When Google released the Pixel 5, one of the new things that users could expect was a redesigned Google Camera app. Not only do you get a cleaner looking design but you also get a newer layout as well as reorganized features so using your Pixel device’s camera is easier and more convenient. While version 8 of the camera app was initially available only for the newest Google smartphones, it seems that the latest update will also be available to older Pixel phones.
According to 9 to 5 Google and @KaKito_24 on Twitter, Google Camera 8.1 has started appearing for devices other than the Pixel 5. The build is showing up for the Pixel 4 XL devices and I actually marked as compatible with other Pixel devices as far back as the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. Sorry original Pixel owners, it seems your phone is too outdated to be able to carry this new version of the camera app.
The redesigned camera app sees most of its features reorganized on the bottom bar for easier access. You also get new features like Audio Zoom and one-tap zoom adjustments. There are also new video stabilization features and Cinematic Pan. However, that last one seems to be only available for the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL probably due to some camera specifications needed that may not be present in older Pixels.
If you’re too impatient and want to sideload the Google Camera 8.1 onto your supported Pixel device, we have bad news for you. It seems like it’s no longer an option for you and even on the newest Pixel 5 device, there are errors when it comes to verification. So you’ll have to actually wait for the update to roll out through the Google Play Store like any normal update. And anyway, that is the more stable version so it pays to wait.
Rolling out features from the newest smartphones to the older versions of the Pixel smartphone is a good move for Google. People are not upgrading their devices every year so keeping them happy with their current devices is crucial for them to stay loyal to your brand.