Josh has been talking on the blog in a couple of posts of late about photography on smartphones and it happened to be aptly timed. Just last weekend I put a post on my own personal Google+ profile page about how I am not ready to drop my digital SLR yet and rely solely on my smartphone.
Since 1st January 2013, I have been taking a photo each day and publishing it to my personal blog. I intend to do this until the end of the year, as a personal challenge/diary for the year. I am not aiming to be creative or have any professional tact about it, its just something I wanted to do. Some people think it is silly, but it is my personal challenge and has got me using my camera more than before. If you are interested you can see them here.
However for this project I have been using my smartphone. It works well because my phone is always with me and can allow me to capture those moments that sum up my day. They do say the best camera is the one that you have with you, which is very true.
Yet I feel compelled on occasions, despite the size, weight and annoyance to carry my digital SLR. It is a fairly basic one costing around £400 and I have a couple of lenses but the Samsung Galaxy S4 that I use does not compete with the clarity and richness of colour.
With lots of tweaking of the settings maybe I can capture a very good image, but with my digital SLR I can without too much hassle point and shoot and capture results like the following:
I am not saying a smartphone camera can not do this, but few will get these results with so little effort. The Nokia devices probably stand the best chance currently but things are always changing.
I do find carrying an SLR a hassle. Its bulky and heavy and well just awkward, but the results justify the hassle.
It is also not as integrated meaning removing memory cards or connecting USB cables to upload and share photos. It takes time and is also more expensive to run a smartphone and an SLR. But. it will only be a matter of time; 2 years I reckon before I can ditch my SLR and rely on the smartphone camera.
How it will happen I am not sure. I would envisage accessories will make a smartphone camera better (as shown with the Nokia 1020) as it will be very difficult to get it all into one device otherwise. Even a good SLR is made great by lenses. I am sure manufacturers are planning this already
I really look forward to that day, it will make for a simpler photography option.