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Five More Useful Things in the Cloud-based Lightroom Mobile App

My post from last week generated a few questions, so I thought I’d follow up with some answers and some more tips.

Exposure Lock

When faced with a tricky exposure situation and you want to ensure the camera doesn’t change its exposure settings due to changing light (like on a partly cloudy day) you can frame up your photo, tap on the subject to set exposure, then tap the exposure lock icon (the lock to the right of the shutter button) to lock in your settings. The camera will hold those settings until the exposure lock icon is tapped a second time. You can still dial in exposure compensation while locked (swipe left or right).

In-Camera HDR Mode

One of my favorite features is the ability to shoot in HDR mode. This allows you to shoot in raw (DNG) and when you press the shutter button the camera takes three photos exposing for the highlights, shadows, and midtones, then automatically aligning and blending them into a single DNG photo with a much higher dynamic range than any single photo, but with all the benefits of a raw photo for editing purposes. You can even shoot handheld, so no tripod needed.

Use this mode when photographing a scene that has really bright highlights (such as clouds in the sky on a sunny day) and dark shadows (such as shaded areas on the ground). Not ideal for moving subjects, but don’t be afraid to experiment and see what is possible. I’ve been consistently impressed with this feature. Head over to the original announcement of this feature to see if your device is supported.

Switch Lenses

If you have a dual lens device you can switch between the wide and telephoto lenses by tapping the lens icon that appears to the left of the shutter button.

Take a Selfie

You can switch between the rear and forward-facing cameras on your device from within the camera app by tapping the camera icon in the upper-right corner of the interface. “Selfie” is also an option in the widget and 3D touch options I cover in the next section for faster access.

Camera Launch Shortcuts

Beyond tapping the blue camera icon in the app to open the camera, there are a few shortcuts to know when you want to open the camera quickly. These do vary with your operating system, so let’s look at iPhone first. If you have a device that supports 3D touch you can do a long-press on the Lr app icon to access a shortcut for jumping right to the camera.

Additionally, on iOS you can configure a Lightroom widget on the home screen that will allow you equally fast access to the camera. Head here to learn more about configuring widgets on iOS.

In a somewhat similar fashion on Android, you can add a Lightroom camera widget to the Home screen. Head here to learn more about adding widgets on Android.

Once configured you’ll be ready to capture anything that comes your way!



  1. Martin 30 August, 2019 at 08:30 Reply

    Hey how do you get these HDR, long exposure functions in lightroom mobile?

    I have lightroom installed on my Nokia 9 pureview and I can only see auto and pro! And I don’t have button where I can change lenses.

    • Rob Sylvan 30 August, 2019 at 10:55 Reply

      It must be something about that device that Lightroom doesn’t support those features on it. Perhaps as Lightroom updates it will provide better support for that phone’s unique features. Long exposure mode is a Tech Preview that has to be enabled in Lightroom mobile’s settings.

  2. marc labro 28 August, 2019 at 10:24 Reply

    just installing Lightroom classic on my new pc and activated SYNC.
    708 images from my iphone were synchronized, whose only 24 taken in dng with LR camera.
    other taken with standard iphone 8 camera in jpg or heic (error from me in setups ?).
    i didn’t ask that, no idea how it happened but also i thought it happened
    only when you use Lightroom camera, not with the iphone photo library.
    can you explain a little bit ?

    • Rob Sylvan 28 August, 2019 at 12:24 Reply

      When you first install the Lightroom app on your iPhone it will attempt to auto-import all photos on your camera roll by default. There is a little checkbox for auto import, and you’ve got to uncheck that to prevent it from importing the camera roll. So, it sounds like Lightroom automatically imported all photos on your camera roll. All photos imported into the Lightroom app are uploaded to the cloud at full resolution. Any full resolution photos in the cloud are automatically downloaded to the synced Lightroom Classic catalog.

      • marc labro 30 August, 2019 at 00:37 Reply

        Thank you Rob.
        This camera roll/cloud behaviour is not very well documented.

        Happy to see there is a reason that happened 🙂
        my iphone already had LR on it and was connected to previous pc.
        where is this checkbox ? in LR classic, LR CC or LR mobile ?
        do we have access to adobe cloud to see the pictures on it ?
        are they removed if i disable sync or remove from my iphone ?

        best regards

        • Rob Sylvan 30 August, 2019 at 10:57 Reply

          The option to sync Lightroom Classic to the cloud-based Lightroom is in Lightroom Classic’s Activity Monitor (hidden in the ID plate). You can see what is in the cloud by going to and logging in with the same Adobe ID/pass.

          • marc labro 31 August, 2019 at 02:16

            Hi Rob,
            yes, it is written “LR will sync photos which are in your sync collections” but I have no sync collections so i wonder how LR/adobe cloud know they must import all iphone photos.
            another strange thing :
            i have two iphone8/imported photos folders, one with 632 photos and other one with 33 photos and new photos go in one or the others. i thought for any reason it had created a new one and only the one with 33 photos would be updated.

            best regards

          • Rob Sylvan 31 August, 2019 at 09:22

            The iPhone photos were most likely imported via the Lightroom app on the phone. I have no way to know how, just seems like the most obvious scenario. If you go to Preferences > Lightroom Sync, you can control where the full resolution photos downloaded from the cloud are stored on your system, and you can move the photos out from under the iPhone8 folders into a place of your choosing.

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