and apply two types of filters. One filter simulates different camera lenses, while the other simulates different film. These two elements can be combined to create beautiful images, but some of the combinations don’t work well, so users will need to spend some time discovering what fits and what does not.
Once the filter is set, users can tag the photo with a location, add a caption for other users, then upload it to the Hipstamatic Oggl servers, or a variety of social media platforms. Browsing uploaded images on Hipstamatic Oggl should be one of the most fun experiences, but instead turns into a bit of a chore. Users can easily see photos of people they’ve followed, or check out photos in which they were tagged. Other than that, there’s not many sorting options available. Editor’s Picks show off images of many styles, Global will show all new uploads, and there are a few other general options. Users who want to search for images based on caption or location are out of luck, unless Hipstamatic adds their desired location to their featured list.
The biggest problem with Hipstamatic Oggl is navigation. The layout relies heavily on images and symbols to guide users, and many of them aren’t self-explanatory. It’s not difficult for users to press something and be completely unaware of what is going to happen, as the app’s initial overview fails to explain any of these features. There are a few area where the interface is easy to use, like when sorting images or checking out a user’s profile page. Other than those instances, users are likely to become frustrated until they learn how everything works.
Hipstamatic Oggl has two avenues of monetization: ads and subscriptions. During our testing, we didn’t take notice of any ads, but Hipstamatic insists they’re there, and removing them is one of the benefits of subscriptions. The other major perk for subscribers is access to the full collection of Hipstamatic lens and film filters, with new options available each month. There are a lot of filters available to subscribers, and there’s no option to purchase them individually. There’s enough variety for casual users to be happy without subscribing, but those who want more options can subscribe to Hipstamatic Oggl in two plans: three months for $2.99 and 12 months for $9.99.
Hipstamatic Oggl will appeal most to users who like the photo filtering of apps like Instagram, but want a larger number of options. The confusing interface, required use of a proprietary account, and relatively limited free filters are likely to turn away many users. Those who manage to learn how Hipstamatic Oggl works will find a very detailed photo service that is likely compatible with the social network of their choosing. However, many users are likely to end up frustrated and go back to their app of choice.
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