Your good camera hardware is going to get better with a future software update from Google
Google has confirmed to Cnet that the rumors of RAW file support coming to Android are true, as well as native burst shot for the camera application. According to Google spokesperson Gina Scigliano, support is already in place at the low level and the next step is to work on an API.
Android's latest camera HAL (Hardware Abstraction Layer) and framework supports raw and burst-mode photography. We will expose a developer API in a future release to expose more of the HAL functionality.
What does this mean for the user? Well we won't know for sure until we actually see it in use, but it brings some great possibilities to the table. Support for RAW image files can be used to create professional-style photo editors, along the lines of LightRoom from Adobe. When built with a touch interface and small screen in mind, these apps should be able to do some pretty powerful stuff.
In addition, burst-mode shooting being built into the firmware will allow the default Android camera app (as well as any app who wants to use the public API) multiple shot image-taking with little fuss. Besides the way it is used for HDR+ on the Nexus 5, this is something we've seen and enjoyed from HTC as part of their ImageSense tech, and having it at the hardware level makes things fast and fluid.
What we don't know is when to expect any of this. Google is always pushing Android forwards — even if we don't see the new features — and there is no telling if these changes will require a new platform version or just a minor point release. We're ready for them either way!