Samsung and Google should steal this old LG camera feature
Hadlee Simons/Android Authority
It’s a shame that LG left the smartphone industry, as the company has always had a reputation for trying new and original things. This was especially true in the camera space, as it debuted features like ultra-wide cameras, manual video modes, and flexible triple rear cameras.
However, there is an underrated LG camera feature that deserves some love and should be copied by other smartphone makers. We’re talking about LG’s Graphy feature.
A more accessible manual mode
Have you ever seen a great photo and wondered what camera settings were used to capture it? That’s what LG’s Graphy feature, introduced in 2017, lets you easily copy the exact camera settings of a specific photo.
All you had to do was launch the LG camera app, switch to manual mode, then choose the Graphy button to apply settings from one of the many photo/templates. There was also a “plus” icon, allowing you to add specific shots from the Graphy app to your camera app as a template.
LG’s Graphy was a simpler manual mode that copied settings from existing photos.
Although you couldn’t use your own images, the Graphy app still had plenty of photos from various photographers. These shots included daytime cityscapes, moody interior scenes, neon-lit environments, and more.
Settings applied from a Graphy model ranged from white balance to ISO, exposure and shutter speed. Check out some examples we took below, showing the difference between the different models.
This is far from a perfect solution, as you will still need to fine-tune the settings for your specific scene. Nevertheless, the Graphy approach was a great way to learn how to use the manual mode of a phone. For what it’s worth, I didn’t change the settings in the sample photos above.
Use Graphy today
Hadlee Simons/Android Authority
Unfortunately for smartphone photography enthusiasts, LG’s Graphy feature is now only a shadow of its former self when using phones like the LG V60. It’s unclear when this happened, but Graphy integration was severely hampered here.
Simply put, you cannot add new Graphy photos/templates to your camera app, while the Graphy app itself is basically broken. Specifically, the app only displays a limited number of photos and you cannot tap on them to view or apply the relevant settings.
We’d love to see other smartphone brands integrate LG’s original Graphy functionality into their manual modes.
You can still use 16 pre-installed templates in the V60’s camera app (eg Night Sky, Cafe, Dayscape), but the new templates are the cornerstone of a feature like this. If there’s any consolation, LG’s manual mode still offers adjustment guidance just like other OEM’s camera apps. So you can try one of these default templates and then adjust the settings from here.
We’d love to see Google, Samsung, Xiaomi, Motorola and others offer their own Graphy-like functionality, as it was a really innovative way to learn and use manual camera modes. It also brought a refreshing change from the AI mode grip we see on many modern phones today.
There’s still room for improvements in the future, like the ability to use your own photos and export or import more settings so you can share them with other photographers. We therefore hope that another OEM will take over from Graphy in the future.