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Mockup of an app on a mobile device
Mockup of an app on a mobile device

Your photos, made effortless

How we helped Amazon rethink family photos
Design, Interaction and Development
iOS and Android
UI, UX and Strategy
Photos are among our most treasured personal objects. If the house caught fire, many of us would grab that dusty old photo album as we fled the burning building.

The Brief

When a hard drive sizzles or a smartphone takes a dip in the ocean, it’s the lost photos we mourn. Lives, histories, and potent memories live on in photographs.

Amazon knew their customers used Cloud Drive primarily for photo storage, but the application wasn’t built to support optimal photo storage, viewing, organizing, editing, or sharing.

At the same time, there was a wide market gap. No other competitor offered a product that automates the photo lifecycle for families. The opportunity was clear—and MetaLab has been Amazon’s strategic partner to create the future of photo storage and management.
Wireframes amazon photos app and website
Finished website and app on a laptop and a mobile phone

Removing photo friction

After a series of discussions with Cloud Drive users, our design and product team learned that people want more photo storage. Lots more. They constantly run out of space on their smartphones—and they worry about losing important visual memories. Few people know how (or have the energy) to make the most of their huge photo libraries.

Precious memories are left, neglected in a disorganized mass, vulnerable to technical meltdowns. Not an ideal scenario.
Three mobile devices showing different screens from the Amazon Photos app
Screenshot from the Amazon Photos website
Our research reinforced the emotional value of photos among families, but anything beyond clicking that digital shutter demands time, effort, and technical expertise. It’s confusing and boring. We created Amazon Photos to strip away the effort.

Once you take a photo, it’s automatically backed up to a secure, cloud-based server. The application edits the image, sends a copy to specific friends or family members (based on learned preferences).
If you want an album printed, you can order and ship it in minutes.
It’s an end-to-end experience that automates discovery, organization, and photo sharing for busy families.
Mobile device showing an album of a baby on the amazon photos app, placed on a physical photo album of the baby

A smarter photo experience

Amazon Photos is engaging and wildly easy to use. We worked hard on the design, but some of our best thinking happened in the earliest stages. Together with our client, we broke down the photo lifecycle and examined every detail that could be automated.

That deep understanding of the “capture, review, edit, share, store, and publish” cycle informed every decision—from providing batch-editing features to multiple family sharing options.
Screenshot from the amazon photos app


Family members take photos on separate devices, but they want an easier way to share and view them (often together). It’s easy to miss great photos in a bulging digital library, too.

With Amazon Photos, you can invite up to five people to your Family Photos.

Search, share and view everyone’s photos in the same, secure location. Invite multiple contributors to a central album.

Ready to outshine the competition

We’ve partnered with Amazon to develop a multi-year roadmap of family-focused features and create a product that out-performs any other individualized photo service.

We’re excited to see it grow and evolve. But most importantly, Amazon Photos redefines how families experience their photos, while allowing them to rediscover their memories in more meaningful ways. After all, isn’t that the whole point of our daily snapshots?