It’s no secret that photography has meant a few different things over the years, since the early ages of Black & White up until the DSLR and camera phone years. From questionable chemicals, to Single Lens Technologies and Digital View Finders, we’ve seen a lot of changes over the years. The latest leap in technology came from the relatively recent transition from SLRs to DSLRs in the 1980s. Some people still argue about which of the two mediums is best for taking those so called ” professional shots”.
Well that debate can now be put to rest as it seems like the photography world is facing increasing competition to…smartphones. The term photograph is now an universal term that can be attributed to whoever takes pictures with their Iphones, Android smartphone, or Windows Phone ( Sorry, Blackberry fans) . If you haven’t noticed, it might be high time to look around and notice that people are snapping pictures every second of every day at any given time or place . The acquisition of Instagram by Facebook is one more proof of the influence that those smartphones have on our current world. The competition that heavyweights like Canon, Nikon, Sony and Olympus are facing today is not from other camera makers but from companies like Apple, HTC, Nokia, Samsung, Motorola and others. Yes, it remains true that many of the sensors used in those smartphones are being made by Sony and others like Leica. But that’s a different subject that I will not dabble into in this post.
So, the reason is quite simple. There are more than 1 billion smartphones on the planet. And whoever says smartphone, says camera and apps. The cost of a smartphone is going down every time a new handset comes out. Your smartphone is always connected to the internet, making it possible for you to share your pictures to your social entourage online. The resolution of the pictures smartphones take is getting better with every new generation. Plus, you always have your phone on you. Now all those arguments blow out of the water any reason, anyone might have to buy a Point & Shoot Camera. Point & Shoot used to be the recreational camera by excellence, but they could only do one thing: Snap pictures. And if you were unlucky enough, your grandparents would forget to take out that memory card ( If they even knew what that is) and transfer the pictures to your computer. And that’s where most of those pictures will always be: On your computer; unable to be shared or forgotten while on a smartphone, you could share any picture within seconds on your phone, because there’s an app for that.
Instagram for instance lets you take pictures and share them on the go, in seconds, eliminating the need for you to transfer the pictures to your computer and what not. It’s easy, fast and convenient and that’s what the world is all about today. Point & Shoots sales are sinking and it’s easy to see why. How is this new competition going to affect the DSLR market? That’s one question left up in the air. But I am willing to bet, that within years, the menace will be brought to professional DSLR shooters. If you still doubt it you can always see for yourself what a certain Nokia phone announced in Barcelona back in March, can do HERE . It’s a 42 Megapixel phone with excellent Noise Quality. I even doubt the ability of my Canon 60D to render some of those shots like the Nokia did. A new era is coming and any smart pro photographer should probably be bracing for the new wave of inspired phone shooters coming to this once, sacred world of photography.
P.S: All shots in this post, come from a sub $200Motorola smartphone. One can only imagine the possibilities.