Y'know, I should never say "I don't write about X." Whenever I do that, then I hear about nothing but X for the next week, and end up writing about it.
'Insanely awesome,' and yes, we quote
So. The best phone in a camera, currently, as far as I can tell from quick-search research, is the Nokia 1020. Described as a niche device for mobile photography enthusiasts, Sam Sabri at Windows Phone Central said, "...to oversimplify the Lumia 1020, you could call it a reworked Lumia 920 with an insanely awesome camera...the big difference (and we mean big) being the gigantic camera hump on the rear of the Lumia 1020. That camera hump houses the best imaging technology found in any modern smartphone." Sam concludes that the 20-MP Nokia Lumia 1520 and Lumia Icon are better all-around devices, but says the 41-MP camera in the 1020 is still better for photography. Adding, "we love our Lumia 1020’s. Unashamedly, unabashedly."
Note that there is a nice grip-case for the 1020.
Meanwhile, Amazon announced its own phone, the Fire (surprisingly, from Amazon, not a good distinctive/searchable Internet name. Also, is "fire" a word with good connotations? Not for me, whether you get fired or you get burned). (And I actually didn't even know the Fire was coming when I wrote about cellphone cameras the other day. Maybe it was just around and about in the ether and I sensed it by cultural osmosis.) The Fire features a 13MP camera with optical image stabilization, 1080p HD video, a 2.2 GHz quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM, and a 4.7" HD display. I wonder if it also portends a completely new category of photograph: the dynamic perspective still image, which would sit somewhere between a still photograph and video. Or between and off to the side a bit. (That was a joke, get it? See, the Fire...oh, never mind.)
Manual camera controls in iOS 8
Not to be left behind, the world's largest camera manufacturer (Apple, that would be) has announced that it will add a suite of manual camera controls to iOS 8.
And so the complication begins! This could be good for dedicated-device camera makers...we'll probably soon get to the point where ordinary people no longer know how to use the cameras in their mobile devices, so if they want to take pictures they'll have to buy cameras again.
(Thanks to John Hogg and several other readers)
Original contents copyright 2014 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved. Links in this post may be to our affiliates; sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
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Featured Comments from:
Andre Y: "I've said this over at Ming's blog, but I'll say it here, and perhaps get flamed... Seeing the BBC report on the Leica centenary makes me think that the iPhone may occupy the same niche that the Leica rangefinder did 60 or 70 years ago. This quotation from the video says it all (about 1:08 in): 'Its strength is that it’s incredibly simple to use…It's incredibly ergonomic and feels part of you, but you make great pictures with your head and your heart, not necessarily with the camera. Professionals tend to use it for jobs where you need to be quiet and unobtrusive.' He also goes on to point out that HC-B used one focal length for his career.
"Which part of this isn't fulfilled by the iPhone today? None! And in its day, 35mm film was considered inferior in image quality to larger formats, just like the iPhone's tiny sensor when compared to its larger digital brethren. One more point: many consider a strength of the rangefinder that you can see the scene outside of the len's view, so you can better anticipate when to press the shutter button. What is a live-view screen but a rangefinder view expanded out to infinity? (Yes, sunlight washes out LCD screens, but consider the idea, and screens will continue to improve.)"
[You won't get flamed here (despite the news item about the Fire). I don't allow it. —Mike the Ed.]
David Evans: "I already don't know how to use the camera in my phone. Admittedly that's because I haven't bothered to learn, feeling that it's a higher priority to learn how to use my real cameras."