Make the news with Glopho

IMG_2355Glopho is a new iOS app from Eigo. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store and carries no additional in-app purchases.

Glopho’s core concept is that it allows both amateur and professional photographers the ability to upload their photographs on a variety of topics and potentially make some money from them, with proceeds split 50/50 between Glopho and the photographer whose pictures are sold. In practice, however, Glopho is simply yet another photo-centric mobile-social network, albeit one which eschews the usual Instagram-style presentation in favor of something a little more distinctive.

Glopho may be browsed without registering. The main screen allows access to Glopho’s three main image categories — Reality, Locality and Celebrity — along with feeds for Editor’s Choice and the most recent photos posted on the service. Tapping on one of these categories pops it open and allows the photos within to be browsed in a “filmstrip”-style view, with horizontal swipes required to scroll through. Tapping on an individual photo allows the user to view additional information about it, including the title and description given to it by the photographer, the date and location it was taken, the user who took it and comments from other users. It’s possible to share the photo on Twitter and Facebook from this details page as well as submit new comments, follow the photographer and also report the photo’s content if appropriate. The “report” button is concealed behind an iOS standard “share” button for some reason, while the Facebook and Twitter sharing facilities are simply listed on the photo’s details page. This isn’t the only interface inconsistency in the app — tapping the “login” button when already logged in invites the user to upload a photo, for example, and then requires not one but two presses on a “back” button to return to the main menu — but for the most part the app is reasonably intuitively designed.

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Adding a new photo to Glopho is a simple matter of tapping either the “Upload photo” or “Take photo” button at the bottom of the screen, choosing or taking an image and then filling out the relevant information, which includes a titles, location (automatically calculated via GPS, though the exact location of the “pin” showing the photo’s location may be customized), date, caption, category and tags. Users may optionally choose to automatically share their new submissions to Facebook and/or Twitter, and must agree to Glopho’s Terms and Conditions before uploading any images. These conditions include warranting that uploaded material is the user’s own original work and that they own all rights necessary to submit it to Glopho, that it was not produced in the course of the user’s employment for another organization, that it does not violate laws or codes and that it is not defamatory, threatening, obscene, distressing, sexist, racist or “otherwise offensive.”

Once the photo has been submitted, it is available for all other Glopho users and browsers to see. The “sell your photos” aspect of Glopho is only accessible via the service’s Web incarnation and is frankly rather underdeveloped at this time — there is no e-commerce facility to the site, and instead those interested in purchasing high-resolution versions of the photos on Glopho are invited to email the company directly. If Glopho is serious about providing its library of photos for sale to news organizations and the like, as appears to be the intention, it needs to focus on this side of things as soon as possible. The mobile app and social side of things are solid and reasonably well-implemented at present; now it just needs to take the required next steps to bring the service in line with the vision that has been set out for it.

You can follow Glopho’s progress with AppData, our tracking service for mobile and social apps and developers.