Are your photos garbage? Canon can delete them for you

Canon Photo Culling PHIL
(Image credit: Canon)

If your hit rate on shots isn't the best, you probably end up with a lot of images not worth keeping. Luckily for you, Canon's Photo Culling app has now arrived on Apple iOS devices to automatically detect and delete the duffers for you.

• Read more: Best photo apps 

At the heart of the Canon Photo Culling app is PHIL – Photography Intelligence Learning – an artificial intelligence engine that critiques and grades your photos. According to Canon, judgmental old uncle PHIL "is used to detect the photo score using AI technology, to show how good or bad the quality of your photos are."

PHIL uses five models to judge your images: grouping with similar photos, noise, sharpness, emotion and closed eyes. You can set your own threshold for each of these areas so, for example, you can decide how much of a smile you want in your shots (smiling being PHIL's barometer for your subject's happiness or sadness), whether or not closed eyes are a deal-breaker, or how much sharpness or noise you are happy with. 

Photo Culling can then organize your images according to your preferences "in minutes", assigning scores to your shots to prioritize the best shots according to criteria and deleting duplicate or unwanted shots, saving you both time and storage space on your device. 

It's Canon's latest endeavor with artificial intelligence, following the integration of Deep Learning AF in the Canon EOS-1D X Mark III, Canon EOS R5 and Canon EOS R6

While the process is based on a lot of automation, you maintain control over the whole thing – not only by virtue of the criteria you set, but also by selecting the photos your want to cull and choosing from two options: Similar Culling (which determines the best shots based on your criteria thresholds) and Whole Culling (based on a score comparison among a similar group of images).

The app can also keep tally of how many photos and how much storage you have, as well as create and curate dynamic albums. 

Already available as a Lightroom plug-in for the Adobe Exchange App Marketplace,  the Photo Culling app is currently only available on Apple devices in the US (requiring the latest iOS) where it costs either $2.99 per month or $14.99 USD a year.

Read more: 

Best photo editing software
Best camera phones
Best Canon cameras
What is Deep Learning? 

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James Artaius

The editor of Digital Camera World, James has 21 years experience as a journalist and started working in the photographic industry in 2014 (as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy, who succeeded David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus). In this time he shot for clients like Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus, and providing training for professionals. This has led him to being a go-to expert for camera and lens reviews, photo and lighting tutorials, as well as industry news, rumors and analysis for publications like Digital Camera MagazinePhotoPlus: The Canon MagazineN-Photo: The Nikon MagazineDigital Photographer and Professional Imagemaker, as well as hosting workshops and talks at The Photography Show. He also serves as a judge for the Red Bull Illume Photo Contest. An Olympus and Canon shooter, he has a wealth of knowledge on cameras of all makes – and a fondness for vintage lenses and instant cameras.