Google Pixel 2 front/selfie camera doesn’t let you access Portrait mode out of the box
Portrait mode (blurring the background in images to focus on the person/object in foreground), is one of the most hyped features of Google’s new Pixel 2 smartphones. But did you know that, out of the box, the phone doesn’t allow you to access the feature while taking selfies. Quite unexpected, right? Sadly, it’s true.
Recently, we stumbled upon a thread on the official Pixel User Community where several Pixel 2 owners are sharing that the Portrait mode isn’t available on their devices while using the front camera. With so many users chiming in, we thought of digging deep, and were amazed to find multiple Pixel 2 users complaining about the same on Reddit and XDA as well.
Those who have experienced the problem say that on selecting Portrait mode to capture a selfie, the camera app automatically switches from front facing camera to the rear one, effectively making it impossible to capture portrait selfies.
Further investigation revealed that it’s a software issue, related to the default camera app – Google Camera. Turned out, the new Pixel 2 smartphones are shipping with an old version of the app, which doesn’t support portrait selfies.
So it’s just a matter of updating the app, right? Yes, but the process has been frustrating for many. Read on.
When affected users were suggested to update to the latest version of Google Camera app, some users stressed that there was no update available on Google Play. In fact, the link (shared by one of the experts at the Pixel forum) to update to the app’s latest version notified that the new version isn’t available in their countries, as can be seen in the following user-shared screenshot.
Today, Google finally addressed the issue, acknowledging the fact that Pixel 2 users will have to update their Google Camera app – from version 5.1.009 to 5.1.014 – to enable Portrait mode while capturing selfies . The company also revealed there is some glitch with Google Play due to which the latest version of Google Camera isn’t available to all yet.
Here’s what Google employee Orrin (who is also the Community Manager at Pixel User Community) said:
Till the time Google resolves the issue with Google Play, the only workaround is to update the Camera app from APK Mirror. Rest, we suggest you keep a tab here for all future developments related to Google Camera’s Portrait mode issue.