Double the Lenses, Double the Fun?
The next wave of smartphones are making their way to the hands of consumers this year.
And as it is every year, new features, upgrades, and surprises are making the tech headlines. One innovation that’s been circulating in the gadget world is the use of dual-lenses in smartphones. (As if single lenses are not enough to take a selfie!) This was first presented in the 2014 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.
In recent years, smartphones have been working on camera quality, a feature that was much left with DSLRs and point-and-shoots. But the “smartness” of a phone is its ability to multitask, and now, they’re powerful enough to replace stand alone camera devices. Well, consumers have waited two years and finally, they’re here.
Several tech giants have already rolled out new smartphones with dual-camera features like Huawei and LG. Some have expressed developments over this innovation like Sony, while rumors have been circulating about Apple’s use of dual-camera lenses in the iPhone 7.
As to how they will play out in the consumer market remains to be seen. But for sure, trying out a snapper with two eyes is capturing the interest of consumers. And here are two of them.
This one is from China’s top mobile manufacturer, Huawei. The P9 is their top bet against Samsung’s Galaxy S Series and Apple’s iPhone. This unlikely competitor was fairly unknown several years ago. But now, it has moved from the budget market to the high-end niche market usually dominated by Samsung and Apple.
The P9 is still fresh from the oven as it was officially released to the consumer market just a few weeks ago. The product is currently gaining a lot of interest not only because it features a dual-lens camera; it’s also because it’s co-created by renowned German optics company Leica. Every photographer knows that Leica is a highly respectable company, over a century old now, and has gained popularity for its rangefinder cameras.
Today, it has paired up with Huawei for the P9. But is it any good?
Huawei claims that the P9 is by far the only smartphone that can capture the best and most detailed photos in the market. It’s a pretty huge claim but it seems that they’re dead serious about it. Its power is right in the 12-megapixel dual lenses at the rear which operates in different ways. One captures color while the other captures in monochrome. In such a set-up, the benefits are dual as well, i which one lens works on the colors while the second one works on the details. The zooming power of the P9 is also done by both lenses, promising high zoom quality and less of the blurred images. Another interesting feature is its capacity to snap photos in poor lighting conditions. Huawei claims that it can take photos in low light 90% better than a Samsung phone and 270% better than the iPhone 6s. Again, a pretty huge claim that arouses the interests of consumers.
Another contender in this playing field is a release from the Korean tech company, LG. Like the P9, the LG G5 is slated as a formidable alternative to Samsung and Apple. Also fresh from the factory, the G5 boasts a slew of features which are quite impressive. It has a slide out battery design and a pretty sleek form. But it’s biggest asset can particularly be found in its camera features.
First off, the G5 boasts a 16-megapixel camera sensor and an 8-megapixel wide angle sensor. What this means is that the smartphone is capable of snapping photos up to a width of 135 degrees. That’s put to good use when you want to squeeze in probably 20 or more people in one photo or if you want to take a picture of a stunning landscape. The dual lenses also work together to capture great photos even while zooming in or out. The G5 also allows users to go into manual mode: meaning you can adjust the shutter speed of the phone camera and the white balance as well.
Added features include “popout,” where standard shot images are superimposed to wide-angle images to create the popout effect. There is also multiview where the camera at the rear and at the front snap at the same time and put together like a collage.
Even though the G5 isn’t making any bold claims in terms of its camera performance, the device is has been receiving some good feedback with regards to its camera.
Joining the Bandwagon?
No official word has come out yet from Apple but the rumor mill is saying that the California-based company might just throw in a dual-camera feature as well in the upcoming iPhone 7.
Though this is just the first round of the dual-lens competition, a lot more developments are expected to emerge in the coming months.