User Friendliness & Interface Customizability- GIMP is the only photo editing software that allows total customization of its interface so a beginner can have a very simple interface with only the most basic photo editing features while advanced users can customize the interface to replicate the advanced but cluttered and confusing interface of Photoshop.
Multiplatform Support- One of the best feature of GIMP is that it is a multi-platform application which means that if you own several machines running different Operating Systems, they can all have an installation of GIMP and you will not have trouble at all with application portability. Currently, GIMP supports all major operating systems such as Windows, OS X and Linux.
100% Free with Free Lifetime Updates- GIMP is released under the GNU General Public License as free software which means that the application is completely free to use, distribute and modify. Updates are also available regularly by the highly active development team for free.
Powerful yet Tiny Application Footprint- While most graphic editing software tend to be bloated and large, taking up and hogging huge resources of your PC when running, GIMP is extremely small in footprint and resource usage. A complete installation of GIMP takes roughly 25MB of disk space compared to about 500MB of a typical Photoshop installation. Resource usage are also minimal so your old laptop that is lying around that can never dream of running Photoshop can probably run GIMP smoothly. On top of that, GIMP even has a portable version where you can install the application in a USB drive and you will be able to run the application even when you are not on your own desktop or laptop.
Powerful Photo Editing Features- GIMP supports all the common tools used in photo editing such as the paint brush, pencil, airbrush, eraser and ink tools. Blending images are supported via the bucket fill tool and the blend tool. Smart tools that are supported by GIMP are the clone tool, healing brush tool, perspective clone tool, blur tool and the sharpen tool. Dodge and burn from traditional dark room editing are also supported. Finally GIMP also support a complete list of transform tool such as align, move, crop, scale, shear, rotate, perspective and flip.
Universal File Format Support- GIMP supports all major graphical file formats such as the JPG, BMP,
TIFF, PNG and GIF as well as native Photoshop files, PSD. GIMP is compatible with all your files saved in native Photoshop format so you can open and edit them even after you made the change to GIMP.
GIMP is definitely an essential tool for anyone who needs a photo editing software who doesn’t want to or doesn’t need the super advanced feature set of Photoshop. Everything that you need to do to edit a photo can probably be done on GIMP unless you are a professional graphic artist. Even then, there are many plug-ins and scripts for GIMP that may make you want to consider the switch to GIMP.