Monday, September 28, 2009

Did the "Chicken and Egg Problem" just made way for the "Phone or Camera Puzzle" ?

More often than not, I have been in occasions when I wished I had my camera with me. Let's face it, not many people carry a camera in their pocket everywhere they go (even Point and Shoot). On the other hand, most people carry a camera phone in their pocket.

So far, camera phones have not been able to match even the most basic Point and Shoot (PnS) camera in terms of features as well as image quality. While some of the latest camera phones are equipped with 1/2.5", comparable to many PnS cameras, phones lose out when it comes to lenses. Many of the current phones are equipped with mere pinhole-camera like lenses instead of the extending lenses of many PnS.

Here comes the SCH-W880. Finally one company, Samsung, decides to put some full fledged PnS quality features in a 3G phone (or vice versa). While this is not new, Casio released a phone version of the Exilim camera earlier, the Samsung phone is a full fledged 3G phone with a heavy weight 12mpx camera sensor. The Exilim phone has very basic 2G phone functionality and a less impressive 5mpx camera.

Efforts for device convergence have definitely taken a quantum leap.

- Model No. M8920 or SCH-W880
- 3G (UMTS)
- Bluetooth
- 720p HD Video at 30fps
- 3x Optical Zoom (with extending lens), 35mm-105mm Full Frame Equivalent
- Flash LED light (AF Assist?)
- Xenon Flash
- 3.3" AMOLED Screen
- 12Mpx sensor (Same as Pixon 12, Size:1/2.3")
- P,M, Auto, SCN, HD Mode Dial
- Dedicated Shutter Button
- Zoom lever around shutter button
- 115.8 x 56.9 x 16.3 mm

Updated: From new information that the camera starts from 6.3mm - 18.9mm and that of Pixon12 to be 4.9mm (28mm equiv), I deduce that the sensor in this phone is 1/2.3". This is unusually larger than most other camera phones and larger than many PnS. Sensor Size : 6.16 x 4.62 mm Crop Factor: 5.62x F-Stop: f3.0-f5.6 ( little slow)

This definitely looks more than a camera with phone features rather than a phone with camera features. One gripe I have with regards to this phone is the size, which looks rather big for a camera phone. If you see it as a PnS camera with phone function however, it is as tiny as it gets :-)


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