New Apple API Opens Live Photo Functionality to Third Parties

Apple recently introduced a new JavaScript-based API that allows developers to embed Live Photos into websites. The Live Photos API brings a new experience to embedded photos as Live Photos include movement and sound. Apple had previously included Live Photo capabilities on both iOS and macOS, and the new API will allow developers to expand the functionality to third party apps and sites.

To help developers get started, Apple created an example app using the Photos Framework. Further, Apple provided a Live Photo editing video instructional originally presented at WWDC 2016. SDKs that support Live Photos are within Xcode.

To use, developers need utilize the LivePhotosKit JS Library. Within the player, the JavaScript API presents as a DOM element (similar to an image or video tag). The element can then be configured with photo, video, and other options. Playback can be controlled programmatically, by the developer, or through controls provided to the end-user. For more information, check out the API reference.

Apple's latest API is not the first move towards integrating Apple Live Photos with third party apps. Tumblr began supporting Apple Live Photos last year. While Tumblr included a somewhat hacked together tool to help developers embed Live Photos, Apple now bypasses the need for such developer gymnastics with an API direct to Live Photos and associated editing tools. Checkout the Live Photos for Developers site to learn more.

Be sure to read the next Photos article: Unsplash API Now Completely Open and Free