Is Google's Lens Blur tool in new Camera app better than Nokia Refocus?


Google released its new camera app today called Google Camera and if you’re on Android 4.4 KitKat, you’ll be able to test this out right now. One of the nifty features in the new camera app is Lens Blur. This is very similar to what Nokia did with their Refocus app. You can read about the new app in more detail here.

 

Since we had both features at hand, we figured why not test this out and see which platform does it better. We tested Lens Blur on the Motorola Moto X and the Refocus on the Lumia 920. The idea here is not to see which one captures a clearer image but which app does a better job at manipulating the focus.

 

The Google app scores well only because we manually focused on the subject. Without that, it's tough to get a clear picture with multiple subjects

The Google app scores well only because we manually focused on the subject. Without that, it's tough to get a clear picture with multiple subjects

 

One again, the projector looks sharper in Lens Blur because we can vary the intensity of the blur

Once again, the projector looks sharper in Lens Blur because we can vary the intensity of the blur

 

Google’s Lens Blur has one neat feature that’s missing from the Nokia’s Refocus app and that’s the ability to play around with the blur intensity for the background or foreground. The images shot with Google’s Lens Blur looks a lot more striking due to this fact. However, in terms of the number of focus points that are available to play with, Nokia’s Refocus app does a much better job here. Google’s Lens Blur is unable to get the full scene in focus accurately, due to which only some areas are sharp while others remain blurry despite shifting focus to them in post.

 

In the end, both apps perform pretty well although we feel Nokia has a slight edge when it comes to the capturing multiple focus points. It’s nice to see Google learning a thing or two from Nokia and hopefully they can add more functionality to this first effort.


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