iOS4 Emails Portrait Photos as LandscapeShare
Or does it? Actually, iOS4 sends the photos with orientation information, but that doesn’t help if your recipients see the photo sideways because of their chosen email software. Skip down if you’re looking for workarounds.
UPDATE: This is the workaround I use now.
If you’ve moved on to iOS4 you may have noticed a change in how emailed photos appear to recipients. Apparenly Apple changed the way they handle rotation and are now using an orientation tag instead of actually redrawing the photo with the pixels arranged in portrait format. Don’t worry, we’ve got a workaround.
So – your phone is sending the photo with information about how to present the photo in the correct orientation, but the recipient’s software might not acknowledge the tag. When I open the email using Apple Mail the photo is oriented correctly. Preview and many other photo apps will display the orientation correctly as well – if I download the photo.
Here’s an example you can try: Take a portrait photo with your iOS4 iPhone. Using the native Photo or Camera app email it to a Gmail address. When you open the email in Safari, IE or Firefox you’ll see a thumbnail that’s oriented correctly. But when you view the photo it’ll be in landscape mode.
If you download the photo and open it with an app like Preview you can take a look at the tags by hitting Command + I. You’ll see an orientation entry that might say something like “Rotated 90° CCW.” (Pictured above)
So – here’s the workaround: Use an app like Best Camera. When I send photos using Best Camera they show up correctly in web-based Gmail. I don’t believe Best Camera has been updated for iOS4 and that could explain the difference. Best Camera is currently $2.99.
You could also use the free Gorillacam app. But the results are a little different. If you take the portrait photo with Gorillacam it’ll show up in Gmail oriented correctly. If you use Gorillacam to send a photo you took with the native Camera app it will display in landscape mode in Gmail. Gorillacam is free.
It doesn’t really matter if Apple jumped the gun by using the tag or if certain apps or web sites are behind in recognizing the tag. The bottom line: People probably aren’t seeing your emailed iPhone photos correctly. Now you’ve got a workaround.
Note: I also emailed a photo to Flickr. It was displayed properly and the tag information was clearly visible in the metadata. However, a friend in the UK reported different results when emailing portrait photos to Flickr: They showed up as landscape. Photos like this need to be displayed correctly.
Best Camera on my iPhone 3GS with iOS4 has been exiting every time I email a photo from it, but the photo is still getting sent.| Permalink