Are your favourite photos those of candid moments that a keen observer managed to capture, rather than posed group portraits or selfies? If so, you’ll be glad to hear about one of Google’s latest releases, which aims to capture candid and natural moments using AI technology.

Google Clips is a camera that observes its environment from a 130-degree field of view and records moving images of seven seconds long when its attention is caught by something interesting. These moving images can be exported as movie files (albeit without sound, as Clips doesn’t have a microphone), JPEGs of specific still images, GIFs or motion photos.

How is Clips different from other digital cameras?

What makes Clips different from other cameras is that it uses AI to recognise faces – and even pets – to make sure that it captures the people you want it to capture. While some people may find this a little creepy, Google has taken measures to ensure the security of its users. For instance, Clips deliberately does not upload captured moving images to the cloud, and the facial recognition technology that is used is restricted to the device itself and doesn’t pair with any databases on Google Photos. Also, faces are not paired with names, but are simply recognised due to the frequency of them appearing in the environment where Clips is placed.

This means that, should you take Clips to the park with you to capture candid moments of your kids playing, it will specifically seek out your children when capturing images, and not the other kids in the park. According to Google, Clips can be used for three hours at a time, but that all depends on whether there is something worth capturing, as the AI capabilities of Clips will help it decide if that is the case.

It is equipped with a shutter button, but Clips can be differentiated from other digital cameras by the fact that machine learning ultimately determines what is captured, making for candid moments where users aren’t quite as aware that a camera is observing them. It has 16GB of storage space, uses a 12-megapixel sensor and transfers images and motion capturing over WiFi only when requested to do so.

Have a look.

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