Google has announced that the Google Photos app is getting expanded functionality for Portrait Blur, which will allow it to be used on many more subjects.
As part of a large number of announcements for Android, Google announced that Portrait Blur is growing in functionality. Previously only available for use only on photos of people, Google is expanding the feature to cover a lot more subjects.
Coming soon to the Photos app on Android, users will be able to use the Portrait Blur effect on photos of a wide range of subjects, like pets, food, and plants. Google says that since the Portrait Blur effect takes place after capture, the new expanded offering can work on photos taken recently or even those captured “years ago,” and even if portrait mode wasn’t available at the time.
“Whether it’s photos of your four-legged friends on vacation, an artistic shot of your prized houseplant, or just what you had for lunch today, the only thing left to focus on is how you’re going to share them,” Google says.
The new feature is a nice enhancement, but it’s not for everyone. The expanded Google Photos Portrait Blur is available only for Pixel smartphone users or Google One subscribers. Additionally, devices must have at least 3GB of RAM and be running Android 8 or above. While Google says it can work on a whole range of new subjects, it might not and in the fine print, the company doesn’t promise it will always be reliable.
The enhancements to Portrait Blur are one of a suite of updates Google has just announced for Android which include enhanced messaging options, better integration with Google TV (which includes a more personalized feed), a screen time widget, and a feature that looks very similar to Apple’s AirDrop. That last note and the updates to messaging appear to be the most significant. Messages are getting emoji support and will share videos in the same resolution they are sent, and “Nearby Share” will make it easy to send photos and videos to multiple people in a users’ vicinity extremely quickly.
Google hasn’t said when these features will roll out, but it should not be a long wait.