Despite the “Photos” name, the Google Photos app is capable of managing both still images and videos. Now, Google Photos is improving its video capabilities by adding pinch-to-zoom along with a double-tap gesture.

Over the years, phone cameras have steadily become more capable than the device’s own display. The clearest example is that many phones offer 4K video recording while very few phones have an actual 4K resolution display. Instead, to view your 4K videos in full resolution, you need to open them on another device with a 4K display.

As spotted by Reddit, via Android Police, the Google Photos app is bringing a way to quickly spot-check your videos by bringing two new zoom gestures. The first is a simple double-tap gesture that causes Google Photos to zoom in on the spot you’ve tapped, while a second double-tap zooms back out.

The second gesture added is a traditional pinch-to-zoom that allows you to precisely zoom in or out on particular areas of your video. Once zoomed in, Google Photos allows you to scroll around the video with a simple touch and drag motion.

All in all, this is a straightforward feature that likely should have been available for years, rather than something launching in 2021. For now, the feature is only gradually rolling out as one of Google’s many feature tests. Whether or not the video zoom controls are available can even vary between two phones on the same Google Account.

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About the Author

Kyle Bradshaw

Kyle is an author and researcher for 9to5Google, with special interests in Made by Google products, Fuchsia, and Stadia.

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