A new photo-sharing software application for iPhones and Android devices is raising a lot of eyebrows. Dubbed Color, the app allows users to instantly share photos and videos with other phones running Color within 150 feet of each other. The app can automatically detect when another phone is running Color and starts the photo sharing automatically – even if you don’t know, or don’t particularly like, the other phone owner. (PC Mag’s Jeffrey Wilson describes using it as “exiciting” and “a bit frightening.”)
If someone in your range is snapping photos you’re not particularly interested in seeing, you can hide them using them app, but it really does beg the question of what the point of the endeavor is. There are several apps now that let people create collaborative streams of photos so that multiple people at the same event can create a real-time pool of images (check out Photofeed and LiveShare. But that’s an experience that you willingly sign up for and even if you don’t know every last participant, it’s still a somewhat controlled environment. Color has no such discrimination – if someone has the app running, they can see your photos (not every photo on your phone, though, just the ones you’ve taken with the color app on). It’s voyeuristic, sure, but not much more than that.
Color is a free app for both the iPhone and Android smartphones.