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Picasa for fanboys arrives

Google dishes up free photo-editing tool to Mac faithful

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Google has finally released a version of its Picasa software for the Apple Mac.

The internet giant said yesterday that a public beta of the free photo editing tool was now available for download via Google Labs.

Of course, the firm also wanted to score big ink by ensuring the announcement coincided with the Macworld Expo, which is about to get sleepily underway in San Francisco minus a sickly Steve Jobs.

Fanboys interested in the beta need to be running Intel-based Mac OS X 10.4, said Google’s software engineer Susanna Leng.

Google previously offered both a standalone Picasa Web Albums uploader and an iPhoto plugin for Mactards, but the software itself could only be run on Windows XP, Vista and Linux-based PCs.

However, Picasa 3 for the Mac comes without several features that are available in the Windows version including Geotag, integrated webcam capture, auto screen capture and the export as an HTML page option.

Presumably, Google will put this straight once the software is out of beta, right? Perhaps, but the firm is notorious for keeping its free services at the unvarnished stage for a very, very long time.

So fanboys and gals could be in for yet another long wait. Or they can always just carry on using Apple's own photo editing tool - iPhoto - which comes bundled on all Macs. ®

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