Google Messages is getting a new in-app camera

Google Messages Logo AH 3

When you’re using Google Messages, and you want to take a picture, this is as easy as accessing the in-app camera. Well, according to a new report, Google Messages is getting a new custom in-app camera.

Just like with the Threads in-app camera, the Google Messages in-app camera is actually just your device’s native camera. When you access the camera in Google Messages, it basically taps your device’s native camera and imports the picture that it took. This is a pretty easy way of taking pictures- it beats having to build an entire custom interface.

Well, Google Messages is going to be getting a custom camera interface

This is a small change, so you won’t see any major quality of life changes. Regardless, this could have one major benefit. This way, Google will be able to roll out additional functionality and features to the Google Messages camera app. Relying on your device’s native camera app is very limiting in that regard.

The custom Google Messages camera interface will be pretty basic. Also, it will be missing out on some useful features. Looking at the screenshot below, we see the picture being taken is in the 4:3 aspect ratio, and it does not look like you will have the option to switch between aspect ratios. Hopefully, you will have that functionality in the future. You’re able to switch aspect ratio using your device’s native camera app.

Below the viewfinder, we see the zoom options. These are the 0.5x, 1x, and 2x options. This could be a step backward, as your native camera app could have access to more zoom options depending on your phone’s hardware. For example, taking a picture with the Galaxy S24+ gives you additional zoom options up to 30x.

Google Messages new camera

Along with those options, you have the option to disable/enable the flash, switch to the selfie camera, and switch between photo and video modes on the fly. That last feature will make some people happy. Currently, when you want to add media to your message, you would choose whether you want to take a photo or a video before going to the viewfinder. Well, after the update, you won’t have to worry about picking the wrong mode before entering the viewfinder.

Does it help or hurt?

The ostensible benefit mentioned earlier in the article- Google being able to add features to the in-app camera- might be outweighed by the drawbacks. With this new in-app camera interface, you are losing out on certain features that Google has not put in. You are not able to adjust settings, switch the aspect ratio, enable the grid, or do anything else when taking your picture.

So, this might actually do more harm. We will have to see what Google does with the camera in the future to see if this change is worth it. The update is currently rolling out via a server-side update for the latest beta version of the Google Messages app.

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