Google unlocks Pixel Visual Core for third-party camera apps

Google will now allow third-party apps such as Instagram, Snapchat, and WhatsApp to make use of its Pixel Visual Core, that uses machine learning and AI to enhance the quality of the image.

By Vishal

Ever since the Google Pixel 2 has seen the light of day, the company has been poised to offer its users with better camera functionality. Now the company has finally unlocked the Pixel Visual Core for the Pixel 2 users. It is a custom co-processor that uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to enhance the quality of the images.

Google unlocks Pixel Visual Core for third-party camera apps


But hold on, there's more. The company is going out of its way to offer this feature for third-party apps such as Instagram, Snapchat, and WhatsApp. Now the Pixel 2 users will be able to take enhanced pictures using the third-party app cameras. The company earlier enabled the Visual Core's HDR+ technology for Pixel 2's main camera.

Incorporating Visual Core with the third-party camera apps will improve the quality of the image despite the compression of the file. Google also shared few sample shots from the Visual Core activated camera. The sample images show that the camera performs better in low light and the images come out well with ample amount of light. The HDR+ technology helps users take images with less noise and blur.

The company's blog post reads: "Pixel Visual Core is built to do heavy-lifting image processing while using less power, which saves battery. That means we're able to use that additional computing power to improve the quality of your pictures by running the HDR+ algorithm. Like the main Pixel camera, Pixel Visual Core also runs RAISR (Rapid and Accurate Image Super-Resolution), which means zoomed-in shots look sharper and more detailed than ever before. Plus, it has Zero Shutter Lag to capture the frame right when you press the shutter, so you can time shots perfectly."

Google will be rolling out the update over the next few days, along with the other Pixel software enhancements. The company has also recommended users to download the February update whenever it's released.


The company also mentions in the blog that these aren't the only updates coming to Pixel this month. The update will be adding new Augmented Reality (AR) stickers themed around winter sports.

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"Later this week, we are adding new Augmented Reality (AR) Stickers themed around winter sports, so you can dress up videos and photos with freestyle skiers, twirling ice skaters, hockey players, and more. Like all AR stickers, these characters interact with both the camera and each other, creating a fun-filled way to enhance the moments you capture and share," said Ofer Shacham, Engineering Manager for Pixel Visual Core.

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