iPhone 12 is about to get a killer camera update to take photo editing to the next level

iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max users get the ProRaw image format

iPhone 12 stack
(Image credit: The Mac Observer)

The iPhone may still have a notch unlike the upcoming ZTE Axon, but it's still a hugely desirable phone. That's particularly true of iPhone 12 Max and 12 Pro Max, and now the latter premium models are getting new features to continue to make them more tempting than iPhone 12 and 12 Mini.

The iOS 14.3 beta is live for third-party developers, bringing with it the ProRaw image format. For all of you iPhone 12 Max and 12 Pro Max users, this means greater control over the photos you take.

Apple iPhones currently take pictures in two formats: JPEG and raw. JPEG photos are a standard: they take up little space by automatically determining a photo's exposure, color balance, and more – with little wiggle room for you to edit the photo later. Conversely, raw photos don't lock in any of a photo's features, so you can fully manipulate it in the editing program of your choice. And it does have to be an additional program, because currently you can only shoot raw photos on iPhone 12 by using third-party apps.

That changes with iOS 14.3. iPhone 12 Max and 12 Pro Max users can open up their camera settings and enable the Apple ProRaw format. This is disabled by default, a wise move by Apple. As stated before, JPEG photos take up little space; raw (and ProRaw, by extension) photos take up noticeably more. 

This is because of the flexibility of Apple's ProRaw format. It works on all four of the iPhone's cameras, plus Night Mode, and it can be converted by MacOS devices, iOS devices, and third-party apps. They can be edited to your heart's content in the Photos app, with additional support coming to apps like Adobe Lightroom in the future – it is a new image format, after all. 

Once the ProRaw format is activated, you'll have the option to take ProRaw photos anytime by toggling it in the Camera app. Photos in the ProRaw format will be tagged as such in your camera roll, so you'll know which ones are open for edits or taking up more of your storage. 

The option is new for iOS 14.3 beta participants, so we don't know when iPhone 12 Max and 12 Pro Max users will be able to try it out en masse. Technically, ProRaw may not even make it into the official 14.3 release, perhaps holding off until a later version. Whenever it does arrive, it'll bring a new level of possibility for iPhone 12 photo-takers. 

Source: CNet