How to blur image background in Photos for Windows 11

The Photos app for Windows 11 now is capable of blurring backgrounds, and here's how to use the feature.

Windows 11 Photos background blur
Windows 11 Photos background blur

On Windows 11, the Photos app now supports background blur for images, and in this guide, you will learn the steps to use the feature.

The background blur feature in the Photos app makes the subject on the photo stand out, similar to the picture taken with your phone using portrait mode. The option is available when editing an image, and it detects the subject and finds the background automatically. You also get settings to adjust the intensity of the blur or brush tools to modify the area being blurred.

This guide will teach you the steps to blur the background of images in the latest update of the Photos app for Windows 11.

Blur image background with Photos for Windows 11

To blur the background of an image in the Photos app, use these steps:

  1. Open Photos on Windows 11.

  2. Open the pictures to edit with background blur.

  3. Click the Edit image (Ctrl + E) option.

    Photos app edit image

  4. Click the Background blur tool in the command bar.

  5. Use the slider to control the blur intensity.

    Blur background on image

  6. (Optional) Turn on the “Selection brush tool” toggle switch.

  7. Use the sliders to change the brush size and softness.

    Background blur manual selection

  8. Use the brush to select the area to modify the blur to your preferences.

  9. Click the Apply button.

Once you complete the steps, the background of the image will now include a blur similar to a portrait photo taken on your phone.

At the time of this writing, Microsoft is still testing this feature in the latest preview of the Photos app, and it’s only available for devices enrolled in the Dev and Canary Channels of the Windows Insider Program.

In addition, the development team is also working on search enhancements that will allow you to search photos stored in OneDrive (home or personal) accounts using keywords based on the content of the photo, such as beach, car, birthday, or vacation.

As part of the search changes, Photos now can find photos based on the location they were taken. This feature is available for pictures in your collection, including those stored in file systems, OneDrive, and iCloud.

Furthermore, the Photos app also supports photos with motion for Google and Samsung devices, meaning you can now view images with motion preview if the feature is already enabled in Android.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].