The already-powerful Lumia imaging tools such as Living Images and Rich Capture in the Windows 10-enabled Microsoft Lumia 950 and Microsoft Lumia 950 XL have been improved to give you the best photos ever.
The Lumia family smartphones has always been notable for its imaging prowess.
Zeiss optics, advanced optical image stabilization, and highly tuned and accurate software and hardware controls, to name just a few features, have made Lumia phones a go-to device for shutterbugs everywhere.
With new and improved imaging features it’s easier for you not just to capture the best photos and videos possible—but to better share them with friends and family.
We spoke with Karl Wittenmark, director of software program management within the photography group at Microsoft, who walked us through some of the Camera and imaging improvements that appear in the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL.
Living Images: easier sharing, better quality, automatic movement detection
Pioneered by Lumia, living images are magical photos that extend the image with a bit of video. So if you snap a photo of your child waving his arms, you’ll see a snippet of that movement in the resulting Living Image.
What’s new with Windows 10 is that you can now share these living images between one Windows 10-enabled device and another. You can share via email, Bluetooth, and even NFC. If you send a Living Image to a friend who has Surface device or PC with Windows 10, he or she will now see a photo with movement.
This new sharing function is made possible because content is now encapsulated into one JPEG file, not two, said Karl.
“Before, the image and video were in separate files. Now, the living image content is self-contained,” he said. “It’s much easier to consume and share.”
You can also share a living image to a non-Windows device—just select whether you’d like to share it as a still image or as a video. And if you want to share a living image on Facebook, you can also do that: Choose “Share as video” in Photos and all of your Facebook friends can see these “moving pictures.”
What’s also cool is that the video portion of these photos has been extended from 0.6 second to one full second so you can see even more of a moment captured in time.
But what if you take an image of a stationery object, such as close-up of a flower, or notes on a whiteboard? The camera now automatically detects if there is motion in the scene. For scenes with motion, living images plays and adds emotional value to your pictures. Your whiteboard pictures are still shown as regular static pictures.
Perfect pictures without being a pro
With the Lumia 950 and 950 XL, everyone can capture perfect pictures. That’s because the camera automatically optimizes the settings for every user and scene– from stunning static landscapes to sports scenes without motion blur.
Rich Capture, which includes High Dynamic Range and Dynamic Flash to produce beautiful pictures, “is now more intelligent and automatic,” said Karl.
It includes the unique ability to adjust the amount of flash even weeks after the picture was taken. This together with our new triple LED natural flash that adjusts color to the scene means you can capture the best and most natural flash pictures ever.
We have especially focused our energy to help you get great results when snapping people and things in everyday situations. When Rich Capture is enabled, you’ll notice that you get super-sharp pictures even indoors—helpful when you’re trying to take photos of energetic kids in motion, for example.
The new automatic Rich Capture applies HDR only for the most challenging scenes. And when HDR is enabled, you can adjust the amount to your personal preference.
There may be times when you want to slow down a part of video you’ve recorded to better see the action on the screen. For example, maybe you want to slow down footage of a skier zooming down a mountain or a gymnast as she leaps and somersaults.
With the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL, we introduced slow-motion video capture with up to 120 fps in 720p resolution.
Edit your slow motion videos directly from the Photos application.
Trim your videos and select which parts that should play back in slow motion and which parts should play back in normal speed. Select super-slow for those special moments and freeze a moment in time with 32 times slow motion effect!
“Try it out. It’s a really powerful and fun,” Karl said.
Switch on the slow-motion toggle (look for the turtle!) in the camera application to apply the slow-motion effect when capturing videos.
If you have the Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL, have you experimented with these improved imaging features? Let us know on Twitter via @Lumia.
Updated December 15, 2015 3:00 pm