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Hands-on with Facebook's standalone camera app

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Facebook is getting serious about mobile. (AP)

Facebook launched a new app this week called Camera. It's a separate app for Apple devices that allows you to share photos with your Facebook friends.

You may be thinking, "Big deal. I can already do that with the Facebook app I use now. Why do I need another app?"

Well if you love sharing photos and perusing photos from your friends and family, you'll like this. It highlights the photo sharing experience and adds features to the camera that the Facebook app does not have. And lets face it: Facebook is useful if for no other reason than to share, share, share photos and more photos!

I've been testing the app and I have to say I like it a lot. So much so that I'd rather spend time using Camera than the main Facebook app which I find sluggish and bloated. Camera is light and fast.

Here's how it works.

Download the free app and sign in with your Facebook credentials. It'll then ask for access to your phone's camera roll. If you agree to give it access you'll see all the photos on your phone pop up on the top of the app. Don't worry they haven't suddenly been uploaded to Facebook. You can screen out the racy ones. Only you can see all of your photos in the app and then you can select the more flattering PG ones to upload.

My favorite feature lets users share multiple photos all at once, which the old Facebook app does not do. The old app makes you post one at a time, which can be a pain when you are sharing photos from an event. You can also add filters, crop and resize, and add basic enhancements, which are fun to play with.

This begs the question: Why can't I do all of this in the regular Facebook app? Perhaps you will be able to soon but for now it's a gaping hole. Just this week I tried to upload a photo I'd taken from a neighborhood picnic and the main Facebook app stalled repeatedly until the point at which I gave up.

Facebook recently purchased Instagram, a photo sharing app, for $1 billion. Instagram had a lot of the features that Facebook Camera has now. 

This new app is proof that the company is wasting no time in showing that it is taking this acquisition seriously -- and that mobile is a big part of the company's future.

Clayton Morris is a Fox and Friends host. Follow Clayton's adventures online on Twitter @ClaytonMorris and by reading his daily updates at his blog.

 

 

 

Clayton Morris joined FOX News Channel (FNC) in 2008 and is the co-host of FOX & Friends Weekend. Clayton covers technology for FOX News Channel and FOX Business Network. He’s also the creator of ReadQuick a speed reading app for iOS.