Infotrend’s image capture forecast for 2017 estimates that 1.2 trillion digital photographs will be made using smartphones this year. Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram were all developed to share user-generated photos and videos. This year more than ever, it’s obvious that smartphone cameras are a top priority for every mobile software and hardware company that aims to compete.
Camera-centric Mobile Apps
On April 1st, Microsoft introduced a new iOS (yes, that’s Apple iOS) app called Sprinkles. Sprinkles is a teen-friendly photo editing app with image decorating features such as emojis, stickers and captions. It also leverages Microsoft’s machine learning and AI tools for face-detection and celebrity doppelganger matching (you read that correctly, too). Less than a week later, on April 6th, Apple introduced Clips. Clips is a simple video editing app that allows users to piece together content and apply emojis, text and various effects before sharing their creations on social media.
Photo Editing at Your Fingertips
In-phone photo-editing isn’t just for entertainment purposes either. Many professional bloggers, writers and even photographers use their phones to polish their images before putting them on display. With apps like Snapseed, Prisma and Mendr, users can create professional quality edits in a matter of minutes without knowing anything about Photoshop. With Mendr, users don’t even have to edit the photos themselves. They simply request their changes and send the photo off to a crowd-sourced group of photo editors who will fix the image and send it right back to their device.
Smartphone Cameras are Competing with Actual Cameras
The major device manufacturers have been stumbling over one another in order to produce the most enviable camera a smartphone can contain, too. Today, nearly all smartphone cameras have face-detection, image stabilization and more than 10 megapixels at their disposal. In fact, the Sony Xperia XZ has a 23MP camera. Many professional-grade digital cameras on the market only have 22!
Complimentary, Higher-Resolution Screens
But there’s so much more to mobile cameras and image sharing than the camera alone. Screen size and resolution are also major factors. This is evident thanks to the curved screen on the new Galaxy S8, rumors of a button-free, OLED screen on the unreleased Apple iPhone 8, and Google’s massive investment in a new screen for the next Pixel. In fact, Google “…offered to invest at least 1 trillion won (£706 million) in LG Display Co., in order to secure a stable supply of flexible OLED screens for the next version of the Pixel,” according to South Korea’s Electronic Times.
Needless to say, the company that finds the right mix of digital camera, high definition display, functionality and desirable branding, wins. We’re curious to see if Apple will be edged out of its top spot by the time 2018 rolls around.
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