The built-in ChromeOS camera app has come a long way over the past few years. Sadly, camera hardware on Chromebooks has lagged behind but that’s finally changing thanks to premium devices with solid shooters and third-party support for PTZ webcams. In an effort to keep pushing the ChromeOS camera app forward, Google continues to update and add features that make the application more useful for a variety of uses.
Recent updates include the ability to utilize the PTZ(pan, tilt, zoom) features on compatible webcams like the Poly Studio P5 which I happen to use on my desk setup and the cool ability to create 5-second animate GIFs directly from the camera app. You can also use your Chromebooks camera app to scan documents and of course, take pictures. There’s even a timer function so you can give yourself time to get into your shot.
The latest addition to the ChromeOS camera app just popped up in the Canary Channel and it’s going to add an entirely new dimension of usefulness to Chromebooks, in general. First spotted by Chrome Story in the Chromium repository, the camera app in Canary now has an option to create time lapse videos. The time lapse tool appears under the video tab of the camera app right next to the GIF function and does exactly what you’d expect it to do – creates a time lapse video. Time lapse is already working in the Canary Channel and even worked with my external webcam.
With ChromeOS tablets and dual camera Chromebooks becoming more prevalent, the ability to take time lapse photos without having to set up a rig to hold your phone could be very useful. I imagine that students could find this feature useful for a variety of applications and content creators will surely find time lapse handy for documenting lengthy projects. Stay tuned as this feature evolves and we’ll let you know when it makes its way to the Stable Channel ChromeOS.