What is Night Sight and how do I get it?

Say goodbye to blurry and grainy low light photos
What is Night Sight and how do I get it?
Taking pictures at night just got a whole lot better thanks to Google’s latest camera update.

Originally an exclusive feature of the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, Night Sight is such a big hit with users it’s now been added to all of Google’s Pixel phones - thanks to a recent software update. But what exactly is all of the hype about? Let’s take a look…

What is Night Sight?

Night Sight fixes a problem that’s existed ever since a camera was first added to a phone nearly twenty years ago.

We’ve all been there, you spot a great photo opportunity and reach for your phone. But it’s dark so you switch on night mode, only to be disappointed with the blurry and grainy results.

When it comes to taking pictures in the dark, phones have always been overshadowed by dedicated cameras. Even some of the best smartphones on the market struggle to take great looking low-light shots – until now, that is.

Google’s nifty new feature uses some very clever technology to help you capture great looking low-light photos.

How does Night Sight work?

The reason proper cameras have always been better than phones at taking low-light photos is that they have much bigger lenses. A bigger lens is better at letting in more light.

Phones tend to have smaller lenses so they need to use software trickery to get around the problem. Google has packed some very smart software into their Pixel phones that captures up to 15 frames when you take a Night Sight photo.

It then stitches all the photos together to give you the best possible image.

Other phones have similar features but Google takes it a step further. It uses a clever technique called ‘Optical Flow’ which senses how much movement is in the scene and chooses a different exposure time for each frame.

If that wasn’t enough, it then scans the final image and smooths out any of the grainy after-effects that you usually get with this kind of software – and the results are stunning!

The image below shows the difference between a standard photo and one taken using Night Sight, both were taken at night and we didn't use the flash at all...

google pixel night sight

How do I use Night Sight?

Using Night Sight couldn’t be simpler. When you’re taking a photo in low-light conditions, your Pixel will be able to tell that it’s a dark scene and a “Try Night Sight” button will appear. Just tap it to turn it on.

Don’t worry if the button doesn’t appear, you can turn it on manually. Just open your camera app, tap More, then Night Sight.

Find out what else the Pixel 3 can do

Do you already use Night Sight mode? What are the benefits? Let us know in the comments below.

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

comments powered by Disqus
The notch sparked controversy when Apple added it to the iPhone X, but what is it and why does it fe

11 January, 2019
Facial recognition has become the new norm in smartphone security – but how does...
8 January, 2019
Take a look at some of our favourite hidden smartwatch and fitness band features...
7 January, 2019
The notch sparked controversy when Apple added it to the iPhone X, but what is it...
4 January, 2019
If you’ve made a New year’s resolution to get fit, here are seven health & fitness...
3 January, 2019
Take a look at some of the rumours circling around one of the year’s biggest tech...
20 December, 2018
We’ve all heard our fair share of tech tales over the years – but here’s the truth...
20 December, 2018
The OPPO Find X is here, and its powerful performance, futuristic pop-up camera and...
17 December, 2018
Whether you’re gifting a VR headset or exploring new worlds for yourself, virtual...
12 December, 2018
Hosting Christmas is a massive task. So why not prepare for the festivities with...
12 December, 2018
Cut the cord and treat yourself to some headphones that use Bluetooth technology...
11 December, 2018
2018 was a big year for phones. We’ve had flagships from Apple, Samsung, Huawei,...
11 December, 2018
Despite what you may have heard, it turns out that our tech isn’t responsible for...