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Technology

7 Megapixel Camera Phone 333

Alex writes "It looks like LG Electronics are planning a 7 Megapixel Camera Phone which to me seems like overkill - but it must be making a few of those digital photography manufacturers pushing out point and shoot digicams a little nervous. Camera phones will never take over DSLRs or serious digital cameras but are we seeing what will be the death of the entry level point and shoot digicam?"
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7 Megapixel Camera Phone

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  • camcorder phone (Score:3, Interesting)

    by osho_gg ( 652984 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:31AM (#10922316)
    So, when do we start seeing phone with camcorder?
    • Re:camcorder phone (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ebsf1 ( 689864 )
      Hmm...they are already out there. What we need are ones with storage space for more than 30 seconds or so.
      • Re:camcorder phone (Score:2, Informative)

        by puhuri ( 701880 )

        For example, Nokia 6630 [nokia.com] records QCIF (174 x 144) video "up to 1 hour". I assume you need large enough RS-MMC. While camera phones, because of their small size, cannot compte with quality of compact cameras or DSLRs, they have the (dis)advantage being always with you.

        If we speak about "real" camcoders, I like to have one with 100 GB 2.5 inch laptop drive. I think it will cost about the same as MiniDV casette unit and would be much more convinient than cassettes. I know there exists some camcorders with



    • The thing is, you don't need to wait until someone-else to design one for you. You can do it yourself.

      The world of electronics has changed. You no longer need to do everything from scratch. The supply-chain of the eletronics is such that there are modules available - and all you need to do is to find a way to put them together.

      If you are interested, read the EDN-type of trade magazines for more info.

    • "So, when do we start seeing phone with camcorder?"

      Nokia 3650s have short video recording capabilities. I have an amusing 10 second clip of my dog teasing my cat. Now that 4 gig CF cards are a reality, we may start seeing something more camcorder'ish in the next 2-3 years. Frankly, I think that's pretty darn cool. It sucks how interesting things happen when your video camera is stowed away in the closet.
  • I think that alot of young people would opt for the camera phone, and therefore not spend the money on a point in shoot.....and a phone. But, I think that our older generation would most definently prefer the standard point and shoot camera seperate from their cell phone. I see it as a decreased market, but not a dead one.
  • A thought (Score:5, Interesting)

    by The Ancients ( 626689 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:35AM (#10922328) Homepage
    How will this affect traffic charges over GPRS or 3G? Will network providers charge more, considering how much more data a 7MP camera will push, in comparison to a 1MP (pretty much the current highest.

    In many places providers have been moving to flatrate, so they better haul ass and make sure they've got 3G (or at leat 2.5G) and the backhaul to carry this off. That and there's the small matter of porn as well...

    • That's the beauty of this phone, isn't it? They can keep the data rate the same -- but if you're going to send 7MB for a photo (OK, 2MB of JPG) you're going to use an awful lot more of it. Ka-ching!

      I figure we'll be a lot more tempted to send those big hi-res pictures than a 50x50 chunk that is supposed to be a beautiful girl at a bar, but comes out looking like Spacecataz on my crappy Sony Ericsson.

    • Actually there is a limit to the number of pixels you can send in an MMS message, the camera would have to round it down to fit the message size.
    • Re:A thought (Score:3, Informative)

      by jettoblack ( 683831 )
      Like all current high-res camera phones, it will likely have a 7MP mode which saves only to the memory card, and a low-res mode (320x240 or maybe 640x480) which can be sent by email.

      I don't know about the current crop of American camera phones, but Japanese camera phones can automatically downsize your pics when you email them.

  • Worrying... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by NiTr|c ( 130325 ) <hackop AT inumbrate DOT net> on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:35AM (#10922329) Homepage
    With the introduction of higher resolution phones like this all over the place what are the privacy implications people face? 7 megapixels is quite clear indeed, and depending on the zoom (if any) you would be able to take some very intense candid photos. Also, as previously mentioned on slashdot, photographing sections of books or magazines in stores could grow in popularity. Depending on memory in the phone, one could walk into a store, snap photos of all the interesting articles of numerous magazines and then leave with a fantastic digital reproduction. So many evil intentions with these things...
    • Re:Worrying... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by The Ancients ( 626689 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:37AM (#10922344) Homepage
      No - what's worrying is the worst 'evil intention' you could come up with is photographing books or magazines :p

      <whispers> there's real people out there, dude...</whispers>

      • Re:Worrying... (Score:3, Interesting)

        by NiTr|c ( 130325 )
        You're most certainly correct. You wonder if these will start getting banned in all types of public areas, similar to cigarettes. I can't say it would surprise me to see the image of a phone with a camera on it in the middle of a red circle with a slash through it. Might just be the next big thing. I smell regulation time!
    • Re:Worrying... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Hido ( 655301 )
      That exact same problem is happening over here in Japan. The way they are combating it is by having the devices make a sound when a picture or video is being taken. That way if your taking a picture of a school girl going up a escalator with a skirt or pictures at a book store "big brother" will know that you are doing it.
      • by OmniVector ( 569062 ) <see my homepage> on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:43AM (#10922370) Homepage
        this guy worries about people taking pictures of magazines, and what comes to mind for you? taking pictures of girls wearing skirts! ahhh slashdot :)
        • Re:Worrying... (Score:3, Informative)

          by Hido ( 655301 )
          The problem is not about taking pictures of girls wearing skirts. Its about people using there phones to take pictures "inside" their skirts. If this happened to be your daughter who was getting pictures taken of would you be very happy as a parent? To me this is a serious privacy issue and not something to be laughed at.
          • Forget the parental fears. Try some more homophobic ones. Imagine being photographed in the changing rooms of your local gym or pool. I've heard that many gyms/pools have outright banned all phones in their changing rooms. Or imagine using the public facilities (Americans are embaressed by the word 'toilet') and having a camera-phone quickly stuck over the door of your stall. How would you like those photos posted on some fetish website?

            Or try similar scenarios with children for some pedophilia-phobia

            • Re:Worrying... (Score:5, Insightful)

              by Wonko ( 15033 ) <thehead@patshead.com> on Friday November 26, 2004 @04:32AM (#10922855) Homepage Journal

              Imagine being photographed in the changing rooms of your local gym or pool. I've heard that many gyms/pools have outright banned all phones in their changing rooms. Or imagine using the public facilities (Americans are embaressed by the word 'toilet') and having a camera-phone quickly stuck over the door of your stall.

              Why is this all of a sudden a big deal when you put the camera on a phone? Small, very concealable cameras have been available for quite a long time.

              Or try similar scenarios with children for some pedophilia-phobia (pedophobia?).

              Yeah, because you can't take pictures of kids with a regular camera...

              Imagine someone re-programming your phone so that it takes a photo every x minutes and secretly sends the images to someone.

              You will have to worry about this in the future just as much as you will have to worry about somebody using your cell phone for voice recording. But they can do that right now... Maybe the paranoid just need a shutter on the camera and a physical mute for the microphone. Maybe you should go work on that mute button right now, eh? :p

              This works better than a hidden camera because you trust your camera-phone. You own it, so you control it. Don't you?

              You own the phone but have no control over the software running on it. The more processing power you put on a phone, the more complex the software will get. The more complex the software gets, the more bugs there will likely be.

              I don't think anyone should be scared of their phone though... If someone wants to snoop on you there are currently much better ways than your cell phone. I'll bet the people who are paranoid about camera phones are the same people who think all the current security at airports "makes us safer" and isn't just there to make the sheep feel like the government is doing something :p.

      • That exact same problem is happening over here in Japan.

        And the reason for a total ban on cameraphones in some Arab state(s).

        The way they are combating it is by having the devices make a sound when a picture or video is being taken.

        Or having the flash enabled by default. A clear 'click' only alerts a victim in a quiet environment like a changing room, but does nothing when used in a disco or on a noisy street.

        Pretty useless if you ask me. As with most 'features' that are meant to keep users honest

        • A minor totaly useless nit, But I think a flash in a disco would just about as noticeable as a beep.

          The rest I agree with, too easy to bypass a flash (swap for a resistor would probably do it), and probably not that hard for a beep depending on implentation.
          Besides a really clever person could even disguise a digital cam so many ways that the one on his/her phone could be just one of many.

          Mycroft
        • but does nothing when used in a disco

          Speaking from experience, I challenge you to get a decent shot in a club with a phone camera. Even when people are posing for it the image is far less than perfect...
      • That way if your taking a picture of a school girl going up a escalator with a skirt or pictures at a book store "big brother" will know that you are doing it.

        "Big brother"? You object to giving the girl the chance to confront the guy?
    • Re:Worrying... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jsgates ( 232994 )
      7 megapixels is only clear if their is a decent lens attached. Given that it's going to be on a cellphone...I'll stick with my 3 megapixel point and shoot, or my 6 megapixel DSLR.
    • Re:Worrying... (Score:2, Informative)

      by Blue_Wombat ( 737891 )
      Not necessarily - 7MP of itself is enough to show detail with very good clarity. However, the system is only as good as its weakest part, and if the lens is still 3-4 millimeter plastic then all the pixels in the worls won't improve the image. I have a Canon G3 with is only 4MP. However, we did some A3 blow-ups of photos at work and mine blew away comparable camera, and some shots from 6MP cameras. The reason was the G3 has great glass - and is both good at resolving images, and being an F2.0 lens can use a
    • "With the introduction of higher resolution phones like this all over the place what are the privacy implications people face?"

      This problem is looming whether phones do it or not. Technology always gets better. The more connected we get, the less privacy we get.

      Is this worrying? Depends on what your values are. The more we dabble in the electronic world,the more evidence we leave of our existence. What do we do? We adjust. Let's say, for example, that naked photos of everybody start popping up.
  • by I kan Spl ( 614759 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:38AM (#10922347) Homepage
    From the article "'LG Electronics' spokesman comfirmed Thursday, "LG is considering the development of 6- or 7 -megapixel camera phone with Japanese companies including Canon." LG does this pretty often... I would be surprised if they have done anything more than blueprinting at this point. The company I work with deals in their products, and quite often they annouce the product like three or four years before they even have a working prototype...
  • Optics (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jessohyes ( 175502 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:39AM (#10922351) Homepage
    What people don't realize is that the optics are just as important as the megapixel count. I'd take a two megapixel camera with a nikon lens over a 7 megapixel camera phone any day.
    • Also, the zoom would probably be digital and not optical.

      The funny thing is that this appears to be in consideration, not development or ready for sale:

      "LG is considering the development of 6- or 7 -megapixel camera phone with Japanese companies including Canon."
    • Re:Optics (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jsgates ( 232994 )
      Just as important? I'd say more so. If your lens doesn't focus properly, reproduce colors/etc, no amount of megapixels will save it. Sorta like sticking an EF 28-90 on a 1Ds MKII...what a waste. I'll stick with my canon L glass where I can.
      • Re:Optics (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        WHAT? Nikon ED, bitch! (and one of the more underground holy wars comes to light on /. at last)
      • > If your lens doesn't focus properly, reproduce colors/etc, no amount of megapixels will save it.

        Not true! If you have the camera's point spread function (or a way to estimate it) you can restore an out of focus shot with a deconvolution operation. Here's [logicnet.dk] bit of software which can do such an operation. The web page includes an example. A further example is the image processing [stsci.edu] which was done on Hubble when its mirror was found to be the wrong shape.

    • Right on. I would add to this that the quality of the CCD and the image software makes a huge difference as well. I recently bought a Casio z40 and while I love it for the features the images are not nearly as good as my old Nikon 950. Dark noise, sharpness and "bloom" are all much worse in the 4MP Casio than the 3MP Nikon.
    • Exactly. I work in television and appreciate the value of a good lens, which is usually more expensive than the camera head, epsecially when you're talking about the big sports lenses with tons of zoom.
    • Megaplixes has become the "goodness" number for people and there's little that can be done about it. People want a simple number that can sum up how good or bad something is as compared to other things. IQ, horsepower, MHz, all the same thing. People latch onto a number and try to use it as a general purpose rating.

      Not supprising, either. Optics are comlpex to explain. I can't give a single number that tells you if it's better or not. The closest thing is bigger, but people don't want a big lense.

      So you a
    • they need an arbitrary numbering system for the lenses on these things, so that maybe the cell phone camera manufacturers can point at it and say "Look! Our camera is better. It has a 5X SuperImage(TM) lens!" Then perhaps there will be some advancement in the lens quality front on these things, instead of just upping the resolution but not image quality.
  • Now they will ask you to check your cell phone at the ticket counter when you go into the movie theatre.
    • Keep it in your pocket, we can't tell. Seriously, with how small these phones are, us ticket-tearers can't really tell if you even have one on you.

      "Yea... um... I need you to empty out your pockets... Why? You may.. um... have a cellphone in there. While you're at it, might as well take your pants off."
  • Move along... (Score:3, Informative)

    by shikra ( 751390 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:42AM (#10922366) Journal

    Nothing to see here, Samsung already has a 5-megapixel digital camera [mobileburn.com] available [samsung.com].

    And it has a sliding cover ala the Matrix phone to boot.

  • I know very little about digital cameras. I've never been much of a picture-taker, and the last camera I bought (a fairly nice, though entirely unprofessional, one) has sat in a closet for years, if I still even have it. I'd never buy a phone for the camera feature.

    However, with the typical day-after-Thanksgiving sales tomorrow, one of the local superstores has HP's entry-level model, the Photosmart 435 3.1 megapixel, for less than $50. I'm going to pick one up. It's certainly not the best, but it's a camera, and it'll shoot 4x6's just fine.

    The point is, I don't care about a feature, and I don't look for a phone that'll minimize the number of gadgets I have---especially since I don't even know if I'll use a digital camera. This won't be the beginning of the end of entry-level digital cameras, because the entry-level ones are the ones people get when they don't even know if they want one. This could be the end of gadget-lovers buying them. This could even be the end of the "high-end entry-level" position.

    But some people will just want an entry-level camera, without paying for a cell phone.

  • by mattkime ( 8466 )
    7MP might sound like a lot, but I have a hard time believing that it would look as good as a 3 MP point and shoot.

    Its the lens!

    While your phone can get smaller and smaller and still function as a phone - not so with a camera. Bigger lenses have better optical quality and larger sensors give better detail. Further, if I can carelessly shove it into my pocket, its unlikely the lens will even stay clean.

    I don't think we'll see the day when phones are compared based on image quality. (...but I'm not betting
    • Obviously the phone won't be as good as a dedicated camera with a proper lens.

      At the end of the day though they may be "good enough" for most purposes that the extra expense and hassle of carrying around a seperate low(ish) end "happy snap" digital just doesn't seem worth it. I wonder how close we are to that now. I know the camera in my Nokia 7250i is pretty much useless but I'm sure there are better camera phones these days.
    • Further, if I can carelessly shove it into my pocket, its unlikely the lens will even stay clean.

      That's one reason why I went for the Samsung E800 when I recently got a new phone. It slides open/shut to reveal/hide the keypad, and when shut, the camera lens is protected by the battery compartment. It's not perfect, but it's a whole lot better than being permanently exposed.

      I don't think we'll see the day when phones are compared based on image quality.

      Maybe not by the maufacturers (although most try t
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:45AM (#10922376)
    Because people are stupid and can't understand more than a single simple measure for a camera (or any other piece of technical equipment) the camera with the most megapixels wins. This is what sells these ridiculous camera phones despite the fact that you don't need more than 2 megapixels for an A4 print and most of these camera phone snaps won't be shown at higher than 320x240 res anyway.

    Those phones have shitty lenses too, so the results are crap anyway. Sigh.
  • by Dancin_Santa ( 265275 ) <DancinSanta@gmail.com> on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:45AM (#10922384) Journal
    The fact is that in order to improve the quality of a digital photo, the CCD or CMOS must be enlarged. The smaller the area of the sensor is, the more crowded it becomes for each photosite.

    Have you ever taken a digital picture with some bright point in it and seen a white stripe from that point up to the top of the picture? That is a CCD photosite area getting overloaded and spilling over into adjoining areas. It NEVER happens with film because film does not rely on electricity to save the image.

    The way to avoid this and other digital 'noise' is to put more space between each photosite, which of course requires either less photosites (like cutting sensors by 1/3 by using Foveon) or increasing the sensor area.

    If you want Foveon, you will be paying out the nose for it.

    If you want a larger area, you had better be prepared to upgrade the lens as well as the camera body. Thicker body and wider lens, IOW.

    A phone has a limited amount of volume that it can grow to. Current phones may seem small, but operators are loath to accept larger phones. So even though this LG phone may sport 7 megapixels, it is unlikely that it will be rendering pictures with any sort of acceptable quality.

    7 megapixels of noise is still noise.
    • Not always in the real world at the moment though - with DSLR's anyway.

      i.e. the Canon 20d has 8mp, but is only on a 1.6x sensor and has the best noise / high iso qualities out of all the DSLR's at the moment. Better than the (larger) 1.5x, 1.3x and 1.0x sensors.

      As much as I dislike the Canon bodies (looks fondly at Nikon kit) it's the truth at the moment.

      One of my cameras is a Kodak SLR/N which is a larger sensor - full frame, and though it's absolutely stunning below 400 ISO, above that the Canon 20d sp
  • lame (Score:3, Interesting)

    by pHatidic ( 163975 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:46AM (#10922388)
    what would really impressive me is if LG came out with a phone without a camera at all. I would kill for a black and white razor phone without a camera (i know i know its motorola but still)
  • by ewhac ( 5844 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:54AM (#10922417) Homepage Journal

    Has anyone checked the current cell carrier-imposed limits on MMS messages? Last I heard it was something below 200KiB (and probably as little as 75KiB). Now, unless you're taking a picture of an evenly-lit solid white wall, there aren't many seven megapixel images I can think of that will crunch down into 200KiB.

    So unless the cell carriers are going to allow the phone to hook directly up to a PC (fat chance; they can't bill for that), seven megapixels seems a trifle huge for a phone.

    Schwab

    • Has anyone checked the current cell carrier-imposed limits on MMS messages?

      The last time I sent one (2 weeks ago?) it was 90KB.

      So unless the cell carriers are going to allow the phone to hook directly up to a PC (fat chance; they can't bill for that)

      Huh? I wouldn't even consider buying a phone (especially with a camera) that couldn't be connected to a PC. In fact, I don't think I'd be *able* to do so even if I wanted to. If it doesn't have Bluetooth and/or IR, chances are it'll have some custom data p
  • by laughingcoyote ( 762272 ) <barghesthowlNO@SPAMexcite.com> on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:55AM (#10922422) Journal

    Really, the way people seem attached to their cellphones, I'm surprised Samsung isn't working on a way to hardwire the thing to someone's head. I really doubt if anyone would be able to take the phone away from their ear long enough to take a picture.

  • by Razzak ( 253908 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @01:57AM (#10922433)
    ...a lot of it is about the lense.

    For example, my 1 megapixel v710 looks like complete ass. Its photos are dark and worst of all very, VERY grainy.

    DigiCams still have another 3-5 years left in'em.
    • DigiCams still have another 3-5 years left in'em

      Oh? And what, pray tell, will replace them? There is no way we are going back to chemical film-- the media costs, processing time, and lack of easily transmitted imagery have killed that whole scene (except for professionals and studios shooting on the big box cameras).

      Do you realize that the vast majority of amatuer photography are people taking snaps of their friends, sports events, gaudy frontages in Vegas, or the big donut in LA?

      I am assuming you are
    • I think thy have plenty longer than that. Barring any revolutionary discoveries, there's no way around the basic laws of physics that govern optics. It boils down to the fact that you need a large lense to get a good picture, way too large to fit on a phone. Good ones are larger than the phone.

      The little camera on the phone isn't intended to be a replacement for a good digital camera, it's inteded to let you have the ability to take simple pictures whenever you have your phone with you (which most people a
  • I think there needs to be a new spec for camera phones.

    Number of photos transmittable/cell phone battery charge.

    At 7MP per pic, even on the fastest of cellular networks, how long would it take to transmit the entire picture to another cell phone?

    (I'm assuming "thumbnails" would be transmitted to other phones, but still...)
  • an idea... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:02AM (#10922448)
    What would really be cool is if they could split the camera off from the phone and just sell both separately. For instance without the components necessary for the phone to function, you could add more sophisticated photography features like a bigger lens or a more buffer space. I see a big marketing opportunity here.
  • by sahonen ( 680948 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:06AM (#10922460) Homepage Journal
    When you are putting a tiny, sub-optimal lens in front of a CCD the size of your fingernail, then trying to fix 7,000,000 pixels on it, your image is *going* to look like crap. For best image quality, you need to funnel as much light onto each pixel as possible. That means a larger lens, a larger CCD, and a smaller pixel count. That's why broadcast television cameras are so large.
    • We're all working on the premise that they will use the smallest lens possible. What if they manage to cram the phone electronics around the photo circuitry, have a decent sized lens (optical zoom could be hard to get), and have a lens cover to protect the vulnerable bits.

      The form factor for a point and shoot is largely based around what is easy to carry and hold as a camera (and battery size).

      I'm not a phone engineer but it can't be impossible to do
      • Once you do that it's more of a camera than a phone, isn't it?

        Personally I'd rather have things integrate over a network rather than have all the functions stuffed into one gadget. It would be nice if my digital camera could send things out over my cell phone and that my PDA/address book could initiate calls over the phone and also display photos from the camera, etc.
  • cat got my tongue (Score:3, Insightful)

    by atari2600 ( 545988 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:19AM (#10922495)
    Camera phones will never take over DSLRs or serious digital cameras but are we seeing what will be the death of the entry level point and shoot digicam Wow - that's gotta be the observation of the centry.

    Of course they wont - it is like saying that a laptop can never take over the Ipod even though the laptop might have a cutting edge audio-subsystem built into it. Where is the slashdot i used to read and enjoy?
  • by doormat ( 63648 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:22AM (#10922506) Homepage Journal
    Even with the new megapixel phones, the picture quality is crapola. They need a 10-fold increase in the quality of the lens/optics before they start ramping to 4, 5 or 7MP.
    • People have latched onto megapixels as the "goodness" rating of a digital camera. More MP = more good in their mind. So, the phone companies are jumping on board and releasing higher MP cameras. It'll sell.
  • by toby ( 759 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:27AM (#10922527) Homepage Journal
    But I suspect a camera will always take a better picture than a telephone. For the same reason, I go to a restaurant to eat great food instead of catching a plane.
  • for those photo bloggers [slashdot.org].
  • I'd take a 4M pixel phone, with 256M of memory, and decent optics. I think the industry needs to make decent 2-4M pixel camers first, and sell a bunch. My Sanyo has about a 1.2M pixel in it and the pictures are, well, just this side of crummy.
  • by Omega697 ( 586982 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @02:40AM (#10922565)
    I would gladly accept a lower resolution on my camera phone if the lens would be better. There's no way they're going to sell me an N-megapixel camera on my phone until it comes with a decent lens. My 4 year old Olympus digital still takes pictures that look better than ANY camera phone I've seen, and that's all because it has a decent lens. The problem with the camera phone industry is that it is suffering from the same problem as the CPU industry was - for CPUs it was all about MHz, now it's all about megapixels.
  • If they ship something with optics suitable for an imager that big (which means a lens about 2cm in diameter), this would be quite useful for press photographers.

    If they ship it with a dinky lens, the exposure times will be too long for a handheld device.

  • One gigapixel? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rice_burners_suck ( 243660 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @03:21AM (#10922658)
    Well if your camera phone is gonna be a 7 megapixel, then maybe the new DSLRs of the next few years will be, like, 100 megapixel.

    That would be cool, because you could shoot film-quality photographs at poster size if you wanted.

    I can't wait until the first gigapixel camera. Which reminds me of the time an old friend of mine and I were talking about computers. I had a whole whopping 150 megs of hard drive space. Your cheapest computer today comes with more megs of RAM than that. He was a hard core computer geek, though, and he had around 300 megs of hard drive space. I thought that was a ridiculously large hard drive. It seemed like an endless amount of space that would never fill up completely. Anyway, he told me about this guy who had a "gigabyte", pronouncing the first "G" in "gigabyte" like the "G" in "giant"... Nobody pronounces "gigabyte" like that anymore. I was like, "What the hell is a gigabyte?" He said something along the lines of, "I don't know, but it's a LOT of space!" I was like, "Holy shit." Nowadays the cheapest hard drive has like 20 gigabytes, and most computers come with at least 40. And that space fills up so fast with applications and junk that it's not enough. I can't believe that shit.

    So I can't wait until the first gigapixel camera. Shit, you'll be able to shoot a 60' by 40' photograph and get film-quality results. We could send that thing to like Mars or something.

  • I'm not satisfied that they've got the 'phone' right, yet. I mean, seriously, until I can make a CLEAR call, and communicate with some semblence of quality, I don't want them cramming more shit into my phone. Having one is bad enough, but that's for work purposes, mostly. I'd rather not have them try to make two devices, and fail to do a quality job with either.

    Now, I will admit that I would be highly interested in a camera/phone/PDA, that can take photos, store images/information/phone clips even on an SD
  • This is great news. I can't wait for this technology to come to the States in 4 years.
  • ... I think that 5 megabit pixel will be the norm in five years... with some models including built-in software to automatically correct distorted images due to dirty lenses (remember that the "eye" of such a cell phone will be very exposed to potential physical damage, dirt, etc.
  • I know many people here are saying its the optics that really matter, and they just want a phone without a camera, etc.

    I can respect what you say, but the vast majority of people just want a simple decent resolution camera that they are practically guaranteed to have on them at all times.

    Now, for all you non-photo people out there, a cellphone is probably the electronic device you are most likely to carry around with you everywhere. I know that instead of a new digital camera, I'm looking for a camera phon

  • "... are we seeing what will be the death of the entry level point and shoot digicam?"
    Not anytime soon. There are still people that just use a phone for calling people. Not to make a sandwich with.
    All these features (for which you have to pay a small fortune, just for the data transfer if you use the phone for these things) are wrecking the batteries. I hear people that have to recharge their phones every other day, and in the manual is stated that it is not a luxury to buy a new battery every 6 months !!
  • I have posted a comment like this in the past, but it's more relevant here:

    Adding a 7 megapixel camera to a phone has been done mainly for marketing reasons. People who don't know anything will see the bigger number and think that it's better. The problem is, you need VERY decent optics to take advantage of a sensor with a 5 megapixel resolution. The TINY lenses that you will *always* get in a camera phone (unless you want your phone to be the size of a brick) will never be able to do justice to a 7mp CCD
  • Combination devices rarely work. We have the technology to combine the functionality of cameras, PDAs, cell phones, MP3 players, etc. into a single unit. But people still buy the individual devices. Why? Because a camera designed to be a camera- nothing more and nothing less- will always be better (in terms of performance vs. price/ease of use/portability) than a camera which has to simultaneously try to be a cell phone/swiss army watch or whatever.

    The trend is obvious: it's towards MORE single-function de

  • by InadequateCamel ( 515839 ) on Friday November 26, 2004 @08:13AM (#10923548)
    Megahertz sell computers, and megapixels sell cameras; this shouldn't surprise anyone here.

    Just so long as these marketing cretins don't forget that some people JUST WANT A FREAKING CELL PHONE and don't need cameras and milk steamers and tazers built into their phones, I couldn't care less about what crap parents buy to appease their children.

    /cranky after just waking up

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