June 24, 2021

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Google could be readying a cool astro timelapse feature for Pixels

Google debuted an astrophotography mode on the Pixel 4 series back in late 2019, coming to earlier Pixels as well. The mode allows users to take astrophotography shots, combining 16 15-second frames to get the final, star-filled result.

Now, 9to5Google has dug into the latest version of the Pixel Tips app (3.4.0.373287606), discovering references to an “astrotimelapse” feature. There’s no further information on what exactly this could be, but we have an idea of what to expect.

Our best guess is that Google is working on the ability to record timelapse videos of the night sky, using a similar principle as the astrophotography mode but spitting out a video instead of an image. It wouldn’t be the first Android manufacturer to offer this feature though.

Realme debuted a Starry Timelapse feature on the Realme 8 Pro earlier this year, taking 15 16-second exposures to generate one frame of video. The manufacturer said at the time that you’d need to shoot for eight minutes to get one second of video in this mode. Check out a few samples from the Realme 8 Pro below.

We’re therefore expecting a similar feature on the Google Pixel line, but hopefully we see shorter shooting times for the final result. In any event, 9to5Google says the astrotimelapse feature seems to check if you’re running version 8.2.3 of the Google Camera app. The latest version is 8.2.2, suggesting that a new update could be around the corner.