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Google Photos to get support for Android 14’s Ultra HDR format

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Last updated: September 1st, 2023 at 08:28 UTC+02:00

During the Google I/O 2023 event in May 2023, Google shared some interesting Android 14 features. The new version of the operating system brings support for the Ultra HDR format for images and videos, and it will be available on select Android phones.

Now, according to a new report (via AssembleDebug), Google is preparing the Google Photos app to support Android 14's Ultra HDR format. A few lines of code were found in Google Photos v6.51.0.561138754, which was released in late August. These strings of code mention Ultra HDR support.

Ultra HDR disabled
UltraHdrPreviewFragment
EDITOR_ULTRA_HDR_PREVIEW
photos_mediadetails_details_ultra_hdr

Ultra HDR has better color vibrancy and details in HDR images and videos

When Google announced the Ultra HDR feature, it said that the feature would be backward compatible with the JPEG format. Images taken in this format will be saved in the original 10-bit HDR. However, you would require an Android 14-powered phone that supports this feature to view it in the original format. On non-supported phones, the Ultra HDR images will be shown in SDR (Standard Dynamic Range).

Apparently, Google is brainstorming and taking steps with chip giants Qualcomm and others to optimize their SoCs to handle the format. Apart from this, Google is also working on making the Ultra HDR format a default on Google Photos for uploading, backing up, editing, sharing, and even downloading.

Speaking of whether all Samsung phones will support Google Photos Ultra HDR format or not, it depends on the capabilities of the phone. Ultra HDR requires a phone to take images and videos in Ultra HDR and display them in the same ultra-high resolution, for which a supported display is required, which not all Samsung phones have. So, the feature will likely be limited to higher mid-range and premium-segment phones and tablets.

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