Until recently, I carried an iPhone 6 and was quite sure that Live Photos were basically a gimmick in sheep’s clothing. I saw them taken by other people or in Apple’s advertising and thought, “Meh. That’s neat, but it’s like 3D in movies—gimmicky and superfluous.”Recently, I upgraded to an iPhone 7 Plus, and I’m here to tell you, I’m a Live Photo convert. If you have kids, pets, or both, Live Photos were made for you. Even if you don’t, moving landscape shots with a river, waterfall, or a train rolling by become something entirely different. Three seconds of video doesn’t sound like a lot, but those few seconds add an infinite amount of context. It brings the sounds and motion of the moment into the picture, capturing a piece of the past exactly as it unfolded.
Clearly I’m late to the game, since Live Photos started with the 6S line of iPhones, but there are still a number of people in the Apple ecosystem who have upgraded to neither the 6S nor the 7 yet, and for them, Live Photos will be another “new” feature to enjoy.
With Live Photos, Apple did what it’s best at doing—adding human emotion into technology. Live Photos aren’t about the pixels or the stitched-together video/photo/video constructs; they’re about bringing a smile to your face when you recall the moment that the sights and sounds of a Live Photo captured. They’re about the life outside your phone at a time when so much of your day is spent inside it.
For that, Live Photos are amazing. You just need to experience it for yourself.