Can Smartphones Kill The Point & Shoot?
Like a good mobile nerd, I was up and reading about the HTC One this morning. After sifting through the usual mountain of newer and better specs, I came across something I actually found interesting. HTC has elected to go with a 4 Megapixel camera. Nowadays when the average consumer is looking for a camera, whether it’s in a phone or a Point and Shoot, they’re always looking for that magic Megapixel number. The thing most folks don’t realize is that bigger isn’t necessarily better. There are a multitude of elements that play a role in the quality of a photo. I’m not going to get into the ins and outs of photography because my knowledge on the subject is intermediate at best. What I wanted to touch on and discuss was the idea that the quality of a mobile photo could be a big enough factor to buy a Smartphone and disregard a Point & Shoot.
I love to take photos. I typically have my Point & Shoot (which I actually hate and am looking to replace) with me at any given time. Of course I also take a ton of photos with my iPhone4S. I’m generally happy with my mobile photos so long as there’s sufficient light. This becomes a major issue at night, especially for me as I blog at restaurants. The flash in my 4s, and just about any Smartphone for that matter is AWFUL! You might as well carry around a conventional flashlight for all the good it’ll do. Whenever a new phone drops, I look to the camera first. In this day and age, the specs from one phone to another will only have a small variance. However, if the camera stands out, it immediately pulls me in.
When I saw the 4MP camera on the HTC One, it caught my eye. Without getting into the photo nerdy details, they took the approach of having less megapixels that are larger in size than the average MP. They call them UltraPixels. The UP is 2x larger in size than MP. As a result, they take in more light. The bottom line to the average user? You get better night time shots and more defined/less blurry photos. I want better night time shots. I don’t ever want to use the garbage flash in the average Smartphone. I never want to carry my P&S with me if it can be avoided. It left me wondering:
“It it enough to buy another phone?”
Is the cost of a new phone enough to warrant never having to use a P&S again? The average mid – high P&S runs around $400. That’s 1/2 the cost of the HTC One. If the photos are closely comparable, I think there’s strong value in buying another Smartphone (assuming you were looking to upgrade). Obviously this premise doesn’t apply to people who don’t take photos or have little regard for the quality of their shots. However, if you’re like me and love taking photos and want the best shot for the least cost, then it’s something worth thinking about. I’m not big enough into photography to warrant buying and lugging around an SLR. I still want the best for the least.
So what do you all think? Is a new Smartphone worth the cost of never buying another Point & Shoot?