Skype’s mobile app for iPhone and iPad devices has this week been updated to add a new background-blurring feature. Microsoft’s video and voice calling service now allows users to blur the background on video calls.
Background blur in Skype and Teams uses artificial intelligence (AI)—trained in human form detection—to keep you in focus during your call. This technology is also trained to detect your hair, hands, and arms, making a call with background blur just as relaxed and easy as a regular video call.
The feature allows users to blur their background, which comes in handy if you’re in a public place, you don’t want participants to see private information that could be written on a whiteboard in your office, or want them to see that sock hanging on the head of your bed if you do your video conferencing form your bedroom.
The results are somewhat like the “bokeh” effect used in iPhone portrait photos as well as other photo apps. However, all blurring is done on the fly, since its live video.
The feature, which has been available on the desktop version of Skype, can be enabled in Skype’s settings or when in a call with the “Blur my background” option.