The Connected Camera: Imaging News from CTIA ‘08
With 5 megapixels, on-board editing, zooms, flashes, and slots ready for 8G (or more) memory cards, many of the premium cellphones on display at CTIA ‘08 have better camera specs than the first few generations of digital cameras ever had. But phone manufacturers are betting that it’s an easy upload experience, not a feature set, which will finally convince consumers to use a cellphone as their primary imaging device.
Nokia recently introduced a media sharing service called Ovi which allows users to upload 100 different file types (directly from smartphones) to a totally-free site offering unlimited storage. In terms of photographs, Ovi will operate much like Flickr, offering an online address for people to post and comment on images. Other phone manufacturers are expanding their partnerships with Flickr, Blogger, YouTube and other user-generated content sites, all with the intent of making it a one-step “lean back experience” to take a picture and post it immediately, avoiding the computer all together.
The enV2, a stylish multi-media phone just launched by LG, is a great example of an experience-oriented camera/handset combo. The evV2 has a white balance feature, a self-timer, and an image editor which will rotate, crop or zoom a photo, and it makes a “shutter sound” when you press the phone’s photo button. Once the user has a photo they like, they can use Bluetooth to wirelessly send the shot to a computer or printer. They can also “picture message” the shot to a friend’s phone.