Unlock the Wi-Fi - An Open Letter to Nikon

Unlock the Wi-Fi - An Open Letter to Nikon

Gunther Wegner, creator of the LRTimelapse software, reveals a major issue affecting all the latest Nikon cameras compatible with the SnapBridge wireless app. For some reason, the Nikon engineers linked the camera’s Wi-Fi feature to the use of the app. When switching to a third-party app, the SnapBridge-capable cameras disable Wi-Fi, completely making the use of third-party apps over Wi-Fi impossible. Hence, photographers who rely on specialized apps for their work such as time-lapse or macro photography are stuck and cannot use these cameras anymore.

The German software developer explains: “Technically, the standard Wi-Fi interface is also available in your new cameras with SnapBridge, and in principle it even would work with our specialized apps. Unfortunately, currently the cameras switch it off after a short time, as soon as the user switches from the SnapBridge app to another one. The only thing missing for us in your new cameras is the possibility to manually turn on Wi-Fi via the menu independently of the SnapBridge app!”

He continues: “This is my modest request: Please give us back the possibility to use Wi-Fi independently of SnapBridge! We would be really happy if you could provide a firmware update for the Nikon D500, D5600, and D7500 and a corresponding implementation in all upcoming cameras. The time-lapse community and all others who depend on an open Wi-Fi implementation will continue to be faithful users of your cameras in the future!”

As a time-lapse photographer myself, this is a huge deal breaker. Thousands of photographers rely on specialized apps for their work. Hopefully that was a honest mistake and Nikon will correct this problem in the next firmware update.

You can show your support by leaving a comment here or at the end of Wegner’s article on his website.

[via LRTimelapse]

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3 Comments

Spy Black's picture

...or at least release APIs that allow third-party apps to work through SnapBridge. Everyone is still at a loss at to what SnapBridge is suppose to do for you that you weren't already doing with wireless.

Teo Lab's picture

Well, here's my support then :D. I might be interested in a D7500, but only if snapbridge has been fixed.

The article is however incorrect in that it is possible to set up the wifi on a D500 at least to use third party apps, I regularly link mine to qDSLRdashboard but you do have to be careful to do it in a specific (undocumented) way. Snap bridge is however a almost useless app and an open wifi would be so much better.