Versatile Screen Capturing With Voila

Global Delight has recently announced their release of a public beta for Viola, an image capture and annotating tool for Mac.

Voila features the ability to capture a region from the screen in a variety of different shapes as well as take a full screen, timed or menu capture — significantly broader functionality than that built into OS X by default. After taking a screen capture, Voila includes annotating tools (text, arrows, callouts, sprays, stamps etc) to make editing simple and, after you’ve completed your annotation, a variety of different export options are present.

When installed for the first time, the application asks whether you’d like to use it as the default system screen capture utility, making it easy for new users to switch.

The software has a whole range of different annotation facilities, such as:

  • Arrows: Rounded, straight and double ended
  • Line: Curved, dotted, bracketed and zig-zag
  • Shape: All manner of squares, circles and squiggles
  • Brush / Spray: For freehand drawing
  • Callouts: A particularly versatile range of shapes and styles
  • Stamps: Novelty stamps, such as ‘OK’, ‘Approved’ and ‘Denied’

Mr. Rohith Bhat, CEO of Global Delight, notes that “currently, the Mac platform offers a few image capture tools, none of which have the capability to have multiple capture options along with a good blend of annotation tools. This makes Voila very unique and different from the rest of the tools out in the market.” While competition was indeed scarce a few weeks ago, Voila has been released at a very similar time to Little Snapper — a competing screen capture and annotation utility. It will be interesting to see how competition in this software area develops, as demand certainly exists for a more full-featured screen capture utility.

Voila is a great tool for those being required to create screenshots for the web, with a comprehensive range of export formats available: PNG, JPEG, TIFF, PDF, GIF and BMP. Captures can also be exported directly into an email, or sent to iPhoto for further customization.

However, the software is not without limitations (although none which seriously hinder the usefulness of the app). It isn’t possible at this stage to capture more than one monitor at a time, and the software is lacking slightly in explaining how to use the annotation tools. It’s easy to be confused as to whether a single or double click is required at times.

The beta version of Voila is available for immediate download and is free at present. Pricing information will be released when the app comes out of beta. It runs on Mac OS X 10.5.2 or later, and supports any Intel-based Mac running 1.25Ghz and above. iPhoto v6.0.1 or later is required for exporting captured or annotated images.