A lot of people are accusing Apple of not making enough changes to the iPhone 5s, but if you look beyond the numbers, the latest model of the smartphone is certainly a huge improvement over its predecessor. The camera is still 8 megapixel, but its anti-shaking features and better low-light capturing capabilities make it a significantly better than the lens in iPhone 5. Having said that, no hardware can garner too much appreciation without the proper software to complement it. iOS 7 is the biggest change that has ever been made to Apple’s mobile platform, which means the Camera app is among the many areas of the OS that have been rebuilt almost from scratch. The app now offers a new UI to match the interface changes in other parts of iOS, and there are live photo effects on offer as well. Another addition that might not be too obvious is the new burst mode.
The camera grabber in iOS 7 hasn’t changed much from iOS 6, apart from the fact that it is translucent and adopts the color of the wallpaper behind it. That’s where the familiarity ends though. Once the app has been launched, you enter a whole new world compared to older versions of iOS.
The ‘Options’ button has been removed from Camera in iOS 7, but that doesn’t mean any of the features have gone away. They are all there, but have been scattered around the screen to different locations. The HDR toggle is in the middle of the top bar, and you just have to tap it once to toggle it. The flash control is in the left corner of the same bar, while the icon that lets you switch between rear and front lenses is in the top-right.
By swiping across the preview screen, you can change capture modes with ease. There’s nothing new with ‘Video’, ‘Photo’, and ‘Pano’, but ‘Square’ mode is a new arrival. With Square, you can take photos that are perfect for using as your avatars, sharing on Instagram, and other social networking services.
It would have been nice to see a visible trigger for it, but the burst mode is useful anyway. To take a lot of photos in quick succession, simply tap the capture button, and keep it pressed for as long you want to keep shooting. The screen does not indicate that you are in burst mode, but the results speak for themselves.
Now that everything else is out of the way, we come to the most exciting part of the Camera app: real-time photo filters. Hitting the icon in the bottom-right opens the effect grid. These effects are no different from the ones on offer in the stock Photos app, however, you get to apply them over the viewfinder right here in the Camera, and shoot photos that way. Three of the filters (Mono, Tonal and Noir) are greyscale, while the rest offer different tints.
When used alongside each other, the Camera and Photos apps in iOS 7 might be capable of sounding the death knell for many photography apps. The best part about the iOS 7 Camera is that it manages to pack in a good number of features without seeming too bloated.
This post is one part of a compilation. For info on other major new features and changes introduced in the latest iteration of Apple’s mobile OS, check out our complete iOS 7 guide.