With AI making its way into everything that people interact with, it’s no wonder what Apple has seen the potential for including it into its mobile photo enhancement software. Apple’s newest acquisition, a startup named Spectral Edge located in the UK, previously developed AI-based editing software for photos. Apple already has good processing software for their images, but the acquisition of Spectral Edge offers them even more depth of scope in providing on-the-fly image rebalancing.
The Competitive World of Mobile Photography
Hardware for mobile phones that allow them to function as cameras have seen consumers move away from buying dedicated digital cameras. Those that do, spend money on cameras do so in a hobbyist or professional capacity. The hardware alone is not the only arms race that phone companies have become involved in. With social media sites dedicated explicitly to images, mobile phone manufacturers have begun upping the quality of their filters and lenses. Phone cameras today are incredibly advanced compared with their early predecessors.
Hardware and Software Changes Needed for AI Processing
If Apple intends to use Spectral Edge in its photo post-processing, the technology won’t be useful on its current phones. Spectral Edge’s processing utilizes infrared images taken along with the original image to perform post-processing. Unfortunately, Apple’s current phones don’t sport an infrared camera. The company may have to include one if they intend to use the processing from this new acquisition as an in-phone, on-the-fly processing system for photographs.
The company doesn’t NEED to go on this route, however. Apple can take the existing software and tweak it work with its current camera system. However, recent iPhone iterations have shown that Apple is not against, putting more rear-facing cameras on their handsets. It’s not wholly out of the question to consider that they might include an infrared camera as well, just to utilize this new software.