Samsung India R&D team turns smartphone into a DSLR with ‘Expert RAW’

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As camera innovations in premium smartphones reach the next level, a team from Samsung R&D Institute India-Bangalore (SRI-B) has extensively worked on ‘Expert RAW’ feature on Galaxy S22 series — a comprehensive suite of in-camera editing tools that turn the camera into a DSLR-like experience.

Led by Girish Kulkarni, Head of the Camera Solutions Group, the SRI-B team has helped create a tool for professional photographers who were mostly using DSLR cameras but wanted to achieve a pro-grade experience with smartphones.

“Expert RAW is an epic leap forward for photography. It essentially places a professional studio in your pocket,” Kulkarni said in a statement on Thursday.

Expert RAW captures high-quality, high dynamic range pictures in the multi-frame RAW format that enables precise post-capture editing and professional results.

“With Expert RAW, people can capture much more information in a single picture — from dark details to bright highlights. It also drastically reduces noise and increases sharpness and detail,” Kulkarni informed.

The Expert RAW tool is compatible with the Galaxy S22 series and the Galaxy S21 Ultra.

According to Hamid Sheikh, Head of the Intelligent Imaging Team at Samsung Research America’s (SRA) Mobile Processor Innovation (MPI) Lab, to improve the overall camera experience, they worked closely with Adobe to tightly couple Expert RAW with ‘Lightroom’.

“The result is that photographers have full control over their creative experience. Novice photographers can also utilise automatic set points for camera controls, and then use the Samsung-specific default values in Lightroom,” Sheikh said.

The inspiration came from the confluence of user experience limitations and the leaps in computational and AI capabilities of today’s mobile processors.

“Expert RAW was born out of a desire to transform that inspiration into reality,” said Sheikh.

It was a complex R&D project, and SRI-B’s role was to think in terms of end-to-end for the best consumer experience.

“This required multi-domain expertise and deep collaboration among multiple teams. The multi-domain expertise and close collaboration with all key stakeholders helped SRI-B continuously focus on improving Expert RAW’s product experience, end-to-end pipeline, etc,” Kulkarni said.

The MPI Lab has been working closely with SRI-B at Samsung.

Going forward, the company will continue to strengthen collaborations that leverage the knowledge and capabilities of its world-class network of R&D centres.

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