5-megapix 'iPhone 4' set for June?
Under test today
The fourth generation iPhone has already been spotted in the wild. It will debut on June 28. It will have a 5-megapixel camera. And it will contribute to the 40-45 million iPhones that Apple plans to sell next year.
Or so says a flurry of recent reports.
From MacRumors comes word than one iPhone developer has spotted a reference to "iPhone 4" in their Pinch Media analytics report. Pinch Media supplies devs with info that, among other things, tells them upon what operating systems their mobile apps are running. The appearance of iPhone 4 - an ID first reported last week by The Boy Genius Report - indicates that some Cupertino engineer out there is walking around with a next-gen iPhone.
Of course - as MacRumors is quick to concede - such reports and logs aren't difficult to falsify. But the timing is just about right for test units to be out and about. Mark us down as cautiously intrigued.
Last year, the event calendar at San Francisco's Moscone Center gave the first hints as to the dates of Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference, which has been the coming-out party for iPhone upgrades.
This year, the same calendar lists a "Corporate Event" for June 28 through July 2. A) that vague event title is what Apple used last year to ineffectively mask its WWDC dates, B) the month is iPhone June, and C) the length of the event is appropriate for WWDC.
Although next to nothing has been mooted about the next-gen iPhone, a Wednesday report by the Taiwanese market-watchers at DigiTimes gets the ball rolling. According to DT's "industry sources," the manufacturer of the 3.2-megapixel camera in the iPhone 3GS has secured orders from Apple for 40 to 45 million 5-megapixel cameras for the next-gen iPhone model which, the rumor-mongers monger, "will hit shelves sometime during the second half of 2010."
A 5-megapixel camera would be a nice step up, but note for a moment that 40 to 45 million figure - that's double the 20 to 21 million 3.2-megapixel cameras that the supplier, OmniVision, sold to Cupertino this year.
While the iPhone's popularity is certainly growing, a doubling in sales in the next year may be a tad optimistic. It's entirely possible that some of those tens of millions of digital cameras will find themselves homes in another device - perhaps the increasingly inevitable iPad. ®
resolution != image quality
But what's the point? The image quality in the current iPhone is limited by its poor optics rather than by its image sensor. The effective resolution of my 3GS pictures is significantly worse than those from my ancient 1.5 Mpx Sony digital still camera, which I still use for technical documentation.
Unless Apple gets serious about the lens (and flash, for that matter) -- think Sony Satio -- iPhone image quality is going to remain squarely in amateurish YouTube territory.
There's some tetchy people out there, who the F needs all those pixels and a lens like a piece of crap passing next to no light and has serious aberrations built in.
But photographs! - Give me a break.
My iPhone has in more than a year taken about 100 snapshots, meanwhile my camera does that many in a short shooting session - and they're RAW too!
These cameras in whosoevers' phones are no more than a useful fringe benefit, next the whiners you expect Wharfdale speaker like output too.
It's a phone with some apps, deal with it.
Off to do dome nudies with Paris - using a big Nikon - that's a camera not a phone - don't want fuzzies
If you knew about cameras you would know that 4mp is plenty for a phone...
As a photographer, I get very bored of the general perception that a camera is good if it has high megapixels. As above posters have commented camera quality if not just about how many MPs you have, in fact its one of the last factors in the quality of your photo.
The quality of the lens is the primary consideration, then the sensor. You can have a 20mp sensor but if your lens is made of low quality glass your photos will suck. Yeah you can print them to a massive size but they will still suck big time.
A camera phone sensor will also be very tiny and cramming ten mp into that tiny phone sized sensor will just increase noise, sharpness and actually decrease the picture quality.
A 4 or 5 mp camera will happily print your image at about A4 size without any loss in quality. Why would you want a 10mp camera phone? You want to print at A3 or 20"x16" from a phone picture? I very much doubt it, the lens and sensor would never be upto the job. in the world of cameras some manufacturers have actually used less MP on new cameras after realising its not always better.
Very bored of all the people using the megapixels as an argument to put item down. It is frankly not really valid a valid argument. Its a marketing ploy by the camera manufacturers and you my friends have fallen for it.
..I mean, you guys are just not getting it.
Apple sells relatively expensive hardware. Yes
Apple often trails others in specifications. Yes
Apples products still work more smoothly than the competitors. Yes
The iphone is no exception. I've used one, and it's.. a phone. It's also a surprisingly easy to use PDA type device with all functionality well thought out. It really perfects what Palm was doing before Palm dropped the ball. Simple, usable, powerful (in use). A windows mobile device is none of those. An android device is a few of those, but doesn't come close, yet.
I recently got to play with two models of HTC phones, one a HTC Hero, the other a HTC Magic (android OS).
Both were more powerful than the iPhone. Both had much better specs and a better camera. Both owners wanted my iPhone. The owner of the Magic had switched from a iPhone 1. He expressed his disappointment and wished he had bought an iPhone 3GS instead of the HTC unit.
That was due to little things. Clunky interface, weird and inconsistent behaviour, annoying music player behaviour and a selection of other things.
Personally I found the Magic to be nice, but unpolished. The Hero just sucked balls.
And the stupid "idiotPhone" type comments above just show a lack of understanding. Thanks to attitudes like that we still have atrocious interfaces like in The GIMP. Yes, it is powerful. Yes it is almost enough to replace photoshop. Yes it completely sucks because the developers don't think that serious work in interface and usability design matter. Unusable, but powerful, mess. Another example of "the interface is good enough for our engineers so it must be good enough for our customers" is Windows Control Panel. Doesn't matter which version, and Win7 is also included.
The reason people pay more for an Apple product is that the engineers at apple, the designers, and Jobs, are all insane on the details. These details mean that the everyday experience of using apple products is just that little less frustrating.
I used to be a PC technician and bought myself a mac to try out. I now get shudders of annoyance when I need to fix my old XP machine. XP will be replaced by some Linux distro soon. Even Ubuntu is usually more usable than XP (except when you have to compile drivers from source)
Now for a beer
Megapixels = marketing
Unless there is a decent bit of glass in front of the sensor the number of pixels is just another marketing feature for the mine is bigger than yours brigade.
From another marketing point of view I can't see why Apple feel the need to go the magapixel route, the people who buy an iPhone will do so even if the camera function was a box brownie fixed on with a bit of velcro.