Last week at Google I/O the search company unveiled a preview of the next version of Android called “L.” While the new mobile OS features a new look and plenty of features, Android Police discovered some underlying changes in the Android L Developer Documentation revealing a number of key changes including RAW image capture in Adobe’s open DNG RAW format.
What’s more the apps will allow users to manually control every aspect of an exposure including shutter speed, ISO sensitivity, exposure compensation, metering mode, focusing distance, flash tone, tone curve, color correction, and more. Supposedly the new Android release will also allow for faster capture, thanks to a “fully-synchronized processing pipeline.”
While it will be an amazing feat for every Android phone to be to produce RAW images, it might be a feature many users will be disinterested in. Not only are RAW images bigger, taking up valuable storage space, they are also almost entirely unprocessed. A large majority of smartphone photos look great because of the way these small cameras process images in-camera.
With the HTC One cameras perform with poor dynamic range where highlights go out of control. Meanwhile, the Nexus 5 had its own flaws early own with a slow shutter speed until a software update fixed it later on. These are just a few problems Android cameras already have and having unprocessed images could uncover even more flaws with these small sensors.. While RAW images will give users more wiggle room to fix photos in post, it could also mean users will have to process every image out of the camera.
Instagram has just announced version 6.0 of its mobile photo editing and sharing app, which brings a huge redesign not only in terms of looks but also (and more importantly) in terms of functionality. Following close on the heels of yesterday’s iOS 8 announcement, which also saw huge improvements to the Photos app including lots of advanced editing options, Instagram now gives its users more editing choices to tweak individual parameters of an image before sharing it.
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When EyeFi first launched the Mobi card, it seemed as if they greatly improved the service. The Mobi card was centered around transferring JPEG images to your phone quickly and easily through a two step process. If you wanted to send RAW images, you’d need to go with something else like the Eye-Fi Pro card.
Today though, the company is announcing not only a rebranding but a new service in EyeFi Cloud. The cloud is a premium service that they are pitching to those that use multiple devices. EyeFi Cloud enables someone to shoot and image, send it to their phone (or other device) which then in turn beams the images into the cloud. When the images hit the cloud, they’re accessible from your other devices such as your computer, tablet, or phone.
But we’re not sure that it’s for everyone.
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Move over Samsung–you’re not the only game in town trying to get further into the Android-powered camera world. Today Nikon introduced the Coolpix S810c, a 16MP point-and-shoot camera preloaded with the 4.2.2 version of Android Jelly Bean.
Nikon promises the camera will let users launch all their favorite Android camera apps without the compromises of a lackluster smartphone snapper. The Coolpix S810c is equipped with a 12x optical zoom Nikkor lens, albeit with an unimpressive f3.3-6.3 variable aperture. It might not produce very shallow depth of field but the Coolpix backside illuminated CMOS sensor should make up for the lack of light coming through that somewhat narrow aperture lens. Read on for more about Nikon’s new Android camera plus the new 18-300mm lens for its DX DSLRs.
More details are after the jump.
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Earlier last year, we had a peek at Adobe Lightroom Mobile behind closed doors. It was in an Alpha stage at that point but had most of the functionality that the company wanted to get out with its release today. Fast forward to last week, and we were invited to sit with Digital Imaging Product Manager Sharad Mangalick to be briefed about the new Adobe Lightroom Mobile. If you’re the type of person that does some very minor edits to their photos (as most users seem to do) then you’re in for a real treat. While the mobile version of the product isn’t as robust as its desktop brother, it still gives the user quite a bit of control over their images as well syncing with the also announced Adobe Lightroom 5.4.
At the moment, Adobe Lightroom Mobile is only available for the iPad. Sharad tells us that they’re focusing on the iOS version right now that the Android version will be done afterwards. Working with Android provides a host of problems, the least of which are the different screen sizes.
Coupled with calibration software like those from Spyder and X-Rite, Lightroom Mobile can be a great use to photographers that have a need for it. And like the full version of Photoshop vs Photoshop Elements, not everyone needs it.
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With the Galaxy S4 Zoom, Samsung introduced the first Android smartphone with an integraded point-and-shoot like zoom lens to its portfolio. Now that the Galaxy S5 has been announced, it is safe to assume that it as well will receive a ‘Zoom’ variant with a pimped-up camera feature. The S5 Zoom has indeed already been in the news lately, and now a first picture allegedly showing the device has popped up, plus some extra specs.
What we see in the picture could indeed very well be the successor to the S4 Zoom, which according to Digital Trends may not be called ‘S5 Zoom’ but rather ‘K Zoom’–for whatever reason. As is apparent from the leaked photo of the S5 Zoom, the lens has a much slimmer profile than that of the S4 Zoom. Unfortunately, the grip seems to have been removed, which means the new camera phone might not be as ergonomical as the old one.
As for the specs, the Galaxy S5 Zoom (or K Zoom) will allegedly sport a 20 megapixel sensor, a 10x optical zoom with imge stabilization, a xenon flash, a 4.8-inch 720p display, a 1.6 GHz quad-core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and run on Android 4.4.2 KitKat.
According to this Image Sensors World report, however, the ISOCELL sensor used in the S5 Zoom will only sport 16 megapixels of resolution, but on the upside include phase detection pixels for faster autofocusing. Correction: the article by Image Sensors World is on the Samsung Galaxy S5, not the S5 Zoom. We apologize for the confusion.
It is said that the device may be announced some time in May, which means we’ll have to hold out just a bit longer until we know for certain whether the picture above shows the real thing, and what its final specs will be.