Google's next adventure? Completely overhauling the Android camera app

HTC One mini camera
Google knows there's work to be done

Google has been steadily improving the camera for the Nexus 5, and soon it may impart some much-needed improvements to all Android users.

Insiders aware of Google's plans confirmed to Engadget that the search company is testing a new version of the built-in camera app for Android.

The sources said the new camera will come with a refreshed user interface and a 100% viewfinder. This means users will be able to see a completely uncropped version of what they're capturing through the screen before they hit the shutter button.

The camera app Android deserves

Other improvements were also highlighted, including one that will add a background blurring effect for portrait pictures. With the effect, Android phones will create photos that simulate the shallow depth of field and bokeh effect of large aperture lenses.

Higher-resolution panorama and Photo Sphere modes are also purported to be included with this next camera update.

What's more, the search company will supposedly open up the camera app with support for third-party filters. If it really happens, this would allow developers and die-hard smartphone shooters to create and import custom effects to the official camera app.

Improvements for all

While the spread of different Android versions is still pretty mixed with some devices still running slightly older versions of Android KitKat, the insiders indicated that the new camera app will come separately.

Supposedly any non-Nexus owners using an phone running Android 4.4 or higher will be able to take advantage of the improvements.

The alleged software patch for the camera will come separate from the rumored Android 4.4.3 update we reported on last week. It was then we heard the next version of KitKat would only provide a small fix to remove the Nexus 5's blue tint issues. Any other features remain unknown.

  • The new HTC One (M8) has a pretty nifty dual-sensor camera. See what it can do in our review!
Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.