Why You All Need To Calm Down About Phones Killing Cameras

Apple iPhone 4 ISO 80 F2.4

There is way too much going on in the current blogosphere about mobile phones killing point and shoot cameras. This comes from the announcement that the Apple iPhone 4 is now the most used camera on Flickr. 1001NoisyCameras ranted about this and tried to correct some of the news that is already out there based off of the report from Techcrunch. As a marketing guy at a camera retailer, here are a couple of reasons why I honest to god believe that the point and shoot market has nothing to worry about.

Eye-Fi Direct

Regular readers of this site know that I am absolutely smitten with the Eye-Fi card and we gave it a glowing review after tests with multiple cameras. With the announcement of Eye-Fi Direct, one can easily send their images taken with their much better camera (vs their cameraphone) and upload them to their phone for texting, sharing via social media sites, etc. Plus these cards are very affordable for everything that they can do.


I’m a fan of the New York Yankees, and every now and then I go to their games here in NYC. I can’t imagine seeing someone trying to take a close up image of someone at home plate using their iPhone or other smart device.

Granted, Panasonic and other companies have intelligent resolution and intelligent zoom: which is supposed to improve the quality of digital zoom. However, it won’t ever be able to touch an optical zoom of the same equivalent focal length.

Image 35x digital zoom vs 35x optical zoom in a superzoom camera. Which one would you take if you wanted better images? In a point and shoot body, you’re able to achieve some really amazing zoom ranges.

Beyond this, think about travel cams: your phone won’t be able to capture anything as accurately as your camera can. And your camera will give you more control.

You’re not going to take a phone underwater

Do you really see yourself buying an underwater case for your phone? Of course not. Instead, you’re going to opt for an underwater/tough camera.

Phones can’t accommodate larger sensors (and are therefore limited)

Remember the Sigma DP2s that we reviewed? Or the NEX 5? And heck, the Olympus E-PL2! Well those are relatively compact bodies with pretty large sensors. If anything, your phone will not be able to accommodate an APS-C sized sensor or even a Micro Four Thirds sized one for that matter without becoming a brick.

On the other hand there are digital filters that will be able to give you that blurry background (bokeh) if you want. However, that’s not the only reason why you’d want a camera with a larger sensor.

Larger sensors have a much larger dynamic range, better color depth, and better ISO capabilities. Therefore, you can take better images with a larger sensor camera. Despite the fact that phones will be able to shoot RAW, you won’t want to bring those to a wedding still.

To say that people will toss away their point and shoots for the convenience offered in a mobile phone is insane when everyone and their mother is bringing around a DSLR in NYC and only 10% of them know how to use it.

Your phone is nowhere as sexy as your camera

There are people that just appreciate good craftsmanship in their cameras, and then there are tools that carry cameras just to look like artists. Said tools will also continue to purchase cameras just to look cool.

And people will still believe that they are artists.

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Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.