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Expect depth editing to get a major boost with Android Q's Dynamic Depth Format

Few third-party apps support depth editing, but Android Q's new depth format could help out in a big way.

Published onMarch 14, 2019

Google's Dynamic Depth Format targets dual camera setups and other depth-enabled cameras.

Android Q brings a smorgasbord of features, ranging from improved privacy protection to a rejigged sharing menu. But Google’s update is also bringing the Dynamic Depth Format, and it has the potential to become the standard for depth-related pictures.

“Starting in Android Q, apps can request a Dynamic Depth image which consists of a JPEG, XMP metadata related to depth related elements, and a depth and confidence map embedded in the same file on devices that advertise support,” the company noted in a post on the Android Developers Blog.

The format will also allow third-party apps to manipulate depth data, opening the door for “specialized blurs and bokeh options” in an app. This means you should probably expect big-name photo editing apps on Android to soon offer support for depth editing and other bokeh-related tricks.

It’s a big move for the platform as, aside from Google Photos and OEM photo editing tools, few photo apps offer support for depth-based editing. And Google also says this format can be used for 3D photos or augmented reality photography.

The Mountain View firm plans to make Dynamic Depth Format an open standard, adding that it’s working with various device manufacturers to implement it.

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