Google releases standalone camera app

New features up the ante with better usability, fancy blur

Remember when we said that Google was updating its camera app, possibly separate from an Android update? Well it’s happened, and the big G has just unveiled its standalone camera app. It's currently only available in certain countries though.

Criticism of the current stock Android camera app stems from opinions that it's less than intuitive when it comes to taking photos, and the new Google Camera app was created to remedy that somewhat.

It currently only works on phones and tablets running Android KitKat 4.4+, so unless you have a Nexus or newer Moto phone, you might be out of luck.

Prettier pictures, yes?

One thing you’ll notice on the new app is that the viewfinder is now 100 per cent, and it allows you to capture images in maximum resolution. For those with larger fingers, the extra large capture button sure helps, especially if you’re not into using a standalone camera button or don’t have one.

There's also an improved panorama feature to play around with, and a fun 360-degree photo sphere that used to be a Google Nexus-exclusive function. 

Of course, Google couldn't miss out everyone's favourite feature of the moment, Lens Blur, more commonly known as bokeh - which is just a fancy way of saying you're blurring the background of your shot with a shallow depth-of-field. It even allows you to change the subject in focus after you take the shot, just like on many of today's flagship phones. Eat your heart out, Instagram.

According to Google, the algorithms used to create the 3D photo run entirely on the mobile device. Interestingly, the algorithms are like those used in 3D mapping features like Google Maps, which is pretty impressive.

If you manage to get access to the US Google Play store, you can download the app here.

[Source: Google]

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