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Microsoft reveals new features in Windows Phone 8: screenshots, updated camera app

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Microsoft reveals never-before-seen features of Windows Phone 8 during Nokia's Lumia 920 announcement.

Microsoft's Joe Belfiore with the Nokia Lumia 920
Microsoft's Joe Belfiore with the Nokia Lumia 920

Microsoft provided us with a good look at Windows Phone 8 earlier this year, but today the company is showing off some new features coming to the platform during Nokia's big Lumia 920 announcement. One of the new features is the ability to capture screenshots, something us device reviewers have been wanting in the Windows Phone platform for some time. It had been rumored earlier this year that screenshot capabilities were coming with Windows Phone 8, but this is the first official mention of the feature by Microsoft.

Additionally, Microsoft showed off a revamped camera app with new pinch-to-zoom features, "lens applications" for instant effects, and a built-in panoramic setting using Microsoft's PhotoSynth technology. The camera app also features a burst mode that will lt users choose the best picture from a series of snaps. We can be sure that Nokia will take full advantage of these new camera features in the Lumia 920 and its PureView camera technology.

Microsoft demonstrated several different lens applications — many from third parties — but one of the most impressive was Smart Shoot, which can analyze moving objects and allow you to tap and remove them. Think of taking a photo of a famous monument with tourists swarming around — you can just tap to remove everything other than the monument. The second lens that got lots of attention is called Cinemagraph, which allows you to create partial animated images just like Cinemagram.

Dante D'Orazio contributed to this report.