Google Photos is beginning to introduce new Real Tone filters this week, Google announced. The new filters are rolling out on Android, iOS and the web and can be accessed in the ‘Filters’ tab in Google Photos’ image editor. The company says the new Real Tone filters were designed by “professional image makers” to accurately represent various skin tones in photos.
“These filters were designed by professional image makers to work well across skin tones, so you can choose the filter that reflects your style,” the company said in a tweet about the launch.
A screenshot tweeted by Google shows that among the Real Tone filters are “Playa,” “Honey,” “Isla” and “Desert.” The screenshot also shows that once you select a Real Tone filter, you’ll see a “Made with Real Tone” badge in the editing screen.
Google first introduced Real Tone for Pixel phones last year with the aim of making faces with all skin tones show up as well as possible in photos. Earlier this month, the company announced at its I/O developer conference that it was incorporating a 10-shade skin tone scale in several of its products over the coming months and that it planned to introduce a new set of Real Tone filters using the scale for Google Photos. These revamped Real Tone filters are now rolling out and are designed to work well across skin tones and evaluated using the MST Scale.
The 10-shade skin tone, which is called the Monk Skin Tone (MST) scale, is designed to be more inclusive of various skin tones. It was created in partnership with Harvard professor and sociologist Dr. Ellis Monk.
Google says the new approach and scale will help it to evaluate whether a product or feature works well across a range of skin tones. The company will continue to work with Dr. Monk to evaluate the MST Scale across different regions and product applications. Google outlines that the MST Scale is an important next step in improving skin tone inclusivity in technology and will help it make progress in its commitment to image equity and improving representation.
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