Whether you are outdoors doing your day to day routine or if you are finally getting around to the traveling you’ve always wanted to do, one thing you won’t be able to avoid is people bringing out their smartphones. Whether its tourists snapping a view or a piece of art or a party of girls taking a ‘selfie’ on a night out, the smartphone is the layman’s camera whether we like it or not. Yet more and more photographers are throwing out their clunky cameras for the convenience that smartphones offer, but not all phone cameras are equal.
Phone companies on the whole have capitalised on this, and since the need for a good camera on a phone is now standard, the devices built into modern phones are becoming increasingly more elaborate. Just over a decade ago, smartphone cameras would produce sub-par images full of pixels that were incapable of being blown up to bigger sizes. Today blockbuster films (like Soderbergh’s Unsane) capture movie quality footage with nothing but smartphone devices. With camera upgrades inevitable with each new launch, big name companies are breaking new ground when it comes to what’s capable in a phone, but few do this better than Nokia.
Nokia, the Finnish company that have led innovations in phones since the early days of mobile devices. From their recognisable ring tones, customisable covers, to gaming systems that were also phones (See the N-Gage), they have never been deterred by the duality of a phone. In recent years the once leading name in phones has taken a backseat to other brands that dominate the tech headlines, but this hasn’t stopped them from making game changing decisions. By partnering with Zeiss, Nokia has come to create some of the most effective and powerful smartphone cameras in the industry.
Carl Zeiss was instrumental in understanding optics and his company continues his legacy. Nokia made an impressive collaboration when it introduced the Pureview 808 back in 2012, with the Zeiss lens as its main feature in the back this portable piece of kit boasted a 41-megapixel camera. Meanwhile the leading device from smartphone giant Apple was holding up a measly 8 megapixels. This clear leap in optical ability drove photographers to keep en eye on the developer as they were obviously marketing to those more photo literate, while the iPhone was (and remains) the device of the masses.
Early this year Nokia hit phone fans with another photographic marvel. Their upcoming handset (possibly named the Nokia 9) was shown off at a technology show and showcased a feature that has everyone talking – 5 rear cameras. This may seem like a bizarre step at a glance, but photographers are keeping their ear to the ground for what Nokia has in store. Once again using Zeiss lenses it is reported that each of the lenses have a separate function, black and white, telephoto, colour and more all being captured by each impressive lens could mean that the outcome is a photo unlike that which has been seen on a smartphone. Though its not confirmed how exactly it will work its clear by their arrangement along with their IR sensor and flash, that Nokia once again has image capture at the heart of its smartphones, something which bigger brands fail to cater to.