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Lightroom can now shoot RAW photos on Android

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Adobe brings feature parity with Lightroom for iOS

Lightroom for Android is getting a big update today that adds in features like split toning and haze removal that were added to iOS last year. The real purpose of this update is bringing Lightroom's Android app up to date with its iOS app — Adobe say that for the most part, everything should be there — but it actually moves ahead of iOS in one interesting regard: it can now be used as a camera app that shoots RAW photos (in Adobe's DNG format, specifically). This won't work on every phone, but there's a good chance you'll be able to use it on any recent Android device. Google began allowing Android phones to shoot RAW with Lollipop, and many since then have allowed it. The iPhone, on the other hand, doesn't allow camera apps to save RAW files, so Adobe can't add this feature on iOS.

RAW files allow photographers to do a lot more with their photos after they've been shot. Because they haven't been compressed at all, an editor like Lightroom is able to work with the full data set given to the sensor, creating a lot more flexibility in how an image can be edited. The downside is that RAW files typically take up a lot more space than JPEGs. So even though they're better to have around, they aren't something you'll want — or even be able — to shoot nonstop on mobile. Still, it's a good feature to have for mobile photographers, especially when you're trying to get a lot more out of a scene than what the default camera app is likely to give you.

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Image credit:Adobe.