Surprising camera features on your smartphone

With smartphones adding multiple lenses and increasing the performance of its cameras year after year, you can do unimaginable photography with that little gadget. 

Why spend on those expensive DSLRs when you can click stunners with your smartphone camera? Here are some hidden features present in cameras now-a-days. Level up the mobile photography game.

Portrait mode

One of the favorite modes for Instagrammers, the portrait mode is really useful in taking pictures with an added depth. No more blurring backgrounds manually. Typically, the portrait mode highlights the primary or foreground subject in a picture frame and blurs the background for a classy effect. Pictures taken in the portrait mode are naturally appealing and users don’t even have to put any extra efforts for achieving the result. 

The portrait mode can be accessed usually beside the camera/ video option at the bottom of the screen in almost all smartphone cameras. 

Tip: Introduce artistical element in your images by taking a close-up shot of your subject and follow the rule of thirds for better portrait-mode compositions.


Burst is an option that is ignored often by the shutterbugs. However, this mode can help you get the perfect shot by giving you multiple options to choose from. In smartphones, the burst mode takes multiple shots of the subject and saves it as a separate file. Burst shots come in handy when you are photographing moving objects or even capturing a baby smile or cry. 

In order to take a burst photo, just select the “Burst” mode in your camera and hold the shutter for a little longer than usual for a quick multi-shot sequence. 

Tip: Burst images are widely used for creating animations by looping the successive images.

Live photos

Who said that moving images can only be possible in a disney world? With live photos, you get a moving image that lasts for not more than 3 seconds. We can think of it as something that falls in between a still image and a video clip. It is hard to miss this feature on your smartphone because it effortlessly infuses life into the image and is usually a favourite among nature photography clan.

Switch the “Live Photos” feature on and take stunning moving image clips with just a shutter press on your camera app.


HDR or High Dynamic Range allows users to take sharper and better exposure images. Usually used to enhance the dynamic range (light to dark ratio) of a picture, HDR is one feature that shouldn’t be unknown to you if you wish to be a pro at mobile photography. HDR pictures combine three images shot with different exposures to produce one single, clearer shot. Use it while filming scenes where there is a lot of darkness or bright light.

TIP: HDR option is accessible on the top of the camera screen for most smartphones, just remember to hold the phone steady while taking HDR images because the images take a few seconds more than usual to render.

Image Stabilisation

Picturing moving objects is usually a hard nut to crack, especially for the beginners. However, most smartphones have a feature for addressing these woes in the form of OIS (Optical Image stabilisation). This reduces the blurriness in pictures of fast-moving objects like a car shot or a speeding train. 

Set Focus and adjust exposure

You know your camera is really smart when it understands the subject of a photograph with just a finger tap and “focus” in the right spot. Most smartphones allow you to focus on your subject by clicking on the screen. Once you click on the subject, you get a circle around the primary object, locking it as your image focus.

Once you have set the focus, you can easily adjust the exposure of your photograph by swiping your finger up and down the screen of the camera.  

Some phones even have an auto-focus feature on the front cameras for quick and non-blurry selfies.

Tip: Always set exposure to medium-low levels for obtaining a clearer, original image as the brighter tones can always be added in editing process/filters.

Try these hidden options the next time you are on a trip or simply taking a photography stroll. Get killer shots like a pro. 

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