With a new app, Leica essentially admits that film is dead

Leica launches Lux app for iPhone. Now, all your phone needs is a fancy red dot.

Leica Lux is available in the Apple App Store. It offers eleven different profiles designed by Leica to mimic several of its famed lenses and apertures. Leica has built nickel-and-diming their customers into the app, so the experience is precisely like Leica's ownership.

This isn't Leica's first foray in trying to milk its loyal fan base for that sweet sweet recurring revenue stream. For a period of time, it moved features of its Leica Fotos app behind a pro-tier paywall, forcing photographers who transfer images from actual Leica cameras to their phones to pay for things like an Adobe Lightroom integration. Full disclosure: I was working for Leica Camera USA at the time of this Fotos Pro rollout, and I can tell you photographers were far from thrilled. It didn't take very long for Leica to reverse course and make all features of its Fotos app free again.

Leica Lux, on the other hand, is something wholly new — well, mostly. Leica Looks debuted previously in the Fotos app for owners of newer cameras like the Q3 and SL3, allowing transferred images to have profiles applied to them on an iPhone or Android device. What's really new in the Lux app is the lens bokeh simulations and the fact that you can Leica-fy your iPhone camera experience. There are some fun ideas and a nice design here for Leica fans, but it requires some nickel-and-diming to take full advantage of it.


My iPhone is almost the only camera I use, and I have a home full of cameras. I have been considering selling the bodies and lenses off, because I just do not use them. I just use the base iPhone camera app — all the extra addon apps I've found just add complexity.

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