This AI-powered image editor can help online vendors create unique product shots

Two photographs of the same sneaker shoe. One is the original, another is the sneaker on an AI-generated background of outdoor sports court.
PhotoRoom’s new feature has a few issues to work on, but it’s a great example of how AI-powered image generation could be practically applied for small businesses. | Image: PhotoRoom / The Verge

Photo editing app PhotoRoom has launched a new feature named Magic Studio that uses AI to personalize product shots for e-commerce vendors and small businesses.

To use the feature, which is powered by the open-source text-to-image AI Stable Diffusion, users first have to upload an image of their product. They’ll then be prompted to describe the item in a single word (bottle, sneaker, lipstick… you get the idea) and describe a desired background or setting. The feature then automatically removes the background, places the item in the newly generated setting, and sends the images via email to the user within a few minutes. Magic Studio can’t be used on shots of humans or animals.

Magic Studio’s appeal lies in its niche market. While editing features like automatic background removal and image templates are available in rival applications like Canva or Pixelcut, PhotoRoom specifically caters to online merchants. Magic Studio lets this customer base quickly create images ready to place into a selection of customizable templates presized for platforms like eBay, Shopify, and Etsy.

The Magic Studio feature is currently live for PhotoRoom Pro subscribers using the English-language version of the app. For users wanting to upgrade to access the feature, a Pro subscription will set you back $9.49 per month or $46.99 per year.

Having played around with the feature myself, it’s apparent that the AI-generated images still have a way to go, with uploaded objects sometimes appearing distorted or replaced entirely. (In the picture below, you’ll see how one of the proposed images generated by the tool inexplicably swaps out my yellow water bottle for a red substitute.)

Nine AI-generated images of a water bottle lying in patches of grass and pink flowers. Image: PhotoRoom
Images generated using a picture of a yellow Chilly’s water bottle and the prompt “lying in a patch of green grass and pink flowers.”

The feature also struggles with accurately portraying hands, though some of the creations made using Magic Studio could pass for genuine lifestyle shots at a glance. Despite these early issues, the tool is faster and far more user friendly than making similar images in software like Adobe Photoshop. For merchants with no access to a real photography studio, the feature offers a way to quickly create unique product shots entirely on a mobile device.

Tools like Magic Studio play into a larger conversation about the commercial use of AI-generated imagery: the tech is rapidly developing and has attracted criticism due to fears that powerful tools like DALL-E, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion could be used to replace real-world artists and graphic designers, in addition to concerns over copyrighted artwork being used to create generated imagery. Regardless of how these issues play out in the coming years, using AI image generation in more targeted applications like PhotoRoom’s Magic Studio could make life easier for small businesses that simply want to improve the look of their product listings.



Source: The Verge

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