Snapseed vs. Lightroom (2020) | The Final Showdown

Snapseed vs Lightroom
Snapseed vs. Lightroom

With new fast phones are releasing, the apps are also getting new features. You might have heard of an app called Snapseed. The app has many unique tools. Lightroom is another one to make it’s way to the top. How do both differ? The blog post takes a look at both and covers Snapseed vs. Lightroom (2020).

Table of contents


Snapseed is a photo editor for mobile phones. The app was initially developed by Nik Software and is owned by Google. The app The app has been in many lists such as best app of the year and best app of the year for iPad. The app has over 100 million downloads on Google Play.


From Lightroom to Classic and then Mobile, the collection has been growing since. The mobile app offers many great tools to start editing on the go. The app is available for mobiles, and it offers both free and premium tools. The app has over 100 million downloads as of writing this post.

Snapseed vs. Lightroom


Interface - Snapseed vs Lightroom
Interface – Snapseed vs Lightroom

Both have a completely different interface. The tools in Snapseed are in the tools section, whereas the styles tab contains some on the go styles. The option on the top is for undoing and redoing while you can see tutorials and change settings in the far-right ellipsis.

Lightroom, on the contrary, comes with the dark theme with all the tool at the bottom. At the top, you get the image info, ratings, help, share, delete and other options. Holding on the photo shows the original photo in both.


Snapseed comes with over 25 tools in total with 11 styles, while Lightroom comes with about 15, but each tool contains some sub-tools. The blog post will compare some major tools.


Snapseed offers 11 styles, 6 drama effects, 5 glamour glow effects, 12 vintage effects, 13 retrolux effects, and 14 noir effects. Altogether it comes it 56 effects to apply on the image. The styles tab also comes with an add new button from where you can add more. The button is sometimes unresponsive and does not work. Some of the filters include smooth, morning, bright, fine art etc.

Lightroom contrarily comes with profiles and presets. In total it offers 45 filters and in between 40 and 45 presets depending on the device. All are free, and each one is categorised in favourites, modern, black and white, vintage, and more.

Related: 10 Best Free Photo Editing Apps for Android and iOS

Auto fix

Auto fix Comparison of Snapseed and Lightroom
Auto fix Comparison of Snapseed and Lightroom

Snapseed and Lightroom both offer to auto-tune the image. Snapseed separates into image tuning and white balance, and Lightroom comes with one button in total. The above image comparison shows how both auto-tune the same image. Depending on the colours, one might perform better than the other. See the original image.

Crop and rotate

Crop Options - Snapseed and Lightroom
Crop Options – Snapseed and Lightroom

Cropping is one of the standard tools and both offer that. Snapseed comes with the crop, rotate, expand, and perspective option. All are displayed separately in the tools tab. The crop tool also comes with seven built-in aspect ratios to help you choose the ideal size. Moreover, the expand tool is a unique tool which uses AI to predict the surroundings and expand the picture. The tool is not accurate all the time and can perform better on solid objects such as sky, cloud, trees etc.

Lightroom offers the crop, straighten, rotate, and flip (horizontal and vertical) in a single tool. Same as Snapseed, the crop tool offers seven built-in aspect ratios. Straighten is a unique tool which uses AI to straighten the photo. Flip is another helpful option to flip the photo horizontally or vertically.

Related: Photoshop Express vs. Lightroom | Which One is for You?


Both come with tutorials to help you learn. Snapseed comes with over 25 tutorials, while new tutorials are published regularly on the main interface of Lightroom. Each tutorial in Snapseed first explains the tools and then offers to apply those same edits to your picture. Lightroom, on the other hand, suggests the edits on the tutorial photo to help you master the app features.


Crop Options - Snapseed and Lightroom
Crop Options – Snapseed and Lightroom

The last part of Snapseed vs. Lightroom mobile is the export features. Both apps support to export the same resolution image. Snapseed saves the date, photo location and camera information, and it exports in jpeg format. Lightroom alongside date and camera info, adds tags depending on the photo. It does not save the photo location, and the exported format is jpg.

Paid nature

Lightroom mobile is not entirely free. The discussed tools in this blog post are free, while there a few tools which come with the Adobe Photography plan. The premium tools include:

  1. Selective adjustments
  2. Healing brush
  3. Fix and adjust perspective
  4. Edit ram photos
  5. Online web galleries
  6. Auto sort
  7. Auto sort people photos
  8. Apply the same adjustment to multiple photos.

Other than above, you also get cloud storage and access to other photo editing and video editing tools.

Which one to use?

Both offer many unique tools, while both are used for different goals. Snapseed is more powerful than Lightroom in text editing, brushing, editing RAW images, and adding frames, while Lightroom is more for professionals to find the perfect colours for the picture.

Lightroom comes with light, colour, effects, and detail tools. In some tools, the auto option is also available for quick editing. Other than that, Lightroom is cloud-based, and your projects can be saved online to edit on another device.

If you are looking for quick and easy ways to edit photos for basic sharing, then Snapseed will be the choice, but if your goal is specific, you already know the basics of photo editing and want to enhance your skills then Lightroom is a good place to learn.

Wrap up

Snapseed vs. Lightroom covered essential topics. I hope the information was helpful. Please let me know your thoughts in the comments down below so other readers can choose the ideal app. You can also subscribe to the newsletter for future updates.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *