iOS Portrait Mode not enough? Focos is a free app for customizing that blur

focos dual lens iphone app
Focos / App Store

The Portrait Mode on dual-camera iPhones brought that DSLR-like background blur to smartphones but there is a whole lot more you can do with two lenses. Focos is a free iOS app for dual- camera iPhones, including the 7 Plus, 8 Plus and X, that expands that Portrait Mode with custom effects and even the ability to refocus the shot after you take it. The app launched on Tuesday, October 31.

Developer by Xiaodong Wang, the same developer that created MaxCurve and Colorburn, Focos takes the data from those two separate lenses and gives iPhone users more than just some background blur. The tool works with existing photos shot through the native camera app’s portrait mode, along with offering a camera in the app itself for more features.

The app allows users to customize the look of that bokeh, including a dozen different shapes to turn out-of-focus light into besides just a circle, an effect similar to a DIY method of cutting out a shape and placing it over a DSLR lens. Along with giving that bokeh some shape, photographers can choose to create a swirly bokeh instead, imitating another technique that can also be created with the right DSLR lens, along with more choices like “creamy” and “bilinear.”

While the customizable depth-of-field is nice on its own, the depth map opens more possibilities inside of Focos. The app also allows photographers to adjust the focus after the fact thanks to that depth map. A bad focus is one of the factors that traditionally cannot be edited with software, but recent techniques to over capture the scene at multiple focal points brings the feature outside of light field cameras, including several Panasonic cameras. Apple themselves patented the feature back in 2015 but have not integrated the option into the native camera app.

The depth information from those two lenses also opens up new filters in Focos, including weather-themed options to make it look like the image was shot in the rain, snow or fog. The app also integrates video tutorials to show users how to access all those features.

Focos is now available as a free download from the App Store for dual-camera devices with iOS 11 or later.