In short: More details on a number of the camera features said to be included with the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones have now been revealed. The Information comes from a new report out of 9to5Google, and provides insight on “Top Shot,” “Photobooth,” “Super res zoom,” and more.
Background: The Pixel 3 and 3 XL have leaked massively over the past few months, and as a result the bulk of the hardware changes and design are very clearly understood. The same cannot be said for the software, however, and this is likely by design with Google looking to ensure the ultimate selling points of the two new phones are kept under wraps until the big reveal. When it comes to the software, the camera features in particular are expected to be a big thing and it seems a number of new features are now expected to be announced during the event. Some of these, such as “Top Shot” were previously known, although this latest information paints a slightly better picture of what users can expect. For example, Top Shot will seemingly work in a similar way to how Motion Photos work on the Pixel phone line, where a number of images are taken before and after the main photo is captured. The difference being Top Shot will draw on AI as a means to identify and select the images the AI deems to be the best. This is also while reducing the demand on storage by reducing the quality of select parts of images while maintaining the quality of the image’s focus. In contrast, Photobooth is exactly as it sounds, a feature designed to improve the quality of selfies taken with the dual camera setup. The report suggests this feature will work in a similar way to how Google Clips operates by waiting and taking a selfie when the AI identities the right time to take the picture. Although it’s understood multiple options will be captured and available for the user to choose from.
Impact: The information in this latest report clearly indicates one of the driving forces behind the Pixel 3 and 3 XL camera experience will be AI. With Google literally incorporating artificial intelligence in as many areas of the camera process as it can. For example, in addition to Top Shot and Photobooth, the report also highlights “Super res zoom,” which is another feature that is likely to draw on AI. This is all without taking into account other additional features that will be on offer, and which may or may not draw on AI, including subject tracking during auto focus and wide angle selfies. All of which the company is hoping will come together to offer a premium camera experience, and regardless of whether the front or rear camera setups are used.