Features cont.

Time Lapse

Time Lapse is a new feature on iOS 8 and the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. It does exactly what it says on the tin and records a time lapse video by capturing 2 frames per second and combining them into a 1080p video clip. Played back at a standard speed of 30 fps this results in a video that is 15x times faster than actual speed. 

You cannot set the recording speed or any other parameters manually but the speed is dynamically adapted to the length of the video. Videos longer than 10 minutes and shorter than 20 will be recorded at 30 x actual speed, 20 to 40 minutes at 60 x actual speed and so on. Every doubling of the capture length beyond 10 minutes means twice the playback speed. There is no limit to recording time other than the storage capacity of your phone. 

The time lapse feature is fun to play with but the lack of any control over parameters means you are better off with a third-party solution from the App Store if you are taking your time lapses seriously. Unlike Instagram's new Hyperlapse App the built-in time lapse mode has to make do without digital image stabilization, so for best results make sure to put your device on a tripod or another type of support.


The default camera app comes with seven filter options that work with both front and rear camera.

The iPhone 6 Plus offers the same seven film-simulation filter options as its predecessor. As before the underlying JPG file isn’t changed by the filter. Apps on the phone will see the “filtered” image, but if you copy the file directly off the phone, you’ll get the unaltered image. You can export the filtered view by sharing the shot using the Photo app’s social media buttons. You can also open it in iPhoto and export it to iTunes. What's new is that you can export the full-size image. Previously, output was limited to approximately 1-megapixel resolution.

Gallery and Image Editor

In album view images can be browsed in a square thumbnail view.

The underlying structure of Apple's Photos app has not changed much since it was overhauled the last time for the launch of iOS 7. However, in the iOS 8 version you get significantly more comprehensive editing options. You can still crop and rotate your images and apply the same filters as in the camera app but there is now also a good range of tonal corrections available. You can adjust exposure, shadows, highlights or the black point for example. In addition there are options for fine-tuning color modifications and black and white conversions.

When viewing images you can choose from two tabs: Photos or Albums. Under Photos, images are automatically sorted into “Moments” (photos shot around the same time), “Collections” (wider ranges of photos, grouped by time and place), and “Years.” In the year view, you get a page chock-full of barely visible thumbnails, but running your finger over them pops up an enlarged view that makes it much easier to find a given needle in the haystack of photos than endless flick-scrolling.

Years view shows all images you have taken in a particular year. You can zoom in for better visibility.
Your photos can also be viewed on a map.
Editing tools now include a ranges of tonal modifications.
Settings can be adjusted on a slider.

Under Albums you can still peruse the whole Camera Roll the old-fashioned way. There are default albums for videos, panoramas, and your Photo Stream (a feature that automatically syncs photos across devices via an Apple iCloud account), and you can create your own within the app.

The Sharing tab has gone in this latest version but you can now access sharing options from the individual image view and also select several images for sharing at once. For example, you can send your images to Facebook, Flickr, Twitter or a Photo Stream, or email them via the Apple Message app. You can also share photos and videos via the AirDrop feature that works on most newer iOS devices.