The iPhone 5 has one of the best cameras you’ll find on a smartphone, but Apple could be looking to make it even better for the iPhone 5S. According to the latest rumor surrounding the next iPhone, we can expect a 12-megapixel camera with improved low-light shooting, and HDR video recording.
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Yeah yeah, Vine is all the rage right now. But remember Socialcam, the share-heavy iOS video app from effects-wizard Autodesk? If you don’t, here’s a reminder that the app is a sharp tool for shooting and sharing quick vids on Facebook — and it’s just been spiced up with HDR, new filters and the ability to shoot in 720p.
No, it’s not Egon. HDR Express, the enthusiast-level high dynamic range Mac app from Unified Color Technologies, is now out in a new version with improved de-ghosting algorithms for images with moving subjects, among a handful of other interesting new features.
One of the coolest parts of digital photography is being able to use software to make your photos better than you could ever had imagined. I’m not just talking about fixing exposures or adding special effects—both of those things are very cool—I’m talking about things like HDR photography.
HDR (High Dynamic Range) is entails taking several images (one correctly exposed and several over and under exposed) and combining them into a new image that make the picture much more like how we see the world. And how is this done? Software. Software like Hydra Pro
Have you ever wondered how Apple gets such beautifully clean, crisp product shots for its various devices? Are they real photos at all? Or are they just computer-generated images? The truth is somewhere in between, and shows that Apple’s obsessive attention to detail carries over to everything.
My colleagues here at Cult of Mac, PR reps completely unrelated to Fuji or anything photographic, random showgoers whose snippets of conversation I intercepted — everyone seemed to be talking about it. Even the very air at CES seemed to be pulsating with the word “Fuji.” Of course, they were all talking about the enigmatic, neo-retro Fuji X-Pro1.
One of the reasons owners of the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS have been waiting for a jailbreak for iOS 4.1 is to enable the iPhone 4’s impressive HDR functionality on their older handsets… a hack which is already available for jailbroken 3G and 3GS users on the iOS 4.1 beta through a Cydia app.
It looks pretty likely, though, that these users won’t need to jailbreak their devices to enable HDR functionality… Apple seemingly intends to add HDR in a software update coming down the line.
HDR Camera Enabler for iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G Now Available On Cydia For Jailbroken iOS 4.1 Beta Only
It turns out we didn’t need to wait for the Dev Team to jailbreak iOS 4.1 after all: if you’ve got a jailbroken iPhone 3G or 3GS running the iOS 4.1 beta, all you need to do is download the HDR Camera Enabler through Cydia from the ModMy repository to enable high dynamic range snaps on your last-gen iPhone.
Presumably, this same tweak will also work with the Dev Team’s official iOS 4.1 jailbreak, which has yet to be released. Unfortunately, for right now, it’s 4.1 beta only, though, making it available to only a very small subset of jailbreakers. If you want to give it a shot, though, Redmondpie has a series of good tutorials on how to jailbreak the iOS 4.1 beta on the iPhone 3GS or iPhone 3G.
iOS 4.1’s ability to take high-dynamic range photos has been a much buzzed about new feature particularly to amateur photogs looking to maximize the quality of their casual smartphone snaps, but Apple does not appear to have gone it alone: according to some excellent research done by MacRumors’ Eric Slivka, it appears that Apple acquired a small, Cambridge-based company called Imsense to bring the feature to an iPhone near you.
Before being bought by Apple, Imsense did business in a technology called “eye-fidelity” which used software algorithms to remap image tons in order to produce nearly instantaneous Dynamic Range Correction in both standard and HDR photos. While the iOS 4.1 implementation of HDR is done in the classical fashion of blending three separate exposures into a single image, Imsense’s Eye-Fidelity algorithms appear to be used in iOS 4.1 to further spruce the resulting image up and make the colors pop.
It seems surprising that Apple could make any move to buy a company and not immediately be found out, but it appears that the acquisition went down under everyone’s nose back in July, with three Cupertino officers named directors of Imsense on July 15th, 2010. Could Apple once again be getting a tight grip on the secrecy they’ve lost handle of over the past year?
Stuck on an iPhone 3G or 3GS and jealous of the iPhone 4’s sexy ability to stitch three photos together for a beautifully optimized high-dynamic range snapshot of what it sees out of its tiny oculus? A Cydia tweak is on its way just as soon as the Dev Team releases their iOS 4.1 jailbreak, bringing HDR capability to legacy devices. Of course, the iOS 4.1 jailbreak is still an unknown amount of time away, so we could be waiting on this for sometime… but at least there’s some hope in sight.