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Storing thousands of photos on your device can not only strain its memory, but they can also be difficult to organize. Fortunately, the best photo organizing software makes this daunting task much easier. Photo management tools select and organize your photos based on criteria such as date, location, and categories. Plus, this software can organize photos into albums and collections while adding tags keywords, labels, categories, or flags.
Some of the best photo management software also lets you edit your photos, whether individually or by applying a change to multiple photos at once.
11 best photo organizing software
Here are my recommendations for the best photo management software, including free and premium tools.
- Apple and iCloud Photos
- Google Photos
- Adobe Lightroom
- Adobe Bridge
- Zoner Photo Studio X
- CyberLink PhotoDirector
- Magix Photo Manager
- Corel PaintShop Pro Ultimate
1.Apple and iCloud Photos
If you have Mac devices, your photos can be stored in Apple Photos. Apple Photos, which comes built-in on Mac devices, lets you search through and edit your photos, as well as organize them into collections and albums. With iCloud Photos, all photos and videos are stored in the cloud so you don’t have to worry about cluttering up your device or losing your albums.
- Apple Photos are automatically arranged by day, month and year.
- The tool uses AI not only to find and focus on only the best part of your photo for better previews, but also to search for specific people, places, objects and events.
- Apple Photos also enables you to edit both photos and videos right inside the app.
Apple Photos is an app free of charge for compatible devices. However, iCloud+ is Apple’s premium subscription which charges you if you use up more than 5GB of storage or want additional features.
Apple users who want a free photo management app that organizes photos as soon as they’re taken.
Google Photos is a free photo sharing and storage service developed by Google. Once captured on you phone, the photos can be uploaded searched, organized into collections and albums, and even edited.
- Google Photos is one of the best free photo organizing software and editing systems and offers unlimited storage for high-resolution images and videos.
- Google Photo merges two or more duplicates of photos into one photo, thereby automatically clearing up storage space.
- The ‘Assistant’ feature finds relationships among your photos, compiles them together and offers to remove photos to save space if local storage is running out of space.
In Google Photos, 15GB of storage is free. If you need more storage, you can pay for a Google One subscription. The most affordable Google One plan that includes 100GB of storage space costs US$1.99 / £1.59 / AU$2.49 per month. Alternatively, you can save 16% over 12 months by paying annually.
The next plan includes a maximum capacity of 200GB and costs US$2.99 / £2.49 / AU$4.39 per month. Similarly, you can choose to pay annually and save 16% on the total cost with a possibility to pay for a yearly fee US$29.99 / £24.99 / AU$43.99.
The most spacious plan includes 2TB of storage space and it costs US$9.99 / £7.99 / AU$12.49 per month with a possibility to pay for an annual fee for US$99.99 / £79.99 / AU$124.99. If you need even more storage after subscribing to 2TB of additional space, you can pay a monthly fee of:
- 10TB: US$49.99 / £39.99 per month.
- 20TB: US$99 / £79.99 per month.
- 30TB: US$149 / £119.99 per month
Both iOS and Android users who want a free photo managing app with a subscription possibility that is going to organize the photos as soon as they’re captured.
3. Adobe Lightroom Classic
Adobe Lightroom (officially Adobe Photoshop Lightroom) is another of the best photo management software, and it’s supported on Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and tvOS (Apple TV). Its primary uses include importing, saving, viewing, organizing, tagging, editing, and sharing large numbers of digital images.
Adobe Lightroom includes a lot of features, including the ability to:
- Combine multiple different HDR photos in one
- Name faces and find them by keywords
- Add photos into new or existing collections
A subscription for Adobe Lightroom on its own or as part of the Creative Cloud Photography plan starts at US$9.99/month, while Lightroom Classic is available as part of the Creative Cloud Photography plan from US$9.99/month.
Photographers, publishers, animators, graphic designers, and web designers who edit, categorize, arrange, and make changes to photos.
4. Adobe Bridge
Adobe Bridge is often used to organize files by renaming a group of them at once, assigning colored labels or star ratings, or sorting and categorizing photos based on metadata.
Adobe Bridge has many useful features to help you organize your photos, with a few outstanding ones such as:
- Folder structure organization
- Galleries or collections of related assets
- Ability to search by file name, folder name, keywords, tags, labels, or other metadata
The starting price for Adobe Bridge is $9.99 per month, but it’s also worth looking into Adobe packages, which often include other useful tools along with Bridge.
Creative photographers and videographers who are looking to manage their visual assets in a fast and high-quality manner.
PicaJet is a powerful, feature-rich, customizable and convenient photo and video organizing and image database software that will efficiently organize your growing digital image collection.
- Utilizes OpenGL graphic acceleration and optimized image processing techniques to index your photo collection at fast speeds
- Automatically imports metadata information and folder names as categories
- Allows you to customize categories with icons from a standard or customizable icon set
- Backs up and can restore deleted, moved or added image file changes
PicaJet pricing has two plans: a single license for $59.95, or a family license for $99.95.
Users who want a powerful photo organizing tool that organizes photos efficiently.
6. Zoner Photo Studio X
Developed by the Czech-founded company Zoner Software, Zoner Photo Studio is not only one of the best photo organizing software, but it’s also a photo editing tool.
- Photos organized through descriptions, keywords, star ratings, colored labels date, or location
- Quick searches available in the Catalog
- Lets you keep tabs on your work with its tracklog feature
Zoner Photo Studio X offers an annual subscription for $49. If you want to subscribe on a monthly basis, it will cost you $4.99 per month.
Users who want a lots of different options for organizing and categorizing their photos.
Developed by ACD Systems International Inc, ACDSee is an image organizer, viewer, and editor program for Windows, macOS and iOS.
- ACDSee is known for speed, lossless RAW image editing, image batch processing, editing metadata (Exif and IPTC), rating, keywords, and categories, and geotagging.
ACDSee’ s pricing starts from US$49.99, at the time of writing.
ACDSee is a useful photo organizing and editing software for photographers, bloggers and photo editing specialists of all different experience levels.
8. CyberLink PhotoDirector
PhotoDirector is a photo managing software that offers a selection of unique AI tools, visual effects, design packs and animations.
- Helps you manage and adjust your digital photos
- Lets you share your photos on Facebook or Flickr, use them in slideshows, produce slideshow videos you can upload to YouTube, and more.
CyberLink PhotoDirector’ s pricing starts from $51.99, at the time of writing.
CyberLink PhotoDirector contains an easy-to-use interface that is suitable for beginners, while the extensive range of powerful AI-powered editing features and photo animation tools is well-suited to advanced users.
9. Magix Photo Manager
Magix Photo Manager lets you organize and store your photos without taxing your device’s storage space. Not only does Magix Photo Manager use AI technology to find duplicates, but it also has a virtual album feature that puts the same image in multiple collections without using extra space in your hard drive, effectively saving your memory.
- Provides editing tools like cropping, light correction, and other image optimization features.
- Helps sort and search the images based on names, events, locations, and other factors.
Magix Photo Manager is a free photo organizing software, although it has 2 premium versions — MAGIX Photo Manager Deluxe for $49.99 and MAGIX Photostory Deluxe for $69.99
Magix Photo Manager is aimed at both beginners who are looking for a free photo management software and advanced users who will opt for a subscription for more advanced features.
XnView is a photo organizer and general-purpose file manager used for viewing, converting, organizing and editing images. XnView comes with built-in hex inspection, batch renaming and screen capture tools.
- Can display the histogram of a photo
- Lets you create scripts to convert, manipulate and rename a batch of images at once
- Includes image editing tools, such as color and size manipulation, several filters and effects, as well as .8bf Photoshop plugins such as the Harry’s Filters 3.0 (this is included in the full version).
XnView MP is available everywhere but shares its pricing in euros. A single license will cost you €29.00, up to ten licenses will cost you €26.00 each and the cost keeps dropping down as the numbers go up. Buying over 1,000 licenses will cost you €3.90 per license.
XnView MP is provided as freeware for both private or educational use as well as non-profit organizations.
11. Corel PaintShop Pro Ultimate
PaintShop Pro’s organizational power lies in its ability to use scripts. By recording a series of photo edits into a script, you can apply the same edits to other photos without having to redo your work. For example, you could batch process multiple photos and add a watermark or resize them for better file management.
- With Corel AfterShot 3, you can quickly learn professional-grade RAW photo editing and take control of very large photo collections, making easy corrections and enhancements, and save time with batch processing tools that let you apply adjustments to one or thousands of photos at once.
- Keyboard shortcuts available for more convenient use.
- Quick access to photos through the Manage tab
- Search for files using the file directory pane on the left-hand side, thumbnail views in the center or metadata and EXIF information on the right-hand side
- Options to filter based on ratings, labels, and keywords
PaintShop Pro is another photo management software that’s available everywhere but shares its pricing in euros. At the time of writing, it costs €69.99 and includes a free Get Artistic Effects Script Bundle free.
Skilled photo editors who can take advantage of its rich features, artistic tools, and plugins.
Best photo organizing software FAQ
Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about photo management software.
How does photo organizing software work?
The best photo organizing software uses artificial intelligence to select and categorize your photos by recognizing faces, objects, location, date, or other factors. It places them in albums and lets you add tags, keywords, labels, categories, or flags. Photo management software also typically lets you edit images, with some tools allowing for batch processing, or making changes to multiple photos at the same time.
How do I search for a specific tag in my photo organizing software?
The best photo management software makes it easy to search for tags or other identifying factors, though the approach will vary depending on the tool you’re using. For instance, Google Photos and Apple Photos have a search bar that lets you type in your desired tag, while other softwares might have panels that let you filter by keyword, tag, label, or star rating.