Friday, May 17, 2013

WP8 Amber update to bring Smart Camera, FM radio to old Lumias

Nokia just announced the Lumia 925, which packs the Smart Camera app – the culmination of the company's acquisition of Scalado. The app will be released to current WP8 Lumias later on with a firmware update Nokia calls the Lumia Amber update.

The app snaps a burst of 5MP photos (the camera uses an 8.7MP sensor) and does cool tricks with it. One is Action shot, which is similar to the Sequence shot in the HTC One and Drama shot in the Galaxy S4. Here's how it works on video:

You can also remove moving objects, which got its own video demo. The Smart Camera app can also pick the best expression for every shot.

Another cool trick is Motion focus, which makes it look like you're tracking a fast moving object. There's no video for that one, but here's a photo taken with that mode:

Motion focus sample taken with the Nokia Lumia 925 (click for full size)

The Amber update packs a surprise too – it enables the FM radio that's hidden inside every Lumia phone to date, except for the Lumia 620.

There might be other features (including new Smart Camera modes and operator specific features), but Nokia is yet to announce the complete changelog. The update should be out some time in the summer.


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