From the early days of mobile phone photography, people have been documenting their daily lives. I was a part of that early generation of mobile photography users.
My how times have changed.
Looking back, those early cameras we were so excited about were so HORRIBLE. The image below was from one of the first color camera enabled phones I had AND this was the max resolution! Images were highly pixelated and the colors were way off at times. Video was even worse!
But, we were thrilled to be able to take ANY pictures, regardless of the quality, without having to carry a camera with us.
To me the most fascinating story is the road we have taken to get where we are. Consumer demand has been and will continue to be the driving force behind mobile innovation. With the growth of social media and our penchant for documenting every aspect of our lives—Instagram foodies, Facebook kid pics, Snapchat sillyness, etc—we demand better quality pictures and video. Apple, Samsung and every other manufacturer race to one up each other in pixel density and HD video. We know where we are, but where have we come from?
Lisa Bettany has an excellent article, The ultimate iPhone camera comparison: How does the iPhone 6s camera compare to every other iPhone generation? that allows you to compare identical images taken with every generation of iPhone. Granted, article focuses only on iPhone hardware, but this still gives us a glimpse into the evolution of mobile photography over the years. Bear in mind, the first iPhone was a major innovation in mobile technology and came to market several years after other manufacturers had been attempting mobile photography. Do you remember Sony Ericsson, Nokia, Motorola and BlackBerry? They were first to market with these capabilities, but lost the innovation race.
Is Mobile Ready?
Even though mobile imaging has come a long way, it still cannot replace dedicated photography and videography equipment in all cases. The image sensors, lens options, battery life and storage are just too limited due to the size of the form factor. But that still doesn’t answer the question. Is mobile ready?
What is the use case?
If we’re needing very high resolution images or images that can only be capture with specialty lenses, then the answer is no.
If we’re needing to produce longer form HD video and marry the video with high quality audio, then the answer is no.
When it makes sense.
These are just some of the cases that are perfect for mobile photography and videography:
- Small group highlights
- Youth group snapshots
- Mission project activities
- Quick Periscope or other live streaming discussions, teasers or updates
- Candid ministry shots from gatherings and events
Mobile is here and mobile is ready…for the right application.