Skip to main content

Someone deliberately designed the world’s worst camera app, and it’s amazing

aestheticam app worst camera ios 1500x1000
Image used with permission by copyright holder
What would happen if you combined the visual paradigms of early web design with ’80s and ’90s-inspired graphics, into a creative camera app? Aestheticam might be the end-result.

Deemed “the world’s worst camera app” by its own creator, Nick Lee, Aestheticam stands out in the world of photography apps in what can only be described as “interesting.”

Rather than designing a clean and minimal interface as we’ve come to expect from many new camera apps, Aestheticam does its best to do the complete opposite and create “the worst possible camera experience for iOS.” As strange as it sounds, it manages to do just that.

The aesthetics, if you will, is purely intentional. Lee told Digital Trends in an email that the concept was inspired by the vaporwave movement that combines retro elements and placed in a surreal (or haphazard, in Aestheticam’s case) manner. Mind you, Lee is an experienced iOS designer (he’s the CTO of Tendigi, which is responsible for building quality apps like Litely; he’s also the same guy who got Windows 95 running on an Apple Watch) and has been making software since he was a kid.

When taking a photograph, you’re presented with a very retro “shoot” button reminiscent of Windows 95 and a completely random and unusually stylized picture of former Soviet Union leader, Joseph Stalin.

Once the image of Stalin has left the screen, you can finally take photos. Or, at least attempt to. Upon snapping the shutter, the app transitions to an intermediate screen that overlays an absurd collection of ’90s-inspired images and WordArt-looking text. This strange collection of “art” is then merged with the image you captured by some random means in an attempt to create a final image, which you can then share on social media, of course.

After using the camera for a solid half hour, we’ve come to the conclusion that getting any usable photo is an absolute crapshoot. But that’s exactly the point, which, in this case, is more of a compliment than criticism. It’s easy to dismiss its usefulness, but the wacky results resonate with users (App Store reviewers have given it an average 4.5-star rating, out of five stars). If anything, it’s just funny.

Obviously, Aestheticam is intended to be tongue-in-cheek. If this app cost any money to use, we’d tell you to ignore it like the plague. But it’s free, so head on over to the iOS App Store and try this strange app for yourself.

Editors' Recommendations

Worried about the TikTok ban? Here are 5 TikTok alternatives you should use
TikTok logo on an iPhone.

TikTok, everyone's favorite social media app for watching short-form videos in an easy-to-digest format, may be facing a ban in the U.S. That’s because President Joe Biden has signed a law that would ban TikTok unless ByteDance sells its stake in TikTok within 12 months.

While this won’t have immediate effects, you may be worried about the future of your short-form video entertainment. Are there any alternatives to TikTok out there? Actually, there are quite a few. Here are some of the best TikTok alternatives that you should consider trying — just in case the TikTok ban actually happens.

Read more
Apple is about to do the unthinkable to its iPads
A person holding the iPad Air 4.

Earlier today, Apple announced that new iPads are coming this May. In my eyes, this seems to be “The Chosen One” generation. We’re likely getting an OLED display, a better keyboard (hopefully), and a chip ready to chomp the AI dinner. This gadget shall finally fill the techno-digital void in my life. At last.

Or maybe I am just trying to blindly convince myself to splurge over a thousand dollars for a machine that is “still not a Mac” and “can never be a fully fleshed out workstation.” But hey, people are spending $3,500 on a headset that gives them a headache and $700 for an AI thingamajig that can’t quite figure out what it really wants to do.

Read more
An Apple insider just revealed how iOS 18’s AI features will work
An iPhone 15 Pro Max laying face-down outside, showing the Natural Titanium color.

As Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) inches closer, the chatter around the company’s AI work has taken a feverish turn. In a year when smartphone and computing brands have focused solely on AI niceties, Apple has been uncharacteristically silent around the AI hype — eliciting concern about the brand missing the train.

However, a new report has given us a closer look at how Apple's AI dreams may come to fruition with its iOS 18 update later this year.
New details on Apple's AI plans

Read more