The Essential PH-1 still lacks a decent camera app

Via 9to5Google:

The biggest problem everyone had with the Essential Phone at launch was its dual-camera. While the camera hardware was good, the software turned the shots it produced into digital dumpster fires. It was terrible, but it’s gotten much better. Part of that is thanks to Essential’s own work improving the camera app, but most of it is thanks to third-party developers.

Having just used an Essential phone up until a month or so ago, I have a slightly different take on the progress it’s made. Sure, the PH-1 come a long way since launch, but as the article only briefly mentions, to really get the most of the camera which, for me, is becoming the most essential part of every phone, you have to install a modded version of the Google Camera app, which isn’t even available on the Play Store.

This version, built for non-Pixel phones like the PH-1, still doesn’t deliver anywhere near the quality a device like this should in my opinion. In my experience with both the modified Google Camera and stock Camera app, I had horrendous amounts of lag while taking pictures and, on more than one occasion, the apps would just crash altogether. That said, even when it works, the quality seems to vary substantially from shot to shot, even in the same conditions.

The Essential PH-1 isn’t a bad phone. The hardware is gorgeous and most of the software continues to improve at a steady pace. It’ll check all the boxes for a lot of people but don’t let this article fool you: if a camera is at all important to you, I’d recommend looking elsewhere.

After ten years of Spider-Man, Dan Slott is writing Iron Man

Via Vulture:

I am going from the flagship character of the Marvel Comics of my youth to the gem of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The linchpin. I am going to Iron Man.


There will be a very unique cast in this book of characters: Iron Man characters you love and Marvel characters that you haven’t seen folded into the Iron Man cast.

Slott has had an incredible run on Amazing Spider-Man, both with some ups and some downs. He stepped in when the series was at it’s most fragile and was able to really make a go of it and deliver some classic Spidey stories along the way.

Best of luck to him on Iron Man, I hope he brings as fresh a take to the character as he did with Peter Parker back in 2008.

Now we’ll just have to see who takes over writing duties on Amazing Spider-Man…

Facebook says they’re finally cleaning up Messenger

Via 9to5Mac:

“Over the last two years, we built a lot of capabilities to find the features that continue to set us apart. A lot of them have found their product market fit; some haven’t. While we raced to build these new features, the app became too cluttered. Expect to see us invest in massively simplifying and streamlining Messenger this year.”

Thank god. Over the past couple years, between the ads, Messenger Day, bots, etc, the Messenger app has become a bloated mess.

Another observation from the comics I’ve been catching up on is that the new Captain America by Waid and Samnee is a blast. Haven’t had as much fun reading a Cap book in a long time.

It’s become very apparent that Joëlle Jones should be drawing Batman for the foreseeable future. I love her art.