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Google’s New iOS App Stabilizes Live Photos

Posted June 8, 2016

Google Research released an iOS app Motion Stills, that acts as a virtual camera operator for your Apple Live Photos. Google’s developed app is actually cooler than a basic Live Photos to GIF converter. Motion Stills uses its own video stabilization algorithms to take what might otherwise be a shaky Live Photo and turn it into a smooth GIF that you’ll actually want to see repeat. Like this:


The app works offline, and you don’t need to sign in to any service in order to use it – just give the app permission to access the photos on your device.

“We pioneered this technology by stabilizing hundreds of millions of videos and creating GIF animations from photo bursts. Our algorithm uses linear programming to compute a virtual camera path that is optimized to recast videos and bursts as if they were filmed using stabilization equipment, yielding a still background or creating cinematic pans to remove shakiness.

Our challenge was to take technology designed to run distributed in a data center and shrink it down to run even faster on your mobile phone. We achieved a 40x speedup by using techniques such as temporal subsampling, decoupling of motion parameters, and using Google Research’s custom linear solver, GLOP. We obtain further speedup and conserve storage by computing low-resolution warp textures to perform real-time GPU rendering, just like in a videogame.

Motion Stills doesn’t require any kind of internet connection to work and all the processing is on-device. You don’t even need a Google account to use it. Once a GIF is made, you can send it to someone in a message, email, or share to another app. It also lets you merge multiple Live Photos together to create a proper movie file (with audio) instead of a GIF.

The app is available today on the App Store. Google may well end up adding the technology into its other applications, like the Google Photos cloud-based photo storage app.


Source: Google Blog

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