The iPhone XS and XS Max have a new Portrait Mode feature that lets you adjust the depth of field on the fly. iOS 12.1 is about to make it even better.
The next software update, which is rolling out to the public later this year and available to try in public beta now, brings a live preview with a slider tool that lets you sharpen or blur the background in real time. This is similar to the Live Focus feature in Samsung’s latest phones, such as the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9, and it works quite well.
Currently, you have to shoot an iPhone XS photo in Portrait Mode and then tap Edit to adjust the bokeh effect. It’s pretty cool, but being able to do it before shooting is even more convenient.
It’s unlikely this feature will make it to other phones that can shoot in Portrait Mode, given that the adjustable depth of field feature is only available on the XS and XS Max.
To take the new feature for a spin, install the iOS 12.1 public beta.