New mobile phone camera technologies

When was the last time you carried around a 2nd device for taking pictures? No need! Phones now come equipped with cameras. With all these advances in camera phone technology, point and shoots just aren’t as important as they used to be. There is still lots of room for innovation in mobile phone cameras. Here are two recent innovations.

Turning a camera phone into a microscope article tells that researchers at the VTT Technical Research Centre in Finland have developed an optical plastic lens accessory that can turn an ordinary camera phone into a microscope with a resolution between 6-10 microns. A new Finnish start-up called KeepLoop (Tampere, Finland) is already exploring the commercial potential of the invention (first products expected this spring).

Nokia announces camera phone with 41 megapixel sensor. Nokia has history of making best camera phones. Video and movie shooting with a smartphone tells how N8 phone has been used to shoot full lenght movie. Now Nokia has made a nice successor to N8. Nokia recently announced 808 PureView: Belle OS, 4-inch display and 41-megapixel camera. It has a sensor resolution of over 41-megapixels when shooting stills — or 34-megapixels for 16:9 images. One of the key advantages is it lets you zoom in three or four times in either photos or video and still have a sharp image with many megapixels resolution. Nokia said it can create a better five-megapixel image by using the data in the seven extra pixels to inform which single pixel it uses. It’s not about the amount of the pixels, it’s what you do with them.

Nokia 808 PureView – How good can a pixel be? video is a look at the technology involved and some sample shots taken with Nokia’s freshly minted 808 PureView imaging powerhouse .

If it were easy to put a decent zoom lens in a camera phone, Nokia might never have come up with its biggest breakthrough in mobile phone imaging in years. It has been difficult it is to achieve good optical zoom performance in smartphones. The lens must be very tiny to fit inside phone, so lenses lets very little light in and their structure is very complex and hard to manufacture.

Nokia 808 PureView ushers in a revolution in smartphone imaging: The Nokia 808 PureView features a large, high-resolution 41 megapixel sensor with high-performance Carl Zeiss optics and new pixel oversampling technology. The Inside Story of Nokia’s 41-Megapixel Camera Phone: Five Years in the Making article tells the the development team inside Nokia had been working on the technology in secret for the last five years. “We were aware that it is possible to do zooming by very high resolution image sensor, but the idea of putting such a large and high resolution image sensor into a smartphone felt completely crazy,” Alakarhu said. “That was five years ago, and I guess it still feels like that.” One of the key advantages is it lets you zoom in three or four times in either photos or video and still have a sharp image. Finnish articles Zoomissa miehet Nokia Pure View –teknologian takana and Nämä miehet – Eero ja Juha – Nokian kamerahirviön takana give some more details on the invention and men behind the invention.

Nokia 808 PureView’s primary selling point: it’s a phone for camera enthusiasts. In many ways, Nokia’s phone more closely rivals a point-and-shoot camera in size than a smartphone. Let’s say bye to point and shooting cameras! Expectations of the future sales price of this camera-phone will be 450 euros (without taxes).


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How camera makers are getting their design groove on

    A wave of experimentation is sweeping the camera industry as it grapples with the second phase of the digital revolution. Be careful: today’s bold design could be tomorrow’s evolutionary dead end.

    Ecosystem wars

    Cameras have long had an ecosystem element of their own: the proprietary lens mount used to attach lenses to camera bodies.

    The smartphone crisis
    For ordinary people, the biggest change in photography is the arrival of smartphones with respectable if not stellar cameras. Early phone cameras suffered from dismal image quality and performance, but each passing year has shown improvements in resolution, low-light performance, lens quality, and speed. And as the smartphone market has expanded, more people get access to those capabilities.

    Because people always carry their phones, those cameras are the ones increasingly used to document people’s lives photographically. As the phones’ cameras improve, there’s less and less reason to carry a regular camera even for special occasions. And that’s just the first reason camera makers need to be worried.

    The second is that people do things with their smartphone photos — post them to Facebook, edit and share them with Instagram, annotate Evernote documents, digitize business cards so contact information is synchronized with the cloud, feed them into Google to translate a sign in a foreign language. That’s all possible because smartphones, unlike most cameras, are connected to the Internet.

    But wireless networking in the camera industry in general has been conspicuous by its absence, isolating cameras from people’s in-the-moment sharing activities.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Apple Acknowledges iPhone 5 Camera Problem, Says You’re Holding It Wrong

    Some photography experts have speculated that the purple flare is a product of the sapphire glass covering the iPhone 5′s camera.

    So it is final, folks: Apple says that, if your photos have a purple flare, this is totally normal behavior of the iPhone 5′s camera. You are just holding it wrong.

    Their solution: “Angle the camera away from the bright light source when taking pictures.”

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Kaspersky adds mugshot feature to Mobile Security software

    SECURITY FIRM Kaspersky has updated its Android mobile security software today with a “Mugshot” feature to help users to identify phone thieves by taking photos of the user via a front-facing camera.

    Activated via the software’s Web Management interface, photos taken of the thieves are uploaded to a portal where the smartphone owner can view them.

    Kaspersky said it also remains possible to control the device remotely via special SMS based commands, along with the SIM Watch function that offers an alternative method of remote control.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    DxOMark Mobile first quick glance: Smartphones beat 5-year-old DSCs

    What is the best cameraphone available on the market? Does the incredible Nokia 808 PureView sensor mean the end of the DSC era? How fine are full HD videos shot with your smartphone compared to DSC’s ones? Here are our answers

    Is a smartphone worth using as a digital still camera?

    Nokia has blown all of these specifications out of the water with its new, bulky, 41-megapixel Nokia 808 PureView.

    But shrinking and squeezing more megapixels onto a sensor’s surface does not necessarily translate to better image quality. Smaller pixels and their reduced area-size absorb less light, which consequently leads to a reduction in their signal-to-noise ratio, often leading to noisier images

    Many mobile devices address noise through their imaging filters and processors. But tamping down noise frequently leads to other image defects, such as loss of detail and texture

    The best smartphone on the market for shooting still images takes better photos than a 5-year-old high-end compact

    Yes, the implausible 41-MPix Nokia 808 PureView sensor is fulfilling its promise, but let us reassure you that it is not outperforming the new generation of DSCs, and that there is a long way to go to attain DSLR image quality (as shown in the following graph):

    For taking awesome videos, the best mobiles have an incredible advantage over quite recent DSCs

    The full HD videos of the Samsung Galaxy SIII, the best smartphone DxOMark Mobile has tested so far, are truly impressive, with better quality than those of the Canon Powershot S100

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Apple patent could remotely disable protesters’ phone cameras

    Summary: A new patent, granted to Apple, could prevent academic cheating, cinema interruptions, but also see areas of political protest activity ‘ring-fenced’ disabling phone and tablet cameras.

    Isn’t it a shame you can’t take a photo of the police officer beating a man in the street because your oppressive government remotely disabled your smartphone camera?

    A new patent granted to Apple could do all of the above.

    U.S. Patent No. 8,254,902, otherwise known as “Apparatus and methods for enforcement of policies upon a wireless device,” was granted in late-August, and would allow phone policies to be set to “chang[e] one or more functional or operational aspects of a wireless device [...] upon the occurrence of a certain event.”

    What that means in real-terms is “preventing wireless devices from communicating with other wireless devices (such as in academic settings),” and for, “forcing certain electronic devices to enter “sleep mode” when entering a sensitive area.”

    But the patented technology may also be used to restrict protesters’ right to free expression in oppressive regimes around the world — if you haven’t checked recently, there’s plenty of them — by preventing camera images and video being taken at political rallies and events.

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    It’s clear that although Apple may implement the technology, it would not be Apple’s decision to activate the ‘feature,’ such as a remote-switch — it would be down governments, businesses and network owners to set such policies.

    Those policies would be activated by GPS, and Wi-Fi or mobile base-stations, which would ring-fence (“geofence”) around a building, a protest, or a sensitive area to prevent phone cameras from taking pictures or recording video.


  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    New Video Breaks Down How An Apple Patent Stomps All Over The 1st Amendment

    A patent granted to Apple in late-August allows governments to disable iPhones and other smartphones, targeting specific apps even, when they enter what is deemed a “sensitive” area.

    U.S. Patent No. 8,254,902, titled “Apparatus and methods for enforcement of policies upon a wireless device,” enables phone policies to be set to change “one or more functional or operational aspects of a wireless device … upon the occurrence of a certain event.”

    Camera? Off. Voice recorder? Off. No calls out, no calls in. Total blackout; or, for an event like a concert, the organizers could target specifically just recording functions of a user’s phone.

    Read more:

  8. Tomi says:

    How to make & view 3D Stereograms with your iPhone

    A Stereogram is an image that can be perceived with depth perception via one of several viewing techniques. This is the basis of 3D imaging and is in essence assisting one eye to see one image and the other to see a slightly different image.

    Naked-eye Stereogram viewing can be a lot of fun and is made much easier to learn with this viewing assistant. After a bit of practice you might be able to view the 3D image without the viewer at all by using the same cross-eyed to uncross-eyed technique explained in this tutorial.

  9. Tomi says:

    Tripod Mount Anything!

    extremely simple method he used for mounting a webcam on a tripod. His article explains it better, but the basic premise is to glue a 1/4 – 20 nut onto the bottom of it.

    After seeing this tip, I was reminded of a slightly crazier, if effective mount that I made for my state of the art Env2 phone.

    why not check out this motorized camera rig

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Time published a cover photo taken on iPhone

    A well-known weekly magazine Time has used the cover image of the iPhone 4S smart phone images taken by Hurricane Sandy.

    The cover was taken by the photographer Ben Lowyn, who says that smartphone cameras can overcome the traditional in many ways.

    Even if Lowy is good with smartphone with a camera, he said, many professional photographers see him as an amateur or as a tourist.

    Lowy carries two iPhones, Mophie Juice Pack accessories Manfrotto battery and LED light.

    Lowy would like to see better low-light shooting capabilities, adjustments to shutter speed and aperture. Still, the smartphone has a camera in her tool of choice.

    “If you can create a different aesthetic than what people are used to seeing, you are able to charm the audience,”


    Time Magazine cover image shot with iPhone: interview with Ben Lowy

    Ben Lowy: Virtually Unfiltered

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nokia’s important camera guru switched to a car manufacturer

    Camera technology is Nokia’s main selling points for the smartphone market. The company is a great loss when the camera long driven the development of Damian Dinning leave the company. He moves suddenly, a car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover. Dinning is completed by two simple reasons.

    Damian Dinning came to Nokia in 2004. He brought a Nokia camera-important field of expertise. Dinning had previously worked with such as Minolta and Eastman Kodak.

    Dinning, Nokia has developed an excellent camera unit. In recent breakthroughs such as PureView camera that brought the smartphone up to 41-megapixel image sensor.

    Damian Dinning says PureViewClub-release , that he would not have wanted to leave Nokia. Reason for this situation is the fact that Nokia will focus on the key personnel to the company’s head office in Finland. Dinning says that his family situation at the moment does not allow it.

    He says that in addition to photography from an early age he has had another great interest: cars. So he takes the opportunity to work in this area.


    Exclusive: Damian Dinning to be joining…

    After today’s story on Damian Dinning, I am extremely honored he sent me his exclusive response to his decision to leave Nokia.

    Following the news of my forthcoming departure from Nokia I wanted to say a few words:

    Firstly, wow! Huge thanks for the incredibly kind words of support and well wishes. I have been so touched by all of your messages.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook Instagram: we sell users’ photos

    Purchased by the hugely popular Facebook photo service Instagram has made a change that has attracted strong criticism. The new Terms and Conditions state directly that Instagram may, for example to sell pictures of users to advertisers – the users and do not get any of this compensation.

    Instagram has released a website new user conditions , which come into force on january 16 day.


  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Thank you, and we’re listening

    Legal documents are easy to misinterpret. So I’d like to address specific concerns we’ve heard from everyone:

    The language we proposed also raised question about whether your photos can be part of an advertisement. We do not have plans for anything like this and because of that we’re going to remove the language that raised the question.

    Ownership Rights Instagram users own their content and Instagram does not claim any ownership rights over your photos. Nothing about this has changed. We respect that there are creative artists and hobbyists alike that pour their heart into creating beautiful photos, and we respect that your photos are your photos. Period.

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Polaroid confirms plans to intro interchangeable lens camera that runs Android at CES 2013

    Polaroid confirmed to Imaging Resource that it will soon unveil a new interchangeable lens camera that will run Google’s Android operating system. The company offered few other details about the forthcoming camera.

    “There will be an Android powered, interchangeable lens camera introduced by Polaroid at CES 2013,” Scott Hardy, president and CEO of Polaroid told Imaging Resource in an emailed statement. “Additional information and specs will be released during the show.”

  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Smart phones with cameras, a new feature: take a photograph, focus later

    Electronics manufacturer Toshiba is developing a new type of image sensor, which allows the fine tuning of the image to a certain point after taking the picture. Reported on The Verge.

    The development of the cells in the operation is the same type as the Lytro camera


  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Cell phone camera detects allergens in food

    Food allergies are an emerging public concern, affecting as many as eight percent of young children and two percent of adults. While consumer-protection laws regulate the labeling of ingredients in pre-packaged foods, cross-contaminations can still occur during processing, manufacturing and transportation.

    A team of researchers from the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science (Los Angeles, CA, USA) has developed a lightweight device called the iTube which attaches to a common cell phone to detect allergens in food samples.

    The iTube attachment uses the cell phone’s built-in camera, along with an accompanying smart-phone application that runs a test with the same high level of sensitivity a laboratory would.

  17. Audio and video 2013 « Tomi Engdahl’s ePanorama blog says:

    [...] and video 2013 Cell phones with build in cameras are replacing cheap pocket size digital cameras and video cameras. Best cell phone cameras can be better in many ways than cheap pocket digital cameras from few years [...]

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Even as cameras in mobile devices have improved in resolution and performance, they have been stymied by the form-factor limitations that are inherent in the devices themselves. However, the increase in available computational power offers a solution: that is, to process the images from the camera in novel ways to match the capabilities of dedicated cameras, and also exceed those capabilities by performing new ways of image capture that cannot be accomplished with traditional cameras


  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Computational Photography is an emerging new field created by the convergence of computer graphics, computer vision and photography. Its role is to overcome the limitations of the traditional camera by using computational techniques to produce a richer, more vivid, perhaps more perceptually meaningful representation of our visual world.


  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Computational photography & the Stanford Frankencamera

    faster computing + communications will revolutionize
    digital photography, creating new markets
    – computational photography points the way
    • research & commercialization of computational photography
    is being hampered by the lack of programmable cameras
    – traditional cameras are closed platforms
    • open-source cameras will benefit the research community
    and accelerate the revolution
    – 3rd party developers, plugins, apps

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Today, smartphone cameras are quite sophisticated. The picture quality in when picture is taken on good lighting conditions can be hard to see different than what you get with DSLR or picket digital camera.

    You can take good pictures with cell phone camera when you understand its weaknesses. Since the image sensor is a small recorders, mobile phones have poor low light performance.

    Another small-cell-induced feature is the large depth of field. The entire image area is sharp (you can’t blur the background as with DSLR at wide apertures).

    Small cell phone cells are usually able to focus very close to your subject.

    A number of smart phones have digital zoom that does not change the focal length of the lens, just crops the image. Instead of using zoom get more near to subject.

    You should keep in mind good weather and light when shooting with a mobile phone. At bright day cell phone camera performs well, but keep in mind that cell phone cameras have usually weaker dynamics than bigger cameras.

    In the morning and at dusk bigger cameras perform considerably better than mobile phones. Smartphones, cameras, small cells are vulnerable to problems in low light. When flash is used the images tend to look unnatural.


  22. Lydia Tennison says:

    I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Well written!|

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nokia to bring 41-megapixel ‘Pureview’ sensor system to Lumia range

    The oversampling system brought to Nokia’s last Symbian phone during 2012 will be coming to its Windows Phone Lumia range soon, the Guardian has learned

    Nokia is finally bringing its “revolutionary” 41-megapixel Pureview sensor to its Lumia range of Windows Phone handsets, according to sources close to the Finnish handset maker.

    The new model will be known as EOS, and will launch in the summer in the US.

    The 41MP sensor debuted at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona in February 2012 on Nokia’s final Symbian phone, the 808.

    Lumia 920 doesn’t have the 41MP sensor, but does have what Nokia calls “floating lens technology”: a gyroscope detects shaking such as uneven hand motion and the whole camera mechanism moves to compensate, so the shutter can be open for longer in low light. Results from the Lumia 920′s 8.7MP pixel in low light are certainly pretty good – in most low-light situations you don’t need the rather harsh xenon flash

    Adding the 41MP Pureview sensor to the Lumia range would certainly put some distance between Nokia and its Windows Phone rivals HTC and Samsung.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nokia Invests in High-Resolution Cameras to Woo Apple Customers

    Nokia Growth Partners, the venture- capital arm of Nokia (NOK1V) Oyj, plans to invest in California startup Pelican Imaging as the phonemaker seeks to win back customers from Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Android devices with cameras that give greater depth and ease of splicing together images.

    The Pelican investment is part of a push to differentiate Nokia as it tries to stimulate demand in its Lumia smartphones, which run Microsoft Corp.’s Windows software, to reverse falling sales and recover market share.

    Lumia sales rose to 5.6 million in the first quarter, up from 4.4 million in the previous three months. Still, Apple and Android-based devices control more than 90 percent of the smartphone market

    Array cameras, which use multiple optics and mesh the data into one image, “are on the cusp of being commercialized and Pelican does software for that,” Bo Ilsoe, a partner at Nokia Growth Partners, said yesterday in a phone interview from California. “It’s very complicated to do this algorithmically and Pelican is one of the companies that has mastered this technology.”

    Nokia, which bought Lund, Sweden-based imaging-software maker Scalado last July, released the 41-megapixel 808 PureView last year and is incorporating the technology in smartphones including the flagship Lumia 920.

  25. Tomi says:

    Nokia reportedly investing in Lytro-style array camera startup

    Nokia is eyeing an investment in Pelican Imaging, a California startup working on array camera technology for smartphones, according to Bloomberg. Array cameras offer similar benefits to Lytro’s light field technique, allowing photographers to adjust an image’s focus after it has been captured, but use a single self-contained module with multiple optics.

    “It’s very complicated to do this algorithmically and Pelican is one of the companies that has mastered this technology,” said Bo Ilsoe of Nokia Growth Partners, who added that the venture capital group has been watching Pelican since its founding in 2008.

  26. Tomi says:

    Pelican Imaging has developed an innovative new array camera for mobile devices, providing depth at every pixel.

    Pelican Imaging has developed a revolutionary new array camera for mobile devices, providing depth at every pixel. Focus on any subject, change focus (even on multiple subjects) after you take the photo, capture linear measurements, scale and segment your images, change backgrounds, and apply filters, all from any device.

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Latest leak suggests Nokia EOS to pack 41MP camera, possible metallic variant also spotted (updated)

    We gotta say, originally we weren’t very confident in the above alleged spy shots of the rumored Nokia EOS smartphone, but after talking to the leakster from Sina Weibo, we think we got this figured out. First of all, there are two parts here: the paint-less camera cover plate that now says “41 MEGA PIXEL” — the same camera resolution featured on the 808 PureView — instead of “XX MEGA PIXEL,” and a metallic chassis of the EOS phone.

    Judging by his background and track record so far (he claims he also leaked the red EOS factory photos), we have reason to believe that this leakster does have a good source on the factory floor. Hence our two assumptions: either this chassis is an early engineering sample, or that this is a metallic variant of the plastic EOS.

  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nokia is expected to make public in July 11 on the new Windows Phone-phone , which is as much as 41 mega-pixel camera.

    Evleaks Twitter account, which has previously been leaked in advance to the public a number of Nokia phones in particular, said Tuesday that the so-called EOS Nokia phone model number is coming in 1020.

    Top Camera may be the kind of attraction that brings the device at least a considerable amount of attention.


  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nokia’s Lumia 1020 is a lot of camera in a high-end smartphone body (hands-on)

    At first blush, it’s impressive. The 1020 is handsome and sleek, rounded and not quite so boxy and large as some of the other Lumia phones we’ve seen. It’s not small, though: the 41-megapixel lens coming out the back is large enough that it props the phone up off a table when it’s laid down flat, and the 1020 certainly doesn’t match the sleekness of the 920. The device comes in black, yellow, and white – the yellow is as awesomely ostentatious as always, but we’re smitten with the sleeker black model too.

  30. tomi says:

    Nokia Lumia 1020 Hands On: This Actually Might Be Amazing

    The first question you’ll have about Nokia’s new Lumia 1020 is how the photos look. And yes, they’re so very sharp.

    It’s not just light, it’s decidedly not unbearably ugly. That is a big deal, actually, because there was a chance it would be so impossibly misshapen that all the Finnish designers in the land couldn’t hide it. It’s not the most beautiful phone, but it’s just not-ugly enough to own.

    And then the camera. It’s great, as you’d expect. Pushing in on areas of the screen for zoom is impressive, and the images are incredibly sharp for a phone. I’d believe that they were taken with a pretty good point and shoot if no one told me otherwise. And the screen’s color performance makes the images look great (maybe a little oversaturated, but that’s sort of the norm for good cameraphones now).

    Zoom in video mode, stabilized only by the OIS, actually looks shockingly steady. Zoomed all the way in and walking around, the video looked perfectly acceptable, which is impressive.

    Speaking of which: The Nokia Pro Camera might actually be just as much of a big deal as the camera itself. The dial controls are magnificent, and actually great UX. You just drag the shutter button to the left (you can thumb it) and it gives you all of the controls as dials. Exposure, focus, ISO, white balance, all of them. And then if you want to default back to auto, you just slide the shutter button to the left again.

    You can also pop out individual settings by tapping on them at the top of the screen. It’s very, very fluid in practical use, and honest to god, it’s better than the crud companies like Nikon and Canon use on their touchscreens. Hey guys, this is how you do this.

  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Damian Dinning’s feedback on the Lumia 1020

    It’s relatively easy to see how ambitious the development of the original Nokia 808 PureView was.
    A super-large 41mp sensor, in a phone!? Reportedly so mad in fact that tech bloggers didn’t run with leaks they received apparently, because they considered such rumours of a 41mp phone as so far beyond belief it was a story without any form of credibility!

    I fondly remember some of the initial reactions. Perhaps my favourite being that of a CEO of a well-known far-east based company who visited the Nokia booth immediately after the announcement at MWC. After taking a few minutes to carefully study the performance he then slammed the device down on the counter, uttered an expletive term (I won’t mention here on Marc’s site) and then promptly stormed off with his entourage trailing behind him!

    When it came to considering development of its follower, the team were certainly not short of ambition either. They knew it would need to be thinner given the trend for thinness [at times, a somewhat ridiculous infatuation] in the industry, but also knew that there would be a natural expectation for it to also be ‘better’

    In summary, the team would need to deliver a slimmer product with the design language that has become a Lumia trademark, which would therefore dictate a smaller camera module, yet one which would meet or exceed the cumulative expectations set by both the Lumia 920 and 808 PureView – so no small task!

    Despite my departure from Nokia I’ve had a number of people asking for my view on the Lumia 1020, especially compared to the previous benchmark, the 808 PureView.

    Regardless of the improvements OIS brings to still image quality as well as extending the range of situations you can record in where others are simply unable to record an image e.g. low light, its addition to video can easily be underestimated! When I’ve previously used the Lumia 920 and now the 1020, it blows me away how smooth video can be. Panning can look as if you’re using a Steadicam, it’s that good!

    I’ve read a lot of commentary around the 1020’s still image quality. Whilst the majority would seem to be extremely positive, I’m very much aware that there have been a number of negative comments. Those seem to be centred on noise, sharpening and colour saturation or as a summary some may say, ‘over-processed’. Especially when making comparisons with the 808 which made a reputation for itself based on its unprocessed images, something no other competing device today can emulate.

    Before Nokia introduced the 808 we had learnt that there were a growing group of people who appreciated vibrant and sharp images viewed full-screen.

    The 808 was equipped with both saturation and sharpness settings in its creative mode.

    Having worked for a few years at Kodak, I had been exposed (pardon the poor pun) to a lot research and insight in to subjective preferences relating to colour reproduction.

    Colour is perhaps the hardest aspect of digital imaging to get right in the first place across a wide range of scenarios and colours, but it becomes significantly more complex as you throw in subjective preferences.

    Kodak typically provided more vivid and vibrant colour whilst Fuji was better known for its more natural reproduction.

    Kodak’s colour science was to effectively attempt to reproduce colour as your ‘mind’s eye’ remembered it.

    Nokia benchmark image/video quality by capturing images/videos in a variety of conditions with a range of devices which all reproduce colour (as well as other image attributes) slightly differently. These images are then evaluated in fixed controlled and repeatable conditions

    When Apple introduced their first real effort at a camera in an iPhone with the iPhone 4, the colours were often commented on as being over saturated.

    I am of the belief that there are two core user groups which need to be considered here. The first I would summarise as the more involved photographer, especially those that spend time using applications such as Adobe’s Photoshop. Typically preferring images to be as untouched or free of enhancements from the manufacturer as possible, so they are left free to optimise the images according to their own specific preferences. These individuals are important because they can potentially influence many others.

    The second group is far greater in size but less influential. Typically the preferences here are towards vivid colour (as long as it looks right, according to the ‘mind’s eye’). In terms of subjective image quality they can be influenced by relatively high levels of sharpening as they tend not to be ‘pixel peepers’ and so never look at images at such high magnification to see sharpening artefacts. High levels of sharpening can create the perception of far more detail in an image when viewed at full screen on a laptop or tablet for example.

    Apple appears to do very well against this second group, whilst traditionally Nokia, especially with products such as the N8 and 808 are highly appreciated amongst the former group.

    Referring to our two groups again, for full screen viewing I would argue Nokia have it close to bang on in terms of noise, sharpness and detail.

    However, for the pixel peepers amongst you, based on multiple forums and comments provoked by reviews, it’s clearly considered to be noisy and over sharpened when comparing against DSLR’s or even Nokia’s own 808.

  32. Mobile trends for 2014 « Tomi Engdahl’s ePanorama blog says:

    [...] smartphone makers have clear strategies to take photography to extremes. 40 megapixel camera is already on the market and several manufacturers are playing with re-focus after shooting options. In high-end models we [...]

  33. Audio and video trends for 2014 « Tomi Engdahl’s ePanorama blog says:

    [...] smartphone makers have clear strategies to take photography to extremes: 40 megapixel camera is already on the market and several manufacturers are playing with re-focus after shooting [...]

  34. Mary R. Rodriguez says:

    Tech question on cameras

    I have gotten more and more into photography recently, and though I’m just a beginner I’m trying to learn all I can. One thing that I’m not sure about is the difference between crop sensor and full frame cameras. I mean, I get that full frame cameras have bigger sensors, but why is that a big deal? More to the point, why does that make them more expensive than other cameras???

    A related question I have is where’s a good place to buy a beginner camera? I’ve used my phone up to this point, but I’m thinking a “real” camera would be a good upgrade because I really do want to learn the fundamentals of photography, and I don’t know that my phone is the best tool for doing that. I bought a computer from Adorama a while back and it was a good experience, and I’ve read a number of good reviews on them (like, but I know there’s lots of other options out there. I’d really appreciate any input. Thanks!

  35. Cynthia S. Robey says:

    Thank you, I want to say that this is a great list. I used 5 applications out of 10. They are very convenient. For me, the main thing is to maintain the quality of the photo, and if there is an opportunity, then improve it. And if you need to enlarge photos, then it copes well with this task. You can increase not just the size, but also the number of pixels.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *