Miracle chip for smartphones, tablets ‘makes any photo perfect’

The miracle chip. Credit: MIT
The miracle chip.
Credit: MIT

Your smartphone pictures will be automatically sharpened, adjusted for light and perfectly toned in a fraction of a second, thanks to a new lightweight chip designed by US researchers.

The device, set to be unveiled by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), works by compressing professional software applications into a user-friendly and instant technology for smartphones and tablets. The chip consumes little battery life and can provide the same enhancement for video.

“It’s simple and automatic, the user doesn’t need any photographic expertise,” lead researcher Rahul Rithe told Metro. “If you can point the camera in the right direction the chip will give you a good outcome.”

The ‘picture perfect’ chip is the latest device to offer post-shoot enhancement for amateurs. In 2012, the Lytro camera enabled users to change the focus of images after taking them, making it less important to get the first shot right.

But professional photographers are not panicking yet. “The chip will be great for photographers who don’t understand how to use light,” war photographer Ted Nieters told Metro. “And it won’t change the composition – having better exposure won’t automatically make your shots interesting.”

But that never stopped the legion of Instagram users and Rithe is already in talks with a number of smartphone producers to integrate the device, which should be available for purchase within two years.


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