Twitter is finally letting iOS users upload their Live Photos by turning them into GIFs. Announced in a tweet, hey specifically announced support for iOS Live Photos. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any indication of support for Pixel motion photos just yet.
Give the gift of GIFs. You can now upload your iOS Live Photos as GIFs anywhere you upload photos on Twitter. pic.twitter.com/D8TIfsBwyd
— Twitter (@Twitter) December 11, 2019
The Live Photos feature was first introduced way back in 2015 on the iPhone 6S. Live photos capture a few extra seconds of both picture and audio after you press the shutter button. This adds sound and movement to the photo which can be previewed by a hard press when accessed inside the gallery.
That said, the actual Live Photos format itself isn’t yet supported. Twitter, instead, will convert them into playable GIFs. Should you not want the photo transferred into a GIF, there will be an option to upload the Live Photo as a static JPEG, all of which can be done natively in the Twitter app.
The added support for this feature, while certainly useful, is quite a late move on Twitter’s part. In the same year that the Live Photo feature was released, both Tumblr and Facebook were able to add support for it and they began to allow users to upload their Live Photo captures. In 2016, Google’s iOS app offered a different solution by turning these Live Photos into GIFs, and by 2017 Apple found a way to embed Live Photos on any website.
The support for Live Photos is coupled with a number of other changes Twitter has made to help better handle their images. For one, uploaded images will no longer be transcoded and will instead have its JPEG encoding persevered. Transcoded images more often than not resulted in lower quality photos but with JPEG encoding preservation, users will be able to upload and maintain the quality of their images even if it’s a high-resolution photo.
We will still enforce limits, so images are not unbounded in file size or resolution, but those limits are very generous so that pretty much any 8 megapixel photo will be preserved and even up to 16 megapixels can be preserved (in square aspect ratio)
— Nolan O'Brien (@NolanOBrien) December 11, 2019