Last Updated on 01/10/2018 by Mark Beckenbach
The new photo apps are part of Google’s “appsperiments.”
In case you missed it, Google launched three photography apps in early December 2017 as part of its “appsperiments” program: Storyboard (Android), Selfissimo! (iOS and Android), and Scrubbies (iOS). Given the improving photo and video capabilities of smartphone cameras, Google wanted to explore their potential through “usable and useful mobile photography experiences built on experimental technology.”
Google’s “appsmerimental” approach was partly inspired by the Motion Stills app, which was also developed by their researchers. It converts short videos into cinemagraphs and time lapses through experimental stabilization technologies. The “appsperiments” follow an initiative of “building on other technologies in development at Google” to create fun apps that run on “object recognition, person segmentation, stylization algorithms, efficient image encoding and decoding technologies.”
If Kirakira+ or similar apps aren’t particularly useful for your mobile photography, maybe you’ll be more keen to play around with Google’s “appsperiments” this year:
This Android-only app automatically chooses six frames from your videos and turns them into single-page comic book style layouts in one out of six visual styles. Not happy with the app’s choices? You can refresh the app until you get your desired frames and layouts. Google says there are about 1.6 trillion possibilities, so it might take a while! Not exactly sure how the resulting storyboard spread will be useful, but it looks fun to play around with.
Here’s something for all selfie fans out there. Selfissimo! automatically takes black and white photos in photobooth style each time you strike a pose. Interestingly, it only takes a shot whenever you stop moving (or your phone stops moving), so there are no blurs or awkward shots. After ending the session by tapping on the screen, you can review the resulting contact sheet to save individual shots or the entire shoot.
Want to get experimental with your videos for Instagram? Here’s an iOS-only app that lets you create fun video remixes like a DJ. Simply shoot a video using Scrubbies and scratch it with one finger back and forth to plan your remix. Do it again with two fingers and to capture and save your remix into a video loop.