Samsung Update Brings New Camera Features to Old Phones

A photo of the Object Eraser option on a Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung is bringing the Galaxy S22’s Object Eraser to more devices.
Photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

It’s always a cause for celebration when there’s a software update pushed out to Android users. And today, Samsung is bringing some of the best features from the Galaxy S22 series of smartphones to previous generations of its flagship devices.

The company announced that One UI 4.1 would start rolling out to older models in the coming weeks, including the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S21, Galaxy S10, and the very last of its kind, the Galaxy Note 20. The folding Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip are also a part of the update, and some Galaxy A series smartphones and the Tab S series tablets.

One UI 4.1 boasts a ton of new camera-centric features. This includes the Expert RAW mode, coming specifically to the S21 Ultra, though you’ll have to download it directly from the Galaxy Apps store to enable it. Samsung is also bringing over its Object Eraser, which works similarly to Google Photos’ Magic Eraser in that it lets you select a person or thing to scrub them out of the photo.

The official Korean Samsung community forums offer more insight into the camera features coming through and which models will see the particular update. Portrait mode is getting a boon with night portraits, which will work on the front camera and the 1x lens on the rear camera of the other Galaxy smartphones. Portrait mode will also accommodate pets so that the blur around their fur is just right. If your Galaxy S device has a telephoto lens on the back, they’ll support the Portrait-based movie mode so that you can take close-up shots of far-away subjects.

The software update improves the latest video recording interface. Videos shot with the front- and rear-facing cameras will save in separate folders. And you can also play video and edit it simultaneously in the Samsung camera app — a helpful move pulled from desktop-based video editing apps.

One UI 4.1 has other feature updates beyond the camera app. Older Galaxy devices will have access to the Galaxy S22’s Grammarly-powered keyboard, though you’ll have to dig through a few menu schematics to get to the option in the Samsung Keyboard app. Photo sharing is also more streamlined — any photos you share will be automatically cropped and optimized before they go out to another app, like screenshots with unnecessary status details at the top. And you’ll be the first to have access to Google Duo’s Live Sharing functionality.

Samsung says the One UI 4.1 rollout has started in select regions, with the US market expected to see it in the coming weeks. However, some folks have already experienced the update on devices like the Galaxy Z Flip 3 and Z Fold 3.

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