Lumia Cyan update said to improve low-light performace on Lumia Icon, 1520 and 930

In an ongoing Q&A from Nokia's camera gurus, Juha Alakarhu and Eero Salmelin, who are now with Microsoft, information regarding what users should expect from the Lumia Cyan update has been revealed. The question answered dealt with photography, and specifically Nokia's latest high end Windows Phones, including the Verizon Lumia Icon, Lumia 930 and Lumia 1520.

Juha Alakarhu took to the query and revealed precisely what would be improved with the forthcoming firmware refresh, bundled with the Windows Phone 8.1 update.

Lumia Cyan camera advances

  • Much better low light performance
  • Better colors
  • Continuous auto-focus
  • Better video quality
  • And even the RAW (DNG) images will look better because we are using the sensor in more clever way

Low light performance has been a source of criticism for some Lumia 1520 users, especially when it comes to video. At least according to Alakarhu, reducing noise and refining clarity will be one of the principal features of the Lumia Cyan update.

Likewise, better colors and enhanced video quality will be welcomed too as Alakarhu and his team refine the camera on their latest PureView devices. Continuous auto-focus, as opposed to the single tap version currently used, should greatly boost speed and make snapping photos easier for moving objects.

Speaking of speed, Salmelin answered a question about the speed of the Nokia Camera app and Lumia Cyan, noting "We improved the shot to shot time somewhat in the new camera application which will be part of Cyan update." It's not clear how much of a difference it will make, but it sounds like it will at least be better.

In regards to PureView technology and the recent Microsoft acquisition of the Nokia devices team, Salmelin remarked, "The whole team that developed the PureView technology is now part of Microsoft and continuing to work hard to develop the technology further."

Finally, Alakarhu hinted that direct RAW editing on the device itself may be forthcoming, observing "Its an interesting idea. Thanks :)" It's not clear if such editing would be in a new separate app, or part of the upcoming Creative Studio 6.0 overhaul that was detailed by Nokia a few weeks ago.

The Lumia Cyan update is Nokia's latest firmware for their Lumia line of smartphones. It optimizes hardware for Windows Phone 8.1 and will be co-bundled with individual updates starting in a few weeks. It follows the Lumia Black and Amber updates from previous OS releases.

Source: Conversations

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.