Google has announced that it has activated the hidden Pixel Visual Core image processor in the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. The Pixel Visual Core will not only improve the camera performance of Google’s phones, but it will also improve photos taken with third-party camera apps.

The Pixel Visual Core is Google’s very first custom-designed System on Chip (SoC) that’s dedicated to handling image processing when taking photos with the Pixel 2 smartphones. It also speeds up the HDR+ feature on Google’s flagship phones. More importantly, the Pixel Visual Core will also work with third-party apps like Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat and Facebook, according to TechCrunch.

Image Comparison (L) Image without HDR+ and the Pixel Visual Core. (R) Image With HDR+ and Pixel Visual Core. Photo: Google

“Today we’re turning on Pixel Visual Core for Pixel 2 users—a custom designed co-processor for Pixel 2. Using computational photography and machine learning (which powers Pixel’s HDR+ technology), Pixel Visual Core improves image quality in apps that take photos,” Google said on its blog.

“This means it’ll be easier to shoot and share amazing photos on Instagram, WhatsApp, and Snapchat, along with many other apps which use the Pixel 2 camera. All you need to do is take the photo and Pixel 2 will do the rest. Your photos will be bright, detailed, and clear.”

Image Comparison (L) Image without HDR+ and the Pixel Visual Core. (R) Image With HDR+ and Pixel Visual Core. Photo: Google

Google shared a few sample photos showing the difference between photos taken with the Visual Core activated and photos taken without it. It seems like it’s able to make photos brighter and clearer without introducing much digital noise to images. Google says that the Pixel Visual Core does most of the “heavy-lifting” when processing images while still using less power.

Like the HDR+ camera feature in the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, the Pixel Visual Core runs RAISR, which makes sure that images stay sharp and more detailed even when users zoom-in on photos. The company claims that the Pixel Visual Core is able to do all of these image processing without any shutter lag, which means that users will always be able to capture the right moment every time they press the shutter button.

The activation of the Pixel Visual Core is already on the way for Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL users. All they have to do is to make sure that they receive and download Google’s monthly software update which will become available in the “next few days.” Google hasn’t made any announcements on whether it plans on bringing this technology to other Android phones.