iPhone Glitch Gives Bride a Mirror-Image Makeover, Here’s Everything You Need To Know

U.K. woman's wedding dress fiasco unveils Apple's computational photography glitch.

Highlights
  • Computational photography redefines how we capture images, turning a simple tap into a quick masterpiece of saturation, contrast, and more.
  • A U.K. comedian and actor named Tessa Coates took a photo in front of a couple of mirrors, and was shocked by the results.
  • The photo shows the woman in front of two mirrors, but the shocking part is that each of the three versions of her had a different pose.
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Today, the meaning of photography has changed significantly, thanks to computational photography which has become a vogue. A simple tap on our glass slab generates a host of processes in the background, and in a fraction of a second, the phone gives us the photograph with a balanced mixture of saturation, contrast, and other aspects. Today, smartphones are capable of generating compelling-looking images. However, since the image processing is being done via algorithms, it is not surprising to see that the machine gets confused, too.

Recently, an incident happened in the U.K. where a woman took a photo of herself on her iPhone and was completely blown away by the results. As it was completely different from reality. Here’s the whole incident.

What Happened?

iphone image

A U.K. comedian and actor named Tessa Coates was trying on her wedding dresses while she took a photo in front of a couple of mirrors. The picture shows the woman in front of two mirrors, but the shocking part is that each of the three versions of her had a different pose.

The camera app on her iPhone was not in ‘Live Mode’, nor was the photo taken in burst mode. It was just a regular photo taken on the iPhone.

Tessa Coates stated on her Instagram – “I looked at the photo, and I had a full panic attack in the street.”

So What Went Wrong?

In her quest for answers, Coates headed to the Apple Store, where technician named Roger unfolded the mystery, stating, “An iPhone is not a camera; it’s a computer.”

According to Roger, the iPhone swiftly captures a series of burst images, even in a single click, as it evaluates the scene. Coates unknowingly altered her pose during this rapid-fire process, resulting in the fusion of contrasting images into a single frame. The iPhone assumed that there were three people and not one person with her reflections in the mirrors, and hence it showed three people with different poses.

While discussing the incident, Roger revealed that such anomalies are rare and labelled the glitch in the wedding dress shop as a “one in a million” occurrence. Interestingly, he also hinted at Apple beta-testing a feature akin to Google Pixel 8’s multiple photo capture and selection mechanism.

Decoding the iPhone’s Oops Moment

The unexpected wedding dress shop debacle involving Tessa Coates and her iPhone’s camera can be traced back to a phenomenon known as the rolling shutter. Unlike traditional cameras that capture an entire scene at once, smartphone cameras often use a rolling shutter mechanism. When you click a photo on your iPhone, it doesn’t snap the entire picture in an instant. Instead, it captures the image by scanning across the scene, from left to right or top to bottom, in a very rapid sequence.

Credit: Spartan2470

Now, imagine Coates trying on wedding dresses, and her iPhone is busy scanning while she’s doing her thing. As she moves, the scanning catches different bits of her pose at different times, like taking little snapshots that end up in one photo. It’s not a glitch; it’s just the iPhone doing its scan-and-click routine, turning her dress fitting into a mix-and-match photo adventure.