Inside iOS 11: Apple's Portrait Mode in iPhone 7 Plus exits beta, allows effect to be turn...

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2017
In the latest iOS 11 beta, Apple has taken the Portrait Mode camera setting out of beta, and has altered how the camera roll handles the pictures to allow for the effect to be removed from a picture with it at any time.




First pointed out by ThinkApple, Portrait Mode not only has exited its beta status, but has seen some improvements as well. The procedure to take the shot is unmodified, but the Edit feature now allows for the effect to be removed at will, and non-destructively.



The effect still can't be applied retroactively if the image wasn't taken in Portrait Mode to begin with.

Apple's Portrait mode takes advantage of the twin cameras on the iPhone 7 Plus, using them to gauge the depth of a scene and blur the background. Apple announced the mode when it revealed the phone on September 7, but said it would only be available in a later software update.

The feature shipped with iOS 10.1 in beta mode on October 24. Apple made the feature the centrepoint of its "Shot on iPhone" advertising campaign, with several ads demonstrating it.

The ability to retain data about the picture, and still save space versus iOS 10 and earlier versions of the operating system are made possible by the addition of HEIC. The 2017 WWDC keynote saw the debut of HEIC for images, and HEVC for video in iOS 11.

For more on Apple's forthcoming operating system update, see AppleInsider's ongoing Inside iOS 11 series

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 12
    AvieshekAvieshek Posts: 100member
    The front camera is where the Portrait camera fits. 
  • Reply 2 of 12
    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    edited August 2017
  • Reply 3 of 12
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 894member
    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    Must be tough to find "good news" in your world where compromise made in the name of progress constitutes "bad news".
    StrangeDaysleavingthebiggrepressthislollivercornchip
  • Reply 4 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,323member
    Avieshek said:
    The front camera is where the Portrait camera fits. 
    No. The portrait camera is the telephoto camera on the rear, used in conjunction with the wide angle camera to determine out of focus blurring.

    the front camera is a “selfie” camera. Big difference.
    RacerhomieXrepressthis
  • Reply 5 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,323member

    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    I’m not sure if it contains the entire picture, the background, or just the mathematical convolution of the background. Until we know which, we can’t say how much space it takes.
    lollivercornchip
  • Reply 6 of 12
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,078administrator
    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    You don't generate one by not taking the picture in Portrait Mode to begin with.
    RacerhomieXalanhleavingthebiggrepressthiscornchip
  • Reply 7 of 12
    melgross said:
    Avieshek said:
    The front camera is where the Portrait camera fits. 
    No. The portrait camera is the telephoto camera on the rear, used in conjunction with the wide angle camera to determine out of focus blurring.

    the front camera is a “selfie” camera. Big difference.
    In the new iPhone 8 with 3D facial recognition, they should be able to reproduce a similar bokeh effect with the front camera and sensors. I expect the iPhone 8 may also be able to record portrait mode video and automatic masking for 3rd party editing programs.
  • Reply 8 of 12
    smiffy31smiffy31 Posts: 170member
    melgross said:

    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    I’m not sure if it contains the entire picture, the background, or just the mathematical convolution of the background. Until we know which, we can’t say how much space it takes.
    Its much simpler than that, the HEIF container stores the depth map that the portrait mode uses to calculate the effect. So as you say it is mathematical.
  • Reply 9 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,323member
    melgross said:
    Avieshek said:
    The front camera is where the Portrait camera fits. 
    No. The portrait camera is the telephoto camera on the rear, used in conjunction with the wide angle camera to determine out of focus blurring.

    the front camera is a “selfie” camera. Big difference.
    In the new iPhone 8 with 3D facial recognition, they should be able to reproduce a similar bokeh effect with the front camera and sensors. I expect the iPhone 8 may also be able to record portrait mode video and automatic masking for 3rd party editing programs.
    Having 3D recognition doesn’t mean having “Portrait mode” pictures. Facial recognition as used here, would only work up to a certain distance. But with portrait mode, you need to be able to calculate distance, and focus information out to infinity. The second camera gives a 3D view of the scene because the cameras are a small distance apart, thereby imaging two different scenes, with two different focal lengths.

    facial recognition can’t do those sort of calculations because the scene is viewed, and imaged, from one camera, from one point. If IR is used. Or a laser, it isn’t used in the same manner as a different lens. It’s hard to explain it all here.
    edited August 2017
  • Reply 10 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,323member
    smiffy31 said:
    melgross said:

    I suspect this is good and bad news. It presumably means the HEIF container is storing both versions. Neater in the camera roll, but you won't be able to discard the unwanted version. Hence it's a waste of space. I know the HEIF images will occupy only 50% of the current JPEGS, but still, I don't like having valuable storage assigned to crap I don't want. Unless you can remove the alternate version from the HEIF container or elect not to generate one in the first place. If that is the case, then great.
    I’m not sure if it contains the entire picture, the background, or just the mathematical convolution of the background. Until we know which, we can’t say how much space it takes.
    Its much simpler than that, the HEIF container stores the depth map that the portrait mode uses to calculate the effect. So as you say it is mathematical.
    The depth map is the convolution. So if that’s what it’s doing (I haven’t looked into this yet,) it doesn’t take up much memory to store.
  • Reply 11 of 12
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,868member
    Seems a silly title / name IMHO given the term 'Portrait Mode' and its counter part  'Landscape Mode' have long standing meanings in photography and this has nothing to do with either.  The fact the demo above is showing off this 'Portrait Mode' in Landscape Mode doubles the weirdness. 
    edited August 2017
  • Reply 12 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,323member
    MacPro said:
    Seems a silly title / name IMHO given the term 'Portrait Mode' and its counter part  'Landscape Mode' have long standing meanings in photography and this has nothing to do with either.  The fact the demo above is showing off this 'Portrait Mode' in Landscape Mode doubles the weirdness. 
    Yeah, that’s true. But we’ve seen old terms being reused when new technologies and industries spring up.

    so another photography term that’s abused, to my way of thinking, is the term “prime lens”. When I started out in photography, as a kid, in the early mid 1960s, prime lenses were called that because they were the lenses that came with the camera, and thus, were the first, and most used lens, earning the term “prime”. This lens was almost always something between 50 to 58mm, depending on how old the design was, the 58mm Biogons being the oldest designs.

    back then there were no real zooms. Zooms were very hard to make, and the few that were out there were pretty bad. The first high quality zoom came a bit later, and was the Canon Pro 80-200 f2.8. In its day, it was a great lens, expensive, but not atrociously so. It became a popular Pro lens when ultimate quality wasn’t needed. After that, we began to see more zooms.

    but they were still heavy, big, and pretty expensive, until again, Canon led the way with the first variable max f stop. So, that allowed zooms to have say, f3.5 at the widest, and maybe an f5.6 at the longest. That lowered the size, weight, and most importantly, the price. It opened up zooms for everyone. Generally only Pro zooms have a fixed max f stop today.

    sometime after that, I found people writing about prime 100mm lenses, and prime 200mm lenses, and prime 24mm lenses, etc. The change in the term had begun. Now, any lens that’s not a zoom is a prime. I still don’t like it, but that’s what it is.
    edited August 2017
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