iPhone to Get Gyro Stabilization for Video Recording?
Anyone who has an iPhone 4 and does any kind of video recording knows that even the slightest jolt will cause the frames in the video capture to go nuts. The iPod Touch 4G has a much more stable video capture in terms of movement. That's not to say that the iPhone doesn't have a great camera; 5 megapixels and auto-focus is wonderful but there is a lot to be desired when you are up and walking around and shooting video at the same time. Let's face it, it's extremely jittery.
Apple has noticed its users' desperate cries for more stable video recording. A patent was found titled, "Accelerometer/Gyro-Facilitated Video Stabilization" in which Apple outlined how it would use the accelerometer and gyroscope to help position the camera focus in a more desired way. The idea behind using the gyroscope is to counter movements and hold the camera steady even when being moved around as you would, say, if you were walking.
This technology likely won't benefit iPhone 4 users - but it could be implemented into future iPhone models.
The technology is not hardware-based, it is purely software-based. We've seen this before in iPhone cameras because it exists in how we zoom in (digitally, not optically). Software-based camera improvements have some nasty drawbacks including pixelization for one. The iPhone is a mobile device running on a limited battery pack; by implementing this feature in a software environment, it will cause the processor to work harder and drain battery much more quickly than if hardware was doing the work since gyroscopes move on their own without aided assistance. Another thing to think about is that software uses algorithms that are set and have little wiggle room for interpretation. Estimates might not be absolutely accurate and heavy calibration would be necessary. Without calibration, video wouldn't really be improved with this new feature.
The iPhone would have to determine when using this feature is necessary. This would mean that the device would decide if you were stable, walking, running, or even thrashing around like you had a million bugs crawling on you. This leaves another large margin for error.
On a positive side of things, it could only be an improvement for the iPhone's terrible jitter while recording video.
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