Latest Google Camera update catches older Pixel phones up on features

Latest Google Camera update catches older Pixel phones up on features

With a couple of exceptions

This week marked the first Feature Drop since the arrival of the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro, and accordingly, many of the changes included were exclusive to that particular phone. That said, anyone still relying on an older Pixel as their daily driver hasn’t been left out in the cold. Alongside new wallpapers and changes to some crucial settings on Android, Google is also bringing some Pixel 7 tools to the Camera app, just days after overhauling macro mode on its latest flagship.


Macro mode is, of course, exclusive to the Pixel 7 Pro, so unsurprisingly, you won’t see that update here. But Camera 8.7 — which brings older Google phones up to date with the company’s 2022 flagships — do contain a few key changes. As spotted by 9to5Google, the update is making its way out to legacy Pixels via the Play Store, bringing a handful of changes to devices as far back as the Pixel 4a series.

Since these phones are playing catch-up, it should come as no surprise that none of these are “new” features. Instead, we’ve seen them all before on the Pixel 7, which received Google Camera 8.7 as an update timed with launch day. Included in today’s patch is double-tap to zoom, something that, honestly, should’ve been in the viewfinder all along. As you might expect, double-tapping anywhere on the frame in front of you zooms in by 2x, while a second double-tap zooms out. It’s been really useful having this on the Pixel 7 for one-handed shots, and I’m happy to see it coming to older phones.

Saving photos to your private gallery is now easier than before, as pressing and holding on the gallery shortcut provides an option to switch your file destination. Meanwhile, 9to5 reports that Familiar Faces has returned to the app for the first time in seven months.

Unfortunately, Night Sight remains unchanged compared to the Pixel 7 series. Google’s latest phones allow you to adjust the exposure time manually, but on my Pixel 6, it’s still a simple on-off toggle with auto-exposure. It’s unclear whether this change will ever come to older phones — here’s hoping it’s included in Camera 8.8. For now, you can grab this update from the Play Store, or hit up APK Mirror to grab the latest APK. The holiday season is the perfect occasion to up your photo game, so get to snappin’.