By Eric Pankoke on Thu, 10/22/2009
I don't normally write about non-game apps, mainly because I quite frankly don't do much with my iPod besides play games and listen to music. However, I recently ran into a problem with my computer where Windows Explorer won't recognize my iPod, so I cannot copy images to my computer. This usually isn't a problem except for the fact that I will often take screen shots of games that I am reviewing, and I really don't have the patience to email those screen shots to myself to get them off of my device. Thankfully there's an app for that, and it's called WiFi Photo.
The program is really simple to use. You can select photos from your photo library, or if you have an iPhone from your Camera roll. The screen to select photos is the one part of the application I'm not really fond of. To select a photo you click on it, and then some processing happens and you can pick another photo. You can't unselect photos, so if you accidentally clicked one you don't want (or just decide that you don't want one) you have to cancel out of the selection screen and start over. I'm guessing that the processing is the application converting the image to a JPG and adding it to a zip file. Personally, I'd rather see the selection screen just let you mark and unmark photos at well, and only have the processing occur once you've selected Done.
Once you've selected the photos you'd like you get a screen that displays an oblong thumbnail of each image, including the dimensions and file size of the image. You also get a message at the bottom of the screen telling you what address to put into the web browser of the computer you wish to retrieve the photos on. At any point you can add more photos to the current setup by hitting the + button in the upper right corner of the application. To start over you hit the trash can in the upper left corner of the screen to clear your current choices, then the + to add new choices. There is a setting in options that tells the application not to prompt for a location to search for files each time you want to add some. This is especially helpful for iPod users who are never going to access the Camera roll that they don't have anyway. You can also tell the program to automatically delete any files when the application exits. This only deletes the JPG conversions and the zip file that WiFi Photo created, not the source images. You can even specify via a slider the level of quality you want the application to use when converting images, as well as whether you want the browser to automatically download the zip file when a user connects to the page or not.
From the "client" end of things, all you need is a web browser that supports images (unless you are going to just download the zip file). The application uses port 8080, which is not configurable, so if you are behind any kind of firewall that has the port blocked you won't be able to use the application. Also, the program gets the IP address for the "server" from the wifi connection, so if you're trying to steal an external source's wifi connection - in an office setting, for example - don't expect that your office computers will be able to see the supplied web address. The computer you are trying to access the pictures from must be connected to the same network that the wifi connection is linked to. That being said, when all the packets are aligned correctly you'll get a nice page in your browser that allows you to download each image individually, or all the files collectively via a link to a ZIP compressed file.
In the end I was quite impressed with this application. It was easy to get running, quick to configure, and the resulting images look pretty sharp. Not to mention the fact it has saved me the headache of trying to figure out why Windows Explorer won't recognize my device any more. A better way of adding or deleting images would be nice, but otherwise I'm quite happy with WiFi Photo.