Taking photos with Chris’ new Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra phone – A Surprise Feature

My new phone arrived! Two days early. So exciting. Now if I could only get the box open!

 I did finally get the box open! Then I turned it on and followed the instructions to turn OFF my old Samsung/Verizon phone so that the new one (the S21 Ultra) could automatically activate. Amazing. I didn’t have to deal with the SIM card at all, it just did everything for me. After that, my Google Backup and the Samsung “Smart Switch” utility went to work transferring everything from my old phone to my new one.

Top of the Line Camera

OK, now let’s go have some fun with that camera! It has 4 – yes, four! Different lenses. Think of it like a digital SLR camera like my old Canon where I bought separate lenses for different purposes. With the Canon I had to detach one lens and attach another, it’s a bit of a process. And, I had to lug around all these lenses. With the Samsung S21 Ultra it’s all built in.

On the camera, you select the different lenses by tapping on the on the selection on the camera screen.

1. Ultra Wide 2. Normal wide 3. 3X Telephoto 4. 10X Telephoto

I found a pretty spot in our neighborhood where there was a sign and I got a ways away. I stood in one spot and took 4 photos, one with each of the different lens settings. You can’t even see the sign when I use the wide angle or the normal lens. With the 3X You can see that there is a sign there. With the 10X you can almost read the sign – and if you zoom in a bit with two fingers, you can clearly read it. WOW

Zooming in with your fingers, using the 10X lens. I felt like I was looking through binoculars!

Surprise! Samsung has an Object Eraser

I bought this phone because of the lenses. I knew that taking telephoto shots was going to be awesome. What I did not know is that the Samsung Gallery app has a feature called Object Eraser. I strongly considered getting the Google Pixel 6 instead of the Samsung, and one of the reasons is the Google Photos feature called “Magic Eraser” which is only available on the Pixel 6.

I usually do not use the Gallery app that comes with Samsung phones because I use Google Photos instead. But I do open it up and take a look around, saw an option called “Object Eraser” and asked myself, “What does this button do?” And, look what I found!

I used the “Object Eraser” feature in the Samsung Gallery to erase the people in the background.

So, how easy is it? Pretty darned easy! All you do is

  • Open the photo using the Samsung Gallery app
  • Tap the edit button (pencil icon)
  • Tap the 3-dot menu and choose Object eraser
  • Then you just touch the object you want erased – I touched the first person, then I touched the second person. It figured out where the outlines of each person was.
  • I touched the “Erase” button, then Done
Notice how the people look highlighted in purple. All I did to make that happen was to touch them.

7 replies on “Taking photos with Chris’ new Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra phone – A Surprise Feature”

  1. Glad you’re enjoying the new phone. For me, though, I still like using my Canon. So much control. Funny about getting it out of the box. My troubles are with getting batteries and razor blades out of the containers. Always wide up mutilating the packaging. Keith

  2. Great find, Chris! Just a minor issue … it appears that the Object Eraser is not turned on by default (at least it wasn’t on my S21 Ultra, here in Aus)

    You activate it the first time by going gallery > edit > options (three dots) > labs > then turn on Object Eraser.

    Then it stays activated, but in my case you have to swipe the bottom toolbar to the left – since it, and the text “T” don’t appear at first.

    • Good to know Graham! I don’t remember doing anything to turn it on, but I guess I could have as I pushed all the different buttons! Or – I wonder if I have an update that you don’t?

    • Graham,
      I received the S21 Ultra as my work phone about 2 weeks ago. I believe the latest version of the phone, which includes software updates, requires the procedure Chris describes and what also works on my phone. I have a friend who purchased the S21 Ultra earlier this year and he had to go through “labs” as you describe, to turn on the feature.

  3. I’ll either get that phone or i’ll get the s21 plus. I can get the plus 300 or more under the price of the ultra. You really have alto to learn about what the camera can do. I’ve seen many videos on it and it’s truly amazing what all it can do when you take a picture or a video. Nice shots you added to show what you learned so far. the eraser is amazing unless you try to remove an object that has a shadow coming from it. it removes the object but not the shadow.

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