Google Activates Pixel Visual Core Support for Third-Party Apps

BY Evan Selleck

Published 5 Feb 2018

Google unveiled the Pixel Visual Core co-processor in the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones last October, which uses an HDR+ algorithm and machine learning to try and boost image quality.

The feature went live with Android 8.1 Oreo for both of Google’s smartphones, but it was tied to the stock camera. Which meant if you used the built-in camera feature in third-party apps like Snapchat and Instagram, the Pixel Visual Core’s features wouldn’t kick in. For owners of the two smartphones, though, the wait for that app support is finally over.

Google has officially announced that it is launching support for the Pixel Visual Core in third-party apps beginning today. That means apps like Instagram and Snapchat, as well as other apps that make use of the necessary Android APIs, can take advantage of the Pixel Visual Core for better photos.

“Today we’re turning on Pixel Visual Core for Pixel 2 users—a custom designed co-processor for Pixel 2. Using computational photography and machine learning (which powers Pixel’s HDR+ technology), Pixel Visual Core improves image quality in apps that take photos. This means it’ll be easier to shoot and share amazing photos on Instagram, WhatsApp, and Snapchat, along with many other apps which use the Pixel 2 camera. All you need to do is take the photo and Pixel 2 will do the rest. Your photos will be bright, detailed, and clear.”

The new feature will be rolling out with the February update that is being sent out to the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL owners out in the wild beginning today. It is an over-the-air (OTA) update, so it may take a few days to arrive on all the devices, so keep an eye out.

[via Google Blog]