When Google released Android Lollipop, one of the benefits was the virtual explosion of new APIs that app developers could tap into to bring new features to users. One of those new APIs is for the camera functions and provides the ability to tap into manual controls for camera hardware that supports the new options. This means Android photographers can get a little bit closer to having their smartphone replicate the features and capabilities of a more traditional DSLR. A new app from GD Software, Manual Camera, is the first one to hit Google Play that appears to take full advantage of the new API and available controls.
The controls that can be tapped into with the new Manual Camera app include shutter speed, focus distance, ISO, white balance, and exposure compensation. The app also supports saving images to the RAW (DNG) format, geo tagging via a smartphone’s GPS information, a timer, gridlines, turning sounds on or off, and adjusting maximum screen brightness. According to the developers, everything about the app also works extremely fast. Checking out some of the screen shots provided below shows GD Software definitely put some effort into producing an app with a nice interface that should be easy to use.
If there is any downside to the Manual Camera app, it is that it requires Android Lollipop to run, which means most of use will continue to wait for our devices to be updated before we can turn our smartphone cameras into something more than a basic point and click camera. If you do have an Android Lollipop powered device, Manual Camera costs $1.99 and is available in Google Play using the links below.