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Windows 11's Photos app adds support for motion photo, background blur, search
Quote:The Photos app in Windows 11 is gaining a handful of new features. The new options include background blur, search and motion photo.

Background Blur in Windows 11 Photos app

As the name suggests, Background Blur adds a bokeh effect in photos to highlight the subject, and blurs out the background.  This is similar to Portrait mode that has been popularized by Apple iPhone and Android devices. To use the new feature, open any picture that has a subject (people, animals, vehicles, etc.) in the Photos app. Click on the Edit button to access the built-in image editor, and select the Background Blur option on the toolbar.

[Image: Background-Blur-in-Photos-app-windows-11.jpg]

The Photos app will display an animation while it processes the photo. It uses the same "flashing / flowing border" animation that the new Text Actions option in the Snipping Tool does.

[Image: Microsoft-Photos-app-processes-background-blur.jpg]

When Photos finishes analyzing the image, it automatically applies the filter, with a 50% blur intensity.

[Image: Windows-11-Photos-app-preview-background-blur.jpg]

The edge detection is not perfect, as you can see in the image below. The Tiger's (image via Unsplash) whiskers and paws were blurred out. But it's not too bad for a user-friendly tool.

[Image: Testing-Background-Blur-in-Photos-App-Windows-11.jpg]

The Background Blur worked better with people. Let's get back to the other photo, I think the effect looks a lot better in the picture (via Unsplash), the app even managed to detect the backpack and preserved its clarity.

[Image: Background-Blur-effect-in-Photos-App-Windows-11.jpg]

Once the Photos app applies the background blur effect, the image editor gives you some manual controls, including a slider to set the blur intensity. The selection brush tool is a more powerful tool, as it lets you select or deselect areas in the image where the blur effect should be applied in. You can tweak the brush's size and softness per your requirements. For example, I could use it to adjust the brush size and deselect the area around the Tiger's whiskers to make the image look slightly better.
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