Compact Cameras and the Threat of Camera Phones

linkedit

Rookie
Nov 7, 2010
Morris County, NJ
He gives pretty strong evidence that smart phones are taking over the cheap point and shoot market, then follows it up with examples that people that use smartphones really don't care about lol

The second line of his article pretty much says it all.

"This comes from the announcement that the Apple iPhone 4 is now the most used camera on Flickr."
 
Jul 7, 2010
I find it interesting how we search for the holy grail in quality and in the meantime expect convenience as a normality. Large sensors, many megapixels, HD television, 4k video cameras, but also iphone photographs on the front page of the NY Times, skype interviews at cable news networks, cell phone images and low res video from Youtube on the net and TV.
 

BBW

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
betwixt and between
BB
Too true for the most part, Wouter.

I like to think of myself as a less is more type, but I know that I fall under the spell of convenience, often. I can say that I am happy to have a camera separate from a phone, though I idd recently succumb to the wiles of the iPhone, and have had a bit of fun with its camera, though that was not its main draw for me.
 

deirdre

Top Veteran
Sep 26, 2010
Recently, I happened to buy a medium format camera from an enthusiast. By enthusiast, I mean he has a drum scanner (for film) and can print digital prints up to 60 feet long (!).

He asked how my M8 printed large sizes. I said I didn't have one of those prints with me, but I pulled out my 9x12 MPIX print of an iPhone 4 photo. He was very impressed, but had misunderstood me and thought it was an M8 print. I said, no, it's an iPhone photo. He took the money I gave him and went out and bought an iPhone that afternoon.

This was the picture in question, fwiw.
 

Lennart Elg

New Member
Aug 26, 2010
>>Open source firmware and user-settings that can be saved on SD cards would be the answer to many prayers. Imagine a digital Canonet, Olympus XA or Rollei 35, etc. and a pocket full of cards marked “Kodachrome 200”, “Velvia 50 (ISO 400)” and “Super Presto push +2”>>

How many buyers in today´s market would even recognize the names Canonet, Olympus XA or Rollei 35 ? "Kodachrome" may stick in popular memory a bit longer, but "Kodachrome 200" would not ring many bells..
 

Lili

Hall of Famer
Oct 17, 2010
Dallas, TX
Lili
he ease of sharing ones photo quickly is in large part part of the Phonecams appeal.
Plus it is stunningly easy to have a camera with one when it is part of your phone.
The best camera is the one didn't have to leave at home.
The latest higher end compacts are stunningly competent.
The latest higher phonecams are geting very good indeed.
Nokia makes an uber camera phone the 12mp carl zeiss lensed N8
I got one a few months back at it have been my carry-camera and still is.

A Daily Happening that I adored being able to capture, BTW
I can take the image, edit in phone and upload directly to flickr within minutes.
I suspect the smaller/lowest end P&S's will be overtaken by the phone if they've not been already.
The high end stuff, the CSC's and the high end small sensors are progressing just as fast if only for a smaller market.
 

AzPete

Veteran
Dec 24, 2010
iPhone junkie

I didn't quit know where to put these photos, and wanted to share with you my experience visiting my mother in law and son while vacationing in Hawaii a few weeks ago.

It was wonderful, sad, emotional and happy... A roller coaster ride to say the least. Got homesick again and vowed to go again for new years. Enjoy and thanks for taking the time to look.



 

stratokaster

Top Veteran
Dec 27, 2010
Kiev, Ukraine
Pavel
I use the camera in my phone all the time - mostly to photograph useful things like train schedules, public announcements etc. I almost always have the camera with me which shoots faster and takes better photos than any phone. However, my wife prefers her iPhone to a proper camera.
 
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flysurfer

Hall of Famer
Aug 31, 2011
Today's smartphones are tiny computers with a nice OS and UI, apps and Internet access to buy/load new apps, share information and do whatever you want to accomplish – play a game, solve a problem, process data, navigate, shoot and cut a video, write a letter, do your online banking – you name it, your phone can do it.

The camera of the future will just be like that. It'll have a nice OS and UI, apps and an app store, and it'll connect to the Internet. You will be able to enhance your camera with apps, to configure and reconfigure it as you please. Third party developers will add additional functions though apps, you'll be able to buy them in "Nikon Store". Or probably rather a "Samsung Store", as legacy manufactures are falling behind and might end up like Kodak, Contax etc. did when digital cameras replaced traditional film. They might remain stuck in their old paradigm of "what makes a camera", of "how a camera has to look like" and "how to sell and market a camera".

Who knows, cameras of the future may be give-away items like many cell phones are today, as the money will made by online purchases, with apps, service subscriptions, in-app purchases and so on. This "Samsung Store" might be part of a "Samsung World", a set of tools to process, share, print and organize your photos (and videos, of course) directly out of your camera, phone, tablett, laptop and PC. It won't matter, because everything will be connected.

Obviously, there will be an overlapping area between cameras and smartphones, and this area will become bigger and bigger. In a few years, the cheap compact camera market will be pretty dead, as every smartphone will do a perfect job of what a cheap compact is capable today. That's why manufacturers are now scrambling to get into the ILC market, because smartphones don't have interchangables lenses, and that's most likely to remain the case for several more years. They will get some zoom capability, though. Hence Fuji's entry into the premium and super-premium compact market (X10, X100) and their expected entry into the ILC market next year. Nikon is doing it, too, and their sensor is small, obviously targeting the lifestyle crowd of high-end smartphone users, not old-fashioned photographers.
 

BBW

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
betwixt and between
BB
Pete, at first I thought I'd move these to another thread where they'd get more views...maybe Portraits..., but here they shall stay. You've brought this thread back up for fresh thoughts by sharing deeply memorable images that you were able to make with your iPhone, in part, I'm guessing, because you were able to be completely unobtrusive yet intimate. These pictures show what a serious compact a camera phone can be. (and please don't hesitate on posting these elsewhere, too, Pete)

Pavel and Nic - you are both so practical!

flysurfer, I can so easily see the trajectory you've outlined. These really are exciting days ahead, if we remain open to them.
 

Lili

Hall of Famer
Oct 17, 2010
Dallas, TX
Lili
I find the convenience of the camera phone seductive. Flysurfer's views are interesting and likely to be accurate.
 

Lili

Hall of Famer
Oct 17, 2010
Dallas, TX
Lili
I didn't quit know where to put these photos, and wanted to share with you my experience visiting my mother in law and son while vacationing in Hawaii a few weeks ago.

It was wonderful, sad, emotional and happy... A roller coaster ride to say the least. Got homesick again and vowed to go again for new years. Enjoy and thanks for taking the time to look.



Splendid Series Pete.
 

pdh

Legend
Jan 2, 2011
I always thought the word "threat" a bit odd in this context.
especially as the camera in my phone is so terrible there's no threat of ever making a decent shot with it ...
 
D

dixeyk

Guest
I think that the high quality camer phones are not the future they are the now. That's not to say that I will run out and replace my cameras with an iPhone or Android but for a lot of folks its a pretty appealing option. Take the iPhone 4S for instance. For what it is it produces amazingly nice shots and even more amazing video. Combine that with some very fun apps and it can be a pretty fun picture taking experience. The thing that makes them so appealing is that they are ubiquitous. There are times I don't have my cameras with me but far fewer times when I don't have my iPhone. Camera phone photography is a very different animal than shooting with a more traditional camera butI find it can be just as rewarding if I don't treat it like an afterthought. I think more options to create images is a great thing. As far as camera phones spelling the end of low end point and shoots...I agree. Why spend $200 on a single purpose camera when I can spend it one a music player, phone, camera, video camera, palm top computer? For most folks its a simple choice.
 

Lili

Hall of Famer
Oct 17, 2010
Dallas, TX
Lili
I think that the high quality camer phones are not the future they are the now. That's not to say that I will run out and replace my cameras with an iPhone or Android but for a lot of folks its a pretty appealing option. Take the iPhone 4S for instance. For what it is it produces amazingly nice shots and even more amazing video. Combine that with some very fun apps and it can be a pretty fun picture taking experience. The thing that makes them so appealing is that they are ubiquitous. There are times I don't have my cameras with me but far fewer times when I don't have my iPhone. Camera phone photography is a very different animal than shooting with a more traditional camera butI find it can be just as rewarding if I don't treat it like an afterthought. I think more options to create images is a great thing. As far as camera phones spelling the end of low end point and shoots...I agree. Why spend $200 on a single purpose camera when I can spend it one a music player, phone, camera, video camera, palm top computer? For most folks its a simple choice.
I agree entirely
 
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BBW

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
betwixt and between
BB
A friend just forwarded this link to me and it might be of interest to followers of this thread. While I have an iPhone 4S on order, I don't see it replacing any cameras I have but rather I welcome it as a handy, fun and useful addition.

-Jim

Can the iPhone 4S replace a "real" digital camera? Ars investigates
Jim, you beat me to it! I just read my latest email from A Lesser Photographer, thanks to flysurfer's posting the Manifesto (a very worth while read, I have to underscore)...and saw this article. I'm glad you posted it.

As an aside, I hope that Pete - and others - will continue to share there cell phone-o-graphy AKA photography here and realize that a great many of us consider good images good images - no matter what form of camera is used in making them. :drinks:
 

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