My camera roll is a polluted ocean. For one, it’s a deep abyss full of too much garbage—accidental screenshots of my alarm clock when I mean to hit snooze, one too many selfies of sunburns and a heap of unsolicited Air Drop bombs from bored strangers on long-haul bus rides.
But deep in the rolling tides of my photo albums are also some hidden gems—the precious pearls and brilliant corals and iridescent seashells that are my cherished memories.
I typically save these photos in my Favorites album so I can find them without doing too much digging through years of travel.
It’s the album I whip out when I meet a new friend in a hostel discussing our shared experience running from rogue monkeys in Ubud, Bali. And it’s the album I open up when my friends back home refuse to believe that I really did eat a scorpion that one time in Cambodia and went scuba diving with menacing, toothy eels in Honduras.
But even my Favorites album is a disorderly muddle of photos from years of traveling all over the world. The last 10 items in that album make just about zero sense:
A blurry photo of me dancing with a mosh of strangers at Nos Alive music festival in Lisbon, Portugal.
A screenshot of my license that was in my stolen wallet in Barcelona.
A portrait of me sitting on a sailboat on Lake Titicaca in Bolivia.
An action shot of me sand-boarding down the dunes at sunset in Huacachina, Peru.
An exciting sighting of a blue-footed booby in the Galápagos.
An incredibly awkward photo of me nervously feeding a llama in the middle of the world along Ecuador’s equator.
An admittedly deceptive shot of me surfing in Costa Rica.
A favorite snap summiting Volcán Acatenango in Guatemala.
A selfie showing off my totally phallic-shaped henna tattoo in Udaipur, India.
An aerial view of Cappadocia, Turkey’s fairy chimneys from a hot air balloon.
What I need to better organize my travel memories is an app that can do it all for me.
Mylio is the free photo organizer every traveler needs. It works for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android, and it manages all of your photos and files from all of your devices and online services like Facebook and Flickr.
It’s more than just an organizational tool, however. The app boasts a number of impressive features that help me to organize, edit and access my safely stored photos.
1. Organize Your Photos in Various Ways
I’m the kind of person who remembers my life in terms of countries perhaps more than dates. You’ll often hear me saying something along the lines of, “The last time I got a vaccine was Thailand,” instead of “The last time I got a vaccine was in January.” Or, “I haven’t talked to that friend since Colombia, so maybe I should reach out,” instead of “I haven’t talked to that friend in six months, so maybe I should reach out.”
Since I started traveling full time, my brain just operates in country-chunked memories rather than chronological time. As such, being able to organize my photos on a map makes it a lot easier to find specific ones.
Mylio’s map is intuitive and elegant; photos are grouped by location with a pin that shows how many photos were taken in each place. You can zoom into the map using pinch-in and pinch-out on touchscreens or use the plus and minus signs in the bottom right corner of the map. As you zoom in, Mylio separates your photos into more defined pins, allowing you to better see where each set of photos was taken.
You can also utilize Mylio’s search from within Map view to find a specific location. For instance, you can type “Bermuda” in Mylio’s search bar to automatically be taken to the island of Bermuda and shown the photos taken there.
Of course, in Mylio, you can also organize your photos by date, so if you do think in terms of months or years, you’ll be able to go back to specific times and find your photos.
Likewise, Mylio allows you to organize by faces/people, folders/events and tags/flags/stars. When you want to see all your photos of a friend or family member, simply type in that person’s name, and Mylio will show a custom album of that person.
You also have the option of organizing photos into folders or events, which is another way Mylio makes it easy to find a particular photo.
And of course you can use the search filter to find specific photos, as well. Overall, if you’ve ever felt like you’re drowning in photos, Mylio is a ready-made and free lifesaver!
Another huge Mylio bonus is that migration is seamless. If you’ve spent a fair chunk of time organizing your photos, the thought of moving to a new photo management system can be daunting. Luckily, Mylio migrates not only your photos but also the folder structure you have them in. That way, all the sorting you’ve already done comes with you!
2. Edit Your Travel Photos without Being a Professional Content Creator
Mylio makes any traveler look like a content creator. And if you want to show off the best of your travels, you know the importance of editing photos before uploading or sharing. Using Mylio’s editing tools, you can crop, rotate and straighten your photos to highlight what matters.
And what’s more, the edits you make to a photo on one device are automatically made on all your other devices! So if you crop a photo on your phone, the same crop will already have been made when you next get on your tablet or computer.
You can also apply and/or change presets, as well as use editing controls. You can even batch edit multiple photos at once to give them some uniformity. The tools range from one-tap filters to precision treatment sliders.
Mylio also makes rating a fun and fast process with its auto-advance feature, which automatically moves on to the next picture after you rate each photo so you can rate as efficiently as possible!
And, if you ever need a specific tool that Mylio doesn’t offer, you can send your images to another editor to make those changes for you. And once they’re saved back to Mylio, Mylio will automatically pick up those edits and sync them between all of your devices.
As you’re probably starting to see, Mylio makes photo management easy across multiple platforms and devices.
3. Access Your Photos Any Time, Anywhere
As a traveler, I’m busy wiping out on electric scooters down cobblestoned alleyways and navigating rivers snaking through jungles by canoe. I spend my time living in the moment, and seldom have time to be editing photos from my past.
That said, I’ve been on enough long-haul buses and overnight trains to know that the WiFi never works like it’s advertised. And when I’m not journaling during those journeys, it’s an ideal time for me to catch up on editing photos. Except that too many of my photos are stuck in the cloud, and I usually need WiFi to access and sync them.
With Mylio, you can access and sync your photos any time, anywhere. Unlike cloud-based services, all your pictures are on all your machines, so they are always with you. You can view them on any device, with or without internet. That means you can efficiently use your travel time and make the most of your adventure time!
In the background, Mylio’s smart software frees up space on your phone by distributing your photo originals across your devices (like laptops and tablets) that have more storage space.
4. Rest Assured That Your Photos are Safe
Mylio is not a cloud service. Rather, Mylio utilizes the storage on the devices that you already own to keep copies of your files. You can also designate a device with a lot of storage space as a Vault; a Vault (ideally a computer or external drive) will automatically store your original, full-sized files so you can free up even more space on your smaller devices.
For added protection, Mylio can also integrate with some cloud providers to use their storage as Vaults, too. This ensures an offsite copy of your files that you can use to restore your library in case something happens to one of your travel devices.
If you do indeed choose to use the cloud as an added layer of protection, you can encrypt your images. This will ensure that your data is not available to anyone with unauthorized access to your cloud service.
So whether you’re planning to island hop around Laos’ 4,000 Islands or taking a food tour across Italy, Mylio is there to help you at every stage of your photo journey. And you can rest assured that you’ll be able to easily edit, organize, and share those cannoli pics like a seasoned foodie.