Development of digital photography and night mode improvement
Development of mobile photography quickly led manufacturers to face an obstacle that is challenging for all cameras in barely lit environments or in the dark. For smartphone manufacturing giants this was a new way to compete and finding a solution that improves picture quality taking photo in these conditions meant to have a new opportunity to attract more users. Huawei and Google took their first attempts to render quality photos.
New “Huawei P20 Pro” and “Google Pixel 3” models were unveiled in early 2018. The P20 Pro had a neuronal processing engine. Combining image capture technology with 40MP resolution, P20 Pro was better than any other smartphone at capturing stunning shots in low light conditions. He took a few shots in about four seconds, then used a neural processing engine to neutralize any moving frame effects at the same time using a longer shutter speed feature to capture more light into the image.
At a time when any other mobile camera was blind at night without even a thought to be pulled out of your pocket, P20 Pro innovative feature was great for capturing an image that was invisible even to the naked eye.
Google didn’t allow to rejoice such an advantage for successful Huawei flagship and later that year introduced “Pixel 3” to the world, a strong competitor in “Night Sight” shooting mode.
“Night Sight” feature worked similarly to Huawei’s flagship night mode, capturing multiple shots and stitching them together. Besides the new Google flagship used refined Pixel 2 HDR+ technology. The difference was that Google didn’t choose a 40MP resolution camera and instead took advantage of the camera’s lower resolution using 12.2 MP pixels, which could capture the same number of frames in less time.
This allowed Pixel 3 to take equally sharp and detailed photos at night, almost as fast as during the day. Google even took advantage of the natural handshake effect to extrapolate more data to “Night Sight”. This principle actually confuses the lens OIS module to intentionally create some movement and capture more light for each frame when shooting in “Night Sight” mode.
To this day, smartphones still can’t match the image quality as expensive cameras and don’t have shooting versatility for different environments, but the image processing technologies already used in mobile photography are helping a lot to greatly reduce that difference.
Google Pixel 3
Pixel 3 had a big change in aluminum case design compared to its previous generations. The overall housing was rounder and more comfortable to hold than the earlier Pixel 2 model and the glass body finally allowed wireless charging support.
Front view of the phone looked a lot more modern than its predecessor simply because of the better body to screen ratio. It was clear that manufacturer also paid attention to the tons of complaints about the Pixel 2 and 2 XL’s screen quality, so the new flagman was equipped with an incomparably better screen that no longer had previously mentioned problems.
Of course, the Pixel 3 also came with aforementioned “Night Sight” camera feature including 40% faster HDR+ processing. On top of that, smartphone has been enhanced with “Super Res Zoom”, which uses frame position differences matching data when even a slight hand shake can manually enhance image quality. Isn’t that amazing?
The Google Duplex project makes direct calls pointless
Google shook audiences in 2018 May when demonstrate its new artificial intelligence project called “Duplex”. At the conference Google CEO Sundar Pichai took his smartphone on stage, called the local hairdresser then allowed Google Assistant to take over the conversation and arrange a visit.
It was a really stunning presentation. Google Assistant was able to speak naturally on behalf of the caller and understand talker’s answers. Before asking questions, artificial intelligence moments of silence filled with expressions of thought, such as “hmm” or “aaa” by creating a real person impression.
This invention seemed convincing, as “Duplex” arranged a visit when Pichai later did not say a word over the phone. When call ended, Google Assistant message appeared on his phone confirming the appointment and even adding a reminder to his calendar. This seemed as one of the biggest steps in the world of mobile technology.
Although Duplex was initially available only to Pixel owners, it was later installed on all devices running Android 5.0 or later. Some of the biggest competitors like iPhone, which runs Google search app, have also received this impressive functionality update.