Soon after, I got a Samsung Galaxy Y. That camera was a 2MP, fixed focus unit that produced decent images in well-lit conditions but did an absolutely pathetic job indoors. Moving on, I got another phone with a camera that truly blew me away. HTC makes some of the best cameras on the market, and the One X was surely testimony to that. Images were almost life-like and colors popped without looking over-saturated and fake.
Then came the iPhone.
Ever since the 4S, iPhone cameras have proven themselves to be the best - even amongst professionals looking for a portable DSLR replacement. Apple's recently unveiled iPhone 6 & iPhone 6 Plus have features that many top-notch SLRs lack, like Phase-detection autofocus and such.
Here's how you can get excellent images out of your smartphone:
- Before capturing, make sure that you are using the highest possible resolution, even if it means having an awkward aspect ratio.
- Always enable tap-to-focus. Allowing it to try and autofocus can result in terrible images with the background in focus - not your intended subject!
- Try and avoid using your flash as far as possible. It often leads to washed out colors and exaggerated skin tones.
- Do not zoom in before taking the picture. If you need to, you can always crop out what you don't want in the scene once the image is taken.
- This probably goes without saying, but any layer of dust/fingerprints on the lens can negatively impact your photograph.
- Use the Grid to ensure that you place your subject correctly within the frame.
- Do not always chase megapixels. There are other components in the camera that play an equally important role in deciding how good (or bad) your images turn out to be - sensors, aperture and such.
- Edit - but do NOT add filters. They often make your photo look un-professional. Same applies for blur effects - do not manually add those - just hope your camera can get that done on its own!
Most importantly, watch this TEDx talk by Auditya Venkatesh:
Smartphones are clearly the future of cameras. You realise that every time you see a new smartphone. There is turning back for smartphones to be/have some of the best cameras (and sensors) in the world. The most popular cameras on, say Flickr, are smartphone cameras, not DSLR's.
So the next time you choose to buy a phone, get one with a good camera.... you'll just love taking pictures!