Planet Google

Heartbroken That Google Killed Picnik? Hometown Favorite Aviary Wants to Help

picnik2 Heartbroken That Google Killed Picnik? Hometown Favorite Aviary Wants to Help

On Friday, Google issued a sad announcement for those of us (harried bloggers included) with copious amounts of photos to resize and crop and subpar editing skills. As part of the company’s renewed focus under Larry Page, Google revealed that it would be shuttering Picnik, the online photo editor that Google acquired in 2010.

“We’re retiring the service on April 19, 2012 so the Picnik team can continue creating photo-editing magic across Google products. You can download a zip file of your creations through Picnik Takeout or copy them to Google+. As of now, the premium service is free to everyone. Premium members will receive a full refund in the coming weeks.”

In a recent interview with Alex Taub about version two of Aviary’s photo editing API, he mentioned Picnik as not much of a competitor. After Google purchased the startup, Picnik neglected to update its features and, in the age of smartphones, failed to release a mobile version of its editing suite.

But that doesn’t mean Aviary isn’t happy to jump in with a helping hand. “We’re here to tell you that we hear you, we understand your pain, and we promise that you won’t have to give up the convenience of editing your photos online,” Aviary wrote in a post on the company’s blog yesterday. So thoughtful, guys!

To that end, there is Aviary’s freshly-launched photo editor for Facebook, an app that lets you use its tools without leaving the page. Although the company’s emphasis is now on mobile, tools for web browsers still exist too.

“We know that your very first question is going to be how this experience will compare to Picnik. The short answer is that we already offer most of the features you know and love. The slightly longer answer is that we’re releasing updates all the time – with performance improvements, fancy new tools, and tons of effects and stickers – and that we’d love to hear from you what else we can do to help.”

How about helping us pen a strongly-worded No Thank You card to Google for killing Picnik? Can anyone at Aviary help with that?

Follow Nitasha Tiku on Twitter or via RSS. ntiku@observer.com