Wikimedia Commons holds millions of images and thousands of audio and video clips, created by Wikimedians or contributed from the outside through free content licenses.

Many of the high-end photographs are created with professional-level equipment and post-processing software, but it’s often said that “the best camera is the one you have with you.” And in this day and age, that usually means the mobile phone.

Wikimedia’s Mobile Apps team has been putting together Android and iOS apps for Wikimedia Commons, allowing you to take photos on the camera you always have with you and upload them to Commons either immediately or at your leisure.

  • The Android beta is available now on the Google Play store.
  • iOS betas are distributed on an opt-in invite basis; sign up here on your iPhone or iPad and you’ll be notified when the next beta is ready. (Due to Apple restrictions, you won’t be able to install betas from before you signed up.)

At this stage of development we’re mostly looking for testers who are experienced Commons users — you’ll need to sign in to the app with an existing Wikimedia account — and hoping for feedback on the workflows and on any bugs we haven’t ironed out yet.

So far we’ve had 55 unique uploaders using the apps in the last two weeks (49 on Android, 9 on iOS, and of course a little overlap!), uploading images like these:

Taken with iPhone 4S

Taken with Samsung Galaxy S3

Our goal is to hit 1000 uploaders per month once we’re in full release.

As always, these tools are completely open source — you’re all welcome to follow our progress on the project page, file bugs, or even submit patches directly on GitHub (Android, iOS).

And for those using different mobile operating systems, we haven’t abandoned you. Photo upload support is in beta on the mobile web site as well… stay tuned for more information!

Brion Vibber, Lead Software Architect, Wikimedia Foundation


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