Google this year updated Night Sight beyond just taking pictures of dark scenes without flash to also capturing the night sky. Today, it shared the Pixel 4’s astrophotography mode being used to capture the aurora borealis, or the northern lights.

The company had landscape photographer Tom Archer visit Senja, Norway, to shoot the aurora using a Pixel 4. Labeled as an ad, he cites his previous experience about how “night photography is about patience.”

The same shot can look so different throughout the night. So, it’s about spending time out there.

As a result, Archer was particularly enthused about four-minute exposures when the phone is resting perfectly still on a tripod. Up to 15 frames are recorded, with Google explaining the process last month and what it did to account for taking photos of the sky.

It’s just incredible that it can capture these kind of shots. This was completely unreachable before, unless you had a fully professional, very expensive gear.

There’s a behind-the-scenes video of the shoot, while four higher-resolution shots were posted to Instagram. Astrophotography in Night Sight is also available on the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3a with Google Camera 7.2, but exposure time is capped at a minute.

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Abner Li

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