Chances are you own a smartphone. It can do some incredible things. We can connect with people all around the world in an instant just with a few taps of our fingers. It’s amazing, but it’s only just starting. Even with the technology in most smartphones being top of the line, there is still room for growth. The biggest improvement over the last few years has been in cameras.
Most smartphones have 5- to 8-megapizel cameras in them which is double what it was just a few years ago. A few months ago at CES, the Consumer Electronics Show, a 16-megapixel digital camera was announced which also runs on the Android OS. Think of an iPod Touch with a zooming lens running Android. I’m not sure yet if I would suggest buying it as an alternative to your camera or phone, but it’s a step in the right direction.
Nokia also announced a phone with a bulging 41-megapixel camera. I would assume the phone is pretty top heavy. It makes the phone look odd. But I’m sure there are aspiring “phonetographers” who will buy it (I’m coining that word, by the way). With a wide variety of phone apps out there that let you edit and modify photos, there will be a demand for higher quality cameras in smartphones.
It’s only natural that different tools are unified as technology advances. In the next few years, you won’t be able to differentiate between the tablet and laptop. And even with the great improvements in high-end cameras by Nikon and Canon over the past few years or even months, there is still a demand for more mobility. I’ve talked to people who have expressed interest in a Dropbox-like system that allows a user to take a picture, upload it automatically, and then be able to access it later. This would be a big step forward for photojournalists. Instead of having to use a ton of memory cards and upload them later, it would be instant. Just like everything else.
Things are starting to become instant. Anything that can connect to the internet has the ability to do things instantly. It’s going to expand into other tools like household appliances and cars, but this should have happened years ago for photography. I imagine in a good five years cameras in your phones will be as quality as the most expensive digital Canon on the market. Along with it you’ll be able to take, upload, and share photos instantly with anyone over almost any service. We’ll get there but for right now we must deal with lugging around phones, cameras, and a crap load of SD cards.