Pixel Phones Will Be Able to Take HDR Photos and Videos Inside of Instagram

Google Pixel 8 Pro

One of the Samsung Galaxy S24 series’ unique features is about to become less so, as Google is set to allow Pixel 7 and Pixel 8 devices to capture HDR photos and videos directly inside of Instagram.

Of note, Meta did confirm to The Verge back in January that Samsung wouldn’t retain this unique ability forever and that it was working with other Android partners (and Apple’s iOS devices) to integrate the feature over time. That time is, apparently, starting this month.

While Samsung’s handhelds will always carry the ability to say they were the first to do so, Google will be updating its Pixel 7, Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro, and Pixel Fold smartphones with the ability to capture and upload HDR photos and videos inside of Instagram.

During its AI-heavy Galaxy S24 announcement in January, Samsung said that its new smartphones would be the first to enable HDR photos on Instagram and would allow Snapchat users to make use of the native camera features of inside of the app. Samsung still retains the “first and only” titles when it comes to low light Nightography photos, but HDR capture is coming to Google smartphones on March 11 in the United States (March 4 everywhere else). Google did not mention Snapchat, however, so Samsung still owns that one outright. Also worth mentioning are Galaxy S24-specific updates Samsung plans to bring to the smartphones in the coming weeks.

Google says that Pixel phones record “stunning video with brilliant colors, brighter intensity, and higher contrast” in HDR mode and now useres can capture and share 10-bit HDR videos directly on Instagram Reels (when compared to non-Ultra HDR video that is not recorded in 10-bit HDR).

Similarly, Pixel owners will be able to upload and share Ultra HDR photos on Instagram.

Circle to Search Sees Wider Support, Too

Another feature that landed on Samsung S24 devices first but rolled out to Google’s latest handhelds a month later is Circle to Search, which allows users to search for anything on screen easily.

“Search, without switching apps. Just long press the Pixel home button or navigation bar, then draw a circle around, scribble, highlight or tap an image, text, or video, and get the information you need, right where you are,” Google explains.

Being Google-powered, it was always unlikely that Samsung would retain the feature exclusively and that was confirmed when it was added to Pixel 8 and 8 Pro. Confirmed today, Google is bringing Circle to Search to Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro, too.

Image credits: Google