The latest update to the Pixel series Google Camera app, version 8.2, has begun rolling out, bringing an improved experience for taking videos with a long-press of the shutter button.

Much of the photography prowess of the Google Pixel series is thanks to the fantastic Google Camera app, with its variety of modes, AI enhancements, and tools. Because of this, when Google Camera gets an update, Pixel owners take notice, in hopes of new features.

As of late this evening, the Google Play Store has begun rolling out version 8.2 of the Camera app, a slight bump from the previous 8.1 release, to Pixel owners. So far, we’ve only confirmed the update to have arrived on a Pixel 5, but owners of the Pixel 4a 5G, Pixel 4a, and more hopefully shouldn’t have too long to wait.

The biggest change we’ve discovered in Google Camera 8.2 is a major revamp to taking videos by pressing and holding the shutter button. In previous versions, this long-press simply started a video recording, but with the latest update, you can now slide your finger in one direction to control zoom or slide it a different way to “lock” the recording. Once you’ve locked the recording, you can release your finger and the video will continue to record until you press stop.

Here’s a quick demo of Google Camera 8.2’s new feature in action:

As you can see, the feature can be a bit tricky to use, especially on the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G, which can switch between normal and wide angle cameras when zooming in and out. That said, if your goal is to start recording as quickly as possible, this long-press gesture and its newly added zoom and lock gestures are definitely the way to go.

Notably, the Google Camera 8.2 rollout comes less than a week after Pixel phones received March’s quarterly “Feature Drop,” which was headlined by underwater photography capabilities and a Pixel Stand update. Given the close timing, it seems strange that this long-press video recording enhancement wasn’t included as part of the March Pixel Feature Drop.

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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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