You need to be an expert in order to make use full use of your smartphone being it is Android or iPhone. Smartphones have lot of hidden features and camera is one of the smartphone features most of us not use properly. Generally all of us use smartphones for taking pictures and sharing on social media. In addition, some people also edit photos using photo-editing apps before using. However, there are plenty of other uses for smartphone cameras than merely capturing images or videos.
Related: How to track flights with iPhone?
7 Hidden Functions of Smartphone Camera You Should Know
Here are few things you can do with smartphone’s camera in addition to taking pictures and recording videos.
- Solve math problems
- Use as translator
- Use as scanner
- Scan and pay
- Scan QR codes
- Do visual search
- Product search and barcode scanning
1. Solve Math Problems
Resolving simple mathematical problems is a pain for many of us, though we study math from childhood. Even if you have a calculator app, it is not possible to resolve arithmetical equations. Photomath is a fun and useful app for solving math equations using your smartphone’s camera.
- Simply scan your math problems to get help from the app.
- Scribble down simple addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems to get solutions.
- It could also tackle complex equations.
- Instead of giving only answers, Photomath also shows the steps, so you can learn the step-by-step solution to your problems.
In summary, Photomath is a good education tool for many students using smartphone’s camera. It is a free app available for both Android and Apple App Store.
2. Translate Content
English is a global language, however, there are many countries where you can’t communicate with English. The Google Translate app has a useful feature to translate written text on signs, books, brochures and food menu. This feature works with dozens of different languages. Tap the camera icon on the Google Translate app and point at the text you want to translate. The text on the smartphone screen will magically transform into your native language. This will turn you into a more confident traveller, because it’s often a trouble just to ask locals about what a sign means, because they may not know English. The camera-based translation feature is available for both Android and iOS.
If Google Translate app is not available, check out the local apps like WeChat in China for scanning and translating the content.
3. Scan and Pay
Integrating payment micro gateway with the app is becoming popular. For example, WeChat app has a payment gateway that will help you to scan the QR code on the shops. You can directly use the “Scan” option to open camera and scan the QR code to pay to the vendors.
It is also possible to open your payment code and show to the vendor’s scanning machine for automatically detecting the amount form the app balance.
4. Add Friends with QR Code Scan
Instant messaging apps like WeChat have a QR code for each user’s account. You can show your QR code to your friend for adding you. Alternatively, scan your friend’s code to add them as your contact list.
5. Use as Scanner
Gone are the days to use scanning machines for getting soft copy of the documents. Nowadays, you can simply use your smartphone’s camera to scan the documents. Apple’s native apps like Notes can help you to open camera and scan the documents. However, you can also use any third party apps like CamScanner to have more options.
6. Visual Search Engine
With visual search engine, you can use images to search for information and not words. This feature is available for both iOS and Android devices. You may download a visual search engine app and snap a photo with it. The app will analyze the picture and it will come up with keywords that may identify objects in the picture. It’s useful for knowing the name of a dish, exotic animal and other objects that you don’t know about.
For example, you can use visual search apps like Camfind to get the details of the picture. Though you may not get correct details for unknown images, there are good possibilities to get accurate details for known landmarks.
7. Product Search and Barcode Scanning
Amazon is the leading online store that offers multiple categories of items. You can find almost all consumer goods in Amazon for online purchase. If you shop in Amazon often, you should have a mobile shopping app installed. When you tap the camera icon next to search box, you have the option to scan a barcode or search a product by snapping a photo. You can also scan the shipping label of the Amazon box to know you know what’s inside.
Similar to Amazon app, eBay app also has the image search feature. The app will enable your camera and you may snap a picture of the object to search products. The eBay app will search the current auction listings and find the best matches. EBay image search has acceptable accuracy and you may test with random images to check the results. It’s a great feature if you can’t get enough results for text keywords you use.
Camera is getting more important component on any smartphone due to the ease of use. Try to get full use of the camera instead of only using it for taking pictures and videos.