Sad as it is to say, people of color are often an afterthought when it comes to cameras and that includes even Google’s. This year, at I/O 2021, Google has announced an effort to create a more “accurate and inclusive” camera for Android smartphones.
Google says that it’s making adjustments to its computational photography algorithms to help take better photos of darker skin tones. This includes adjusting auto white balance to reduce “stray light” and bring out “natural brown tones.” These efforts will also prevent the over-brightening and desaturation of darker skin tones.
This change to create a more inclusive camera for Android doesn’t stop at skin tones, though. Google says it’s also working to better recognize and represent “curly and wavy” hair types in selfies and portrait modes.
In the keynote, Google teases that we’ll see the results of this work on new Pixel phones in the Fall, likely Pixel 6. However, the company is “committed” to sharing this work with the “entire Android ecosystem.”
You can view the full announcement around the 1:38 mark in today’s keynote.
More on I/O 2021:
- Google sends the Blob Opera on tour, starting with extremely fun show at I/O [Video]
- Android widgets can appear in Assistant as Google looks at surfacing in Android Auto
- Google’s new Wear OS looks like it will copy health tracking straight from Fitbit watches
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