CEF Photos, a photo history of Canada and the Great War

CEF Photos

CEF Photos is a Windows Phone reference app that delivers over 1,100 photos of the Canadian Expeditionary Force during World War I. While Great Britain and the United States often took center stage, 620,000 men and women of the CEF served during the First World War. The mostly volunteer force participated in several major battles across the European theatre and carried a strong reputation as being an effective military formation.

CEF Photos may not appeal to everyone but with the First World War passing its 100-year anniversary, the app may present a different perspective on things to history buffs.

Easy flowing gallery styled layout

CEF Photos has a nice, easy flowing gallery styled layout for the vast image library. The main pages are divided by the years the Canadian Expeditionary Forces were active in the war, spanning from 1914 to 1919.

CEF Photos Main Pages

Each page has subject matter galleries highlighting events the CEF was involved in during those years. Images galleries include pictures of troops going to war, at the front, in the trenches, on R&R and various battle scenes.

Controls are present at the bottom of the main pages to allow you to search for an image by keyword, view any images tagged as favorites and access the app's settings. Settings allow you to choose the caption color (accent or gray), how you want images to scroll and turning off animations.

CEF Photos Gallery and Page View

The galleries will display a small thumbnail of the image with a short blurb on what the picture represents. Images can be tagged as favorites, saved locally, shared with friends and you can toggle the text color.

If you want to scroll through the full image gallery, you can side swipe the full image view left or right. This is a nice touch to avoid having to go back and forth between the gallery view and image view constantly.

Overall Impression

One hundred years ago, a series of events unfolded that led to the First World War. A war that impacted the world as we had never seen before. The CEF Photos app does a nice job of delivering a part of that history to our Windows Phones.

The app is laid out nicely and it's a nice touch to be able to share and save the images. My only nit with the app is it lacks the ability to zoom into an image. Some of these images are full of detail and it would have been nice to have had this ability. The work around is to save the image locally and zoom into things through your native Pictures Hub.

If you are a history buff and looking for a Canadian angle to the First World War, CEF Photos is an app worth checking out.

  • CEF Photos - Windows Phone 8 and 7.x - Free - Store Link

QR: CEF Photos


Reader comments

CEF Photos, a photo history of Canada and the Great War


does this work fine in offline? or does it need internet connection to fully access everything in app?
downloading it now. i love history!

You need a connection to view the full size images; however, all the thumbnails are in the app (which accounts for the 16MB app size) so it's limited but not unusable off-line. 

Thanks for the review, WPCentral (and for the feedback, WPCentral readers). This was my second app and the core of it was coded in 4 hours at the Nokia DVLUP Day in Vancouver last December, though it required a couple updates to add all the content. I now have access to the Telerik control suite, so it should be easy enough to add zoom functionality to the image control. I also agree with the universal app recommendation and will work to make it available to a wider audience.