Solved – Photo File Sizes And Mobile Apps

JenT asked me whether I was up for a photo challenge, and directed me to Photography 101 from WordPress. She said she was going to do the challenge and that she was going to post from her phone.

The challenge starts in about a week from now. Sign up in the link above to take part.

Because it is a daily challenge, it seemed a good idea to post from the WP app on my phone, except for one thing.

That one thing is the dreaded subject of image size.

I am not talking about pixel size, but about file size.

To give you some background, I have been blogging on this site for several years and when I look in the Admin panel I see I have uploaded 1,104 images. Yet I have only used 3% of the allocated space.

The reason for this is that I use Save For Web And Devices in Photoshop and resize the pixel dimensions to approx 600px wide.

When I do that, Photoshop reduces the file size to around 40KB.

The reason I reduce the file size is because I have got into the habit of doing it.

I have several self-hosted websites, and it is critical to upload small file sizes that can be delivered to the web browser quickly. Failure to do that will slow a site down.

And I carry that mindset over to this WP.com site.

The fact is that WordPress.com can deliver images to the web browser very fast indeed because it has very powerful servers. So file size is not as critical.

But as some people who are new to blogging and to WordPress.com find out, uploading full-size images starts filling up your allocated space very quickly.

[You might want to read JenT’s article about what happens when you run out of space.]

So it is good practise to keep the file size – that is the KB size – down to no more than say, 40KB on average.

Which brings me back to posting from the iPhone…

Until today I had not found an image re-sizer that I liked or that did the job well.

But today after reading lots of comparisons today, I found a very good image re-sizer. It’s Reduce by Tobias Wiedermann. It’s iOS only and it available in the App Store for $1.99.

The original version of the image here as taken on my phone, is 2448 × 3264px and 1.4 MB. The ‘reduced’ image you can see here is 500 × 667px and 37 KB.

reduce-IMG_8320

As you can see, this file size is perfectly adequate for viewing on the web.

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25 thoughts on “Solved – Photo File Sizes And Mobile Apps

  1. More really useful info, thanks David. I have recently started resizing some of my photos because of this very issue. I export them from iPhoto and save them on a separate folder. This allows me to substantially reduce the size but not as low as 40Kb. And it’s not an option from my phone so your suggestions are very helpful – thank-you. I’m thinking about the photography 101 challenge – in fact have recommended it to my son. Myself, I’m busy with Blogging 201 at the moment so haven’t decided yet – may have to take a rain check until WP run it again next year.

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    1. Thank you for the feedback, Jill. I didn’t think about what other people might use on a desktop machine to reduce file sizes. I’ll dig around to find out what the options are for people who don’t have Photoshop.

      I have iPhoto, but I almost never use it. Maybe these settings will help you – I just exported a 10 MB photo using these settings [ https://cloudup.com/ciBczPMQZ7P ] and the exported file is less than 40 KB.

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  2. Your header is also missing for me. Sometimes it shows up, but mostly I get the enormous broken image icon like Rebekah.

    Thanks for linking to my post. I’m on an Android phone and am trying to use Snapseed (not made for aging eyes) for image editing. We shall see how that goes. I’m going to be getting an earlier than I thought opportunity to try posting more from my phone. Stay tuned. 🙂

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    1. Thanks for the head-up. I’ve raised it with Support. I’ve got another issue as well, that I’ve raised with Support, which is that in the mobile WordPress app, the names of my sites are listed in duplicate. When I click on the admin of one, I see a partially up-to-date list of posts. When I click on the other, I see the up-to-date list. When I click through to the site in either of the admin panels, I see the up-to-date site.

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  3. I haven’t ever uploaded a post from my phone, but I do reduce the size of all the photos before posting on the computer as well. I use Picmonkey for this. I usually go for about 100 kb but after seeing your picture maybe I could go even smaller. I’ll give it a go.

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      1. Hmmm, interesting. I did one 99KB and the same photo at 40KB and it was teeny and very pixelated. Maybe I should try a different method. Even with all my images at around 100KB I haven’t used much space so far. I need to go back and edit my first posts which I did before I knew about decreasing the size of images.

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  4. I’m going to ask what seems like a very stupid question – what’s the difference between file size and pixel size or number? I use the WP app on my android phone to upload and post photos on posts and I use the built in image resizer in the app to reduce the size. I thought what I’m doing is also reducing the file size? Thanks for the post.

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  5. Pingback: Uploading Images – Pixels And File Sizes | Photograph Works

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