Afraid of missing out on the latest photo industry news while you’re out, well, actually taking pictures? Photography News of the Week is all the news you might have missed this week, published on the weekends. Alongside the biggest stories of the week, like an Etch A Sketch camera and a selfie ban at the biggest single-dish radio telescope, find briefs on the latest in accessories and photography news from this week.
Instagram may stop showing users how many likes a photo has
Instagram posts may ditch the number of likes attached to them and may only share the numbers only with the original poster. In a test that’s not yet public, the bottom of the Instagram post simply reads “liked by [username] and others” without a number attached.
In a pop-up inside the reverse engineered app, Instagram says “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes our posts get.” Instagram confirmed that the feature is part of a prototype, but that it hasn’t yet moved out to public testing. Like any prototype, the feature may never roll out to users — or it may wind up in a future app update.
The Fujifilm X-T3 gains better autofocus via firmware
The Fujifilm X-T3 just got a performance boost without a price change, thanks to free firmware for the mirrorless camera. The update improves face and eye detection autofocus while adding the option to select a specific face when the camera detects multiple people. The autofocus system, in general, improves with enhanced speed for subjects that are “at a distance,” Fujifilm says.
Additional updates include a new double-tap shortcut on the touchscreen, improved autofocus, and auto exposure area tracking through the electronic viewfinder, new flicker reduction options, and other updates.
The Fujifilm X-T30 also has a minor update available, with the firmware 1.01 designed to prevent accidental presses of the quick menu button.
Explore some of the best images of the year from the Sony World Photography Awards
One of the largest photography contests in the world, the Sony Photography Awards, announced photojournalist Federico Borella as the Photographer of the Year. The Italian freelance photographer won the top prize for his series Five Degrees, which looks at the growing number of suicides in Tamil Nadu in southern India as the region faces a drought tied to climate change.
The contest also awarded U.S.-based photographer Christy Lee Rogers the Open Photographer of the Year title for an image called Harmony. Zelle Westfall of Atlanta won the Youth Photographer of the Year for a portrait celebrating diversity, while the contest recognized Sergi Villanueva as the Student Photographer of the Year and Nadav Kander for Outstanding Contribution to Photography. The contest also recognized winners in 10 different professional categories.
The full selection of winning images can be viewed online and will also be displayed at a London gallery this year.
Lexar announces winners for a new photography contest
Lexar, working with 500px, announced the winners of a new photography competition, the Lexar Global Photo Contest. The new contest saw 50,000 images submitted worldwide, with this year’s contest focusing on landscape photography.
Annie Fu won the top prize for her image, The Splendor of Bow Lake, along with Elendil for the image Gongga Quodis Arcana. The contest also awarded five photographers for best in show. The gallery of winning images can be viewed online.
Shutterstock uses augmented reality to ‘look before you license’
Shutterstock is now using augmented reality to preview wall art. View in Room, a feature on the stock agency’s iOS app, uses the camera phone to display what any of the 250 million images on Shutterstock would look like as wall art. The feature is a result of the company’s hackathon that encouraged employees to come up with new tools for the app.
PowerDVD now supports 8K and 64-bit 4K
What came first, the 8K media player or the 8K screen? This week, CyberLink launched PowerDVD 19, adding 8K support to the video playback software as 8K displays have only just begun to enter the mainstream. The update also expands 4K support to 64-bit for HDR content. Spatial audio for 360 video playback is also listed among the enhancements.
The software, which supports all major file formats as well as DVDs and Blu-ray, is now available starting at $45 for a one-year subscription.