The Essential Phone has the hardware to compete with phones that cost much more than its revised $500 price, but specs aren't everything. Case in point: the camera. The Essential Phone has a pair of 13MP camera sensors, but the performance was poor. Essential has been working to improve it with updates, and the latest one claims to address HDR. There's finally an autoHDR mode and a new HDR algorithm.
Here's the changelog for Essential Camera v0.1.096.003.
- Added AutoHDR mode
- New HDR algorithm improves performance, capture speed and scene rendering
- Dynamic HDR and Flash indicators highlight icons when HDR or flash is used in auto mode
- Various stability fixes
We just released an update to Essential Camera App that adds Auto-HDR, a new HDR algorithm that improves camera performance and scene rendering, dynamic HDR and Flash indicators, and various stability fixes. Download it here: https://t.co/zXoZ765GHF pic.twitter.com/sxLcHEHJ5n
— Essential (@essential) February 8, 2018
Unlike a lot of high-end phones, the Essential Phone has thus far not had an autoHDR setting. Thus, you needed to toggle HDR on manually each time you wanted to use it, and the quality wasn't great. Capture speeds were also mega-slow. This update adds autoHDR and should improve the speed and quality of the resulting images. The update is live in the Play Store for everyone.