Android 13 is here with a minor changelog that focuses, for now, on developers. And there is an application which appeared by surprise in this first version intended for the developers: Camera Obfuscator makes it possible to hide most of the information on the photos.

With the arrival of Android 13, we are gradually analyzing what this version of the operating system brings. It’s not that too much time has passed since the release of another key version in testing, Android 12L, so news for the user is scarce. Of course, there’s an app that suddenly appeared on our Pixel and immediately caught our attention: Camera Obfuscator. Let’s see what he does.

An application that removes a large part of the private trace of photos

Camera Obfuscator on the Google Pixel 6

It’s not that there are too many changes visible to the naked eye in Android 13. In fact, the biggest novelty focuses on the code and APIs that developers should use with their apps. Although yes, Google seems to have missed an application that, in principle, is used internally.

Camera Obfuscator offers a somewhat strange aspect for a Google application: its textual interface anticipates that it is not suitable for majority use. As they point out in Android Police, it’s highly likely that this newcomer to Android 13 is a test feature that Google’s own developers are using internally. However, it is perfectly functional.

The app offers two ways to work: attach images from the app itself (with the “+” in the lower right corner) or use it as a bridge using Android’s share menu. The result is the same in both cases: Camera Obfuscator cleans the image file of most of the Exif data that cameras leave with each shot.

On the left, image without obfuscation. Right, obscured image

With Camera Obfuscator, photos are brightened, camera information and other private data are removed. What remains, at least according to our tests, is location. This seems quite strange to us because putting shared images on the card poses a serious privacy risk.

Camera Obfuscator removes Exif data of camera model, shooting conditions and other user related. In addition, it lightens the image: it reduces its weight by 70%, as well as its dimensions

Camera Obfuscator appeared on the Google Pixel 6 after updating to the first Android 13 Developers Preview, but it doesn’t seem to appear on the rest of the Pixels compatible with this DP1 (not even the Google Pixel Pro). Maybe Google will integrate it into the system once it updates Android 13 to beta and stable.

Through | AndroidPolice