iPhone 6s Live Photos Explained

September 12, 2015

Man playing a guitar

With the new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus Apple introduced a new feature called Live Photos. In this article we’ll talk about this new unique feature.

Live Photos is a new feature that gives you the option to capture a short 3-second video clip alongside yourh12MP high-resolution photo, which also include sound. When you press the shutter button, the camera automatically captures 1.5-second sequence of images before and after you’ve taken the shot. Well, the animated scene isn’t saved as a video clip, but a Motion JPEG (M-JPEG) image file, and the audio is saved separately and referenced to that file. So in fact, a Live Photo is actually a a photo, but the operating system identified them as such and knows how to play them differently from other photos. This Live Photos feature is uniquely designed to work on the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6s Plus’ 3D Touch gesture, and you can set your Live Photo as your iPhone 6s wallpaper or even as a watch face on Apple Watch – Cool!

Can I turn Live Photos feature off? — By default, the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus capture photos as Live Photos. There is a yellow circle indication icon that shows if the Live Photos feature is active or not, so you can turn it off if you like.

So what’s the Live Photo file size? – Well, it’s reportedly equivalent to two full-res 12MP images. So it’s not that you are getting a file size equivalent to a six full-resolution image times, it doesn’t work that way. Apple uses an efficient frame-to-frame technology (probably uses advanced compression of some sort) to make the Live Photo file size as small as possible with minimum impact on image quality.

How do you play a Live Photo? — as I mentioned before, this new cool feature was designed to work with the new 3D Touch technology introduced with the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S+. In order to play a Live Photo, you need to press and hold on your photo to play the photo sequence.

Here’s a video by TechCrunch that talks about the new Live Photos technology.

The Live Photos feature is very similar to the Nokia Lumia’s Live Images App, like on the Lumia 1020, Lumia 1520, Icon and other models. Live Apple’s Live Photos, Nokia’s Living Images also saves a few seconds of images before and after you’ve taken the shot. Also like Live Photos, you have the option to browse the photos while taking a glimpse of the motion capture for each photo.

I’m sure that it happens to you many times that you’ve viewed a photo and you wished you can jump back in time and experienced it Live, and now, in some way you can. Watching photos has become even more exciting.