Smartphone cameras have been developing rapidly in the past three years. We’ve seen megapixels rise to an unusable amount for the tiny lenses in iPhones, we’ve seen Nokia announce the Lumia 1020 with a ridiculous 41mp camera, which is above many single use digital lenses, then, in the afternoon of September 4th, Sony announced that they are developing wireless lens that will weigh less than 400g, attach to their smart phones and offer a much more powerful zoom, bigger lens size. It’s a slightly less formidable pixel count, at 20.7MPs, but any photographer worth his film will know that pixels aren’t everything when it comes down to picture quality.
What does this mean for casual photographers?
Being able to divide the bit you hold and the bit that sees the picture means a lot for people who want good photos but don’t want to lug round a short-life DSLR on the off chance a photo op will appear. These photographers are more common now that food porn, sunset clichés, and selfies have become a regular commodity amongst all ages.
The advantages for this crowd is huge, and that’s the initial market Sony want to break into with the WX10 lens for the Sony Z1.
Does it mean the end for pro cameras?
It almost certainly does. While we aren’t there yet, it seems obvious that in a decade or so the processors on smartphones will be enough to handle their daily duties alongside having huge picture files sent remotely via these advanced, clip-on lenses.
Because of the time period inbetween now and that end goal, these wireless lenses aren’t really the funeral for DSLR, but they are definitely a few shovels of dirt preparing the grave for them.
What does this mean for pro photographers?
For the pros in outdoor photography, and even for the studio photographers at places like www.venturephotography.com, there is nothing to worry about yet. Lens sizes, changeability and zoom power is still a long way from being matched, so we’re likely to spend along while yet with what we know.
If phone cameras are getting better…
There is a debate going on that discusses whether the professional camera market will just keep advancing at the same level. Because this is all based on technological advancement, some people say that it will happen in actual cameras and not just phones. The problem with theory is that there is currently a lot more money going into smartphone development, so any technology that’s useful in both sectors will probably be introduced with a retrofit rather than original tech.
Disclosure: This is a guest post.