Locationscout review
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Locationscout Review

I’ve been looking for a photo sharing app to replace instagram in my life for a while now. When I say replace instagram, I mean that I have an account I rarely use because it’s rubbish at displaying images and I’m not interested in influencer spam or playing games with an algorithm to get my own images seen. I’ve discovered a different kind of app and I think it might be the answer. This review of Locationscout explains why.

First off, Locationscout is not an instagram replacement, It offers a lot more than instagram in terms of creative investment and connection and in so doing encourages a community with a vested interest in sharing photo locations. No gatekeeping, no “like harvesting”, follower counts or influencer nonsense.

Let me explain.

I get a lot of pleasure from photographing landscapes; in Andalucia, and Western Europe mostly. I love the process of taking pictures and editing them, it’s the closest thing to meditation in my life and of course I’d like people to see them. I also mentor other photographers and so it’s completely logical that I would share the location of a photograph. Win win.

Locationscout works on two levels. It provides me with a means of encouraging other photographers to visit some of my favourite locations without it being all about me. I know, I have a small YouTube channel but that’s work, this is pleasure.

Secondly it gives me a chance to discover locations that I am not familiar with. A Locationscout premium account allows me to search for “spots” near me and provides directions to those spots. As the app grows, this will become an invaluable resource since the equivalent currently is to search Flickr for locations and try to work out where the photo was taken from using google maps. Time consuming but rewarding.

Locationscout App

So this is how it works.

There is a website through which you can upload photos and create new “spots”. There is an app, available for iOS and Android which features sections entitled Explore, Feed, Around Me (Premium), add Bookmarks and access and edit your Profile. Let’s take a look at these areas of the app.

Explore

Locationscout explore

Search by categories including Beautiful Locations, Popular Countries and Inspiration For You

Click on a Photograph in any of these categories and you’ll drill down to the details.

Locationscout details

You can “heart” the image, bookmark the image for later, or get the navigation details immediately. The navigation details push the location through to Apple Maps where I can get directions for driving, walking etc. The app offers a choice of Apple Maps, Google Maps and Waze.

The app offers a description of the photo, precise location Lat/Long, a generalised location, a crowd factor rating. Scroll down to find the Photographer’s tips, travel information, a 7 day weather forecast and a map. Depending how much information the photographer puts in, the map indicates the location of the camera, the location of the subject, Sunrise direction and current position of sun. I have an iPhone and I see Apple Maps.

Note that for rural locations, the navigation will take you to the nearest road, so where the photograph was taken several miles away from the road, it’s wise to enlarge the map and see if you can see a path or track.

Feed

The Feed offers a choice of New pictures and Popular Pictures, so hours of scrolling fun if it’s inclement outside!

Locationscout feed

Clicking on any image will take you through to the details.

Around Me (Premium)

This is the differentiator. No ads and a map that can be adjusted to 10, 25, 50 ,100 or even 250km around my current position.

It doesn’t have to be around my current position, I can make a custom position by dropping a pin on the map and choosing the radius of the search.

Locationscout custom location

I can then click on any one of the camera icons to see a map overlay showing me a picture taken from the spot, a description of the type of shot – outdoor, drone, an estimate of how far away it is from my. current position and the ability to go to details or bookmark it for later.

Locationscout custom location map overlay

Bookmarks

Locationscout Bookmark Board

Bookmarks can be arranged into collections called Boards, so this is a great way of adding a location to a future trip. The picture shows a board I created from images other photographers have shot in Granada. The spots can be viewed with images or on a map.

Profile

Locationscout profile

Exclusive Offer

The App and the Webapp are free and I would strongly encourage you to try it out for yourself. It’s a relative newcomer to the scene but has nearly quarter of a million images and 141k users. It will only get better as more people use it.

I’ve tried literally dozens of photo apps, from Vero to Glass and including Flickr, 500px, Threads, Twitter and on and on and on. I’ve concluded that I don’t much like social media, finding the content often fails to connect and the algorithmic tweaking frustrating, it uses up time like a vampire and is in my opinion simply not worth the investment of time and effort. Locationscout is different. The idea of location sharing is a masterstroke, differentiating the app from all its competitors at a stroke. Where Instagram is about collecting likes, Locationscout is about sharing, where 500px is about gaming the algorithm Locationscout is about community and enabling. Locationscout connects where other apps plunge their users into a ghastly rivalry.

I’ve used the app for less than a week, planned four days worth of photography next week in and around Vejer la Frontera and found some locations near me that I didn’t know existed. I paid for an upgrade to Premium and was so impressed I wrote to the developer to tell him!

Two days and three photos later I can offer an exclusive discount code to readers of this blog and subscribers on YouTube.

If you want to sign up for a Premium account, either straight away or after you’ve tried the free version, go to

https://www.locationscout.net/premium and enter the code CHRISW – this will get you 20% off your first year’s subscription. Be sure to go via the website as the app is not set up to accept coupon codes.

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