Update coming to Google Camera app brings Material You changes, no Frequent Faces

The Camera app found on Pixel handsets, otherwise known as the Google Camera app, is receiving an update to version 8.6. Right off the bat, we can state that the update is not going to add some amazing new camera features. This update is more about the appearance of the Pixel Camera app when opened. The update adds some Material You features and other adjustments to the user interface.

Let’s start with the carousel at the bottom of the app. Sliding it to the left reveals the Modes tab. When that tab is selected, Google Camera app 8.6 places the Panorama, Photo Sphere, and Lens buttons altogether in a grey rectangular box. No big deal. But as you can tell from the image included with this article, after installing the updated version of the app, the buttons now change their color thanks to the Dynamic Color feature that adjusts icons and other key elements to match the main hue of the wallpaper being used on the phone.
9to5Google was the first to spot the changes and noted that the buttons were also moved a little bit lower on the screen to make them easier for those with small fingers to reach. The update was spotted on a Pixel 4a running Android 13.

Right now it appears that the update has yet to be widely disseminated and it has not been made widely available via the Google Play Store. You can check your Pixel to see when the update comes in by opening the Google Play Store. Once the Android app marketplace is open, tap the profile picture in the upper right corner and tap on Manage apps & devices. The screen will show you if you have any apps that have received an update.

Click on “see details” to see a list of the pending updates and look for Google Camera. If you see the app on the list, tap on the word “Update” located inside the lozenge on the very right. And that should take you to Google Camera 8.6.

We should point out that the update does not enable the “Frequent Faces” camera feature that Google recently disabled because of a bug. “Frequent Faces” debuted in 2019 on the Pixel 4 series and it recognizes faces that you’ve photographed or recorded on video. It recommends improvements that you can make to photos of people who often star in your videos and pictures.

Google removed “Frequent Faces” as we noted above, but plans on bringing it back in a future update. No specific date has been mentioned by Google for the return of the feature.

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