Will mobile phones with cameras kill off the digital camera?

@shelagh77 (3643)
October 25, 2008 3:50pm CST
I have just been responding to a discussion regarding cameras since I am looking to buy a new one, and my friend has just chirruped up that I would do better to upgrade my mobile phone to one which takes photos, since these are now so good you don't really need a camera unless you are a professional photographer. She also says to pester my service provider since many provide a free phone. So of course I am going to try that. But I am wondering, those of you who have both phones and cameras, do the photos taken from phones make a good comparison to those taken by cameras? Do I need to buy both, or would a phone with a good camera in it be sufficient?
3 people like this
28 responses
@skysuccess (8882)
• Singapore
26 Oct 08
shelagh77, For mobile phones to overtake digital cameras is not impossible, however I do not see it happening soon. The fact that the technologies of a digital camera is so advance, it will be sometime before the mobile phones can be on par. Even then, the mobile phone will probably be of another dimension as I am sure that the size could not be as slim and/or convenient as it is. I felt that you should have the best of both worlds if your budget permits. Picture taking using a handphone usually is an impromptu issue where you just need to take some quality snap shots. Photo taking functions on a cell phone is limited as it is simply there as an additional useful accessory. As an avid photography hobbyist, I must admit that I have yet to find a cellphone that can be on par with a digital camera at the moment. So, I would advise that you should try and get both if you can afford. Take care.
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I am not a good photographer, I have to admit. I would like to learn more about it but unfortunately I am already studying for one course, in psychology, which will take the next two years so I can not see myself studying any time soon. I built the web sites and needed pics so I manage with the cell phone and I have to admit I must have been very lucky, since it was bought second hand and everyone agrees a proper camera is so much better. Someone must have been watching over me when I bought the phone!
2 people like this
• Singapore
26 Apr 09
shelagh77, Photography is really more of an art, like drawing a picture where one will have to pick a subject, compose it and add the various other aspects to make it a great picture. You just do not need to specially attend a course for it in the first place, just go about your day(s) and snap whatever you like and feel is worth it. The course are for refining aspects and advance techniques where you will be called to fully use all the applications and functions of your camera. It is also an opportunity to build a network of keen and enthusiastic photographers to share and go around enjoying the hobby even more. So, if I were you right now, I will just use every available free time and opportunity to snap as much pictures as possible. In this way, you will be able to put in the needed practices and enhance your skills here. Hope you will be enjoying this hobby.
• Singapore
26 Apr 09
P.S. FYI resolution is not everything for a good digital camera and although we may have 8.0megapixel camera phones available in the market, I am sure that you can find that particular equipment to be relatively expensive. Also, the size of the phone increases too in relation to what it has to house for these enhanced and advance functionality. Next there are simply way too much applications to the functionality of the equipment now, that I am sure you will find the performance reviews not that favorable and well. One of the most evident complaints were that it hangs and/or slow response when switching about applications. Also, as I had mentioned above resolutions isn't everything and good cameras are known for its high performance lenses. So, unless they can fit a relative good lens I just do not see the phones coming close to these relatively above average digital cameras. Also, that the end users would not mind having a bulky communication equipment. Cheers.
@Lakota12 (42684)
• United States
26 Oct 08
the phone takes good pics but then ya have to send it to you email on puter so you can download or up load which ever then do what ya want with it But I like the camera for I can take losts of pics and upload them to puter and print out the ones I want. DOnt really need both for my way ofthinking hugs good luck!
3 people like this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Surprise! I actually got into Mylot after all this time! I think I would like to have both but as you know my finances won't stretch to it. As a frequent visitor to my site you also see the photos I do manage to get onto that site. They are OK but not excellent, but I have to live with it, yes?
2 people like this
@Lakota12 (42684)
• United States
25 Apr 09
nope I think that digital phones will still be around they take better pics!
2 people like this
@its07005 (50)
• Malaysia
26 Oct 08
Well. In my opinion, I would still buy a digital camera. Nowadays, the highest megapixel that the cell phone companies have been able to fit in their phone is 5MP. I recommend that you go for digital cameras until the highest megapixel in the phone exceeds 7MP. 7MP is the average MP that a camera has nowadays.
3 people like this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I have to admit to having no knowledge of cameras whatsoever. I was driven to get the mobile phone camera because I desperately needed to get some photos onto a web site and I had no funds for a camera. I would like to know more, but probably could not study this for a good couple of years since in addition to running a dozen sites I am studying psychology, which proves I am a very sad person lol. I have to admit all the replies have got me yearning to try a camera though.
2 people like this
26 Oct 08
I don't believe mobile phones with cameras will kill off the digital camera. The camera's on mobiles are just not sophisticated enough to be effective competition. If you just want simple photographs, such as on nights out with friendsthen a mobile is adequate. If you want to be able to do more then a digital camera is better.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
In the advent of the new apple phone do you still feel that a phone will never approach the finesse of a camera? I can't afford one of those phones either, but they do seem rather good.
2 people like this
• Australia
26 Oct 08
I can't look into the future, but I can see what is going on today: and today, there are more digital cameras with more features than ever. Phone cameras are getting better, but they are not directly competing with "real" cameras. Apart from the difference in quality that others have mentioned, phone cameras are actually making a stronger market for cameras: people get a taste for photography, develop a love for it, maybe some skill; but the phone camera lets them down...it can't realise the pictures they see around them, and want to take: so they get a proper camera and the market goes on growing.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Well, the choice was forced upon me by affordability but I do see the popularity of the cell phone/camera taking off around me, even as I walk around on my daily business. For me, although the quality is obviously not as excellent as that achieved by a camera, the ability to take just one item out with me is a big plus, and also I can look after one object much more easily. My original camera was trashed when I lent it to my ex and his kittens played ping pong with it!
2 people like this
• United States
26 Oct 08
Yes, i guess the mobile phones are killing digital cameras, because most of the phones come with digital cameras now, and i personally plan to buy a camera first, but then i see myself doing everything with my cell phone and change my mood about buying digital camera. Now I really dont think I need one. I saved some money too because these digital cameras are pretty expensive.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Yup that was why I was driven to get the phone. I think I would like to try a camera if I ever got the funds but I have been lucky in that so far the cell has not let me down.
2 people like this
• India
26 Oct 08
Actually i don't think so, one gadget can not overtake another one in any case. Even thought many cell phones are with advanced cameras with mega pixel, but the photos taken with the cameras are never equal to digital cameras, We can use digital cameras for taking some wonderful photographs which is not possible when using the cell phone cameras. Whatever may be the situation i don't think that it will overtake the digital cameras.
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
That seems to be the overall concensus of opinion. I suppose it is too much to hope that a cell phone producer will make a product which will make carrying several items around unecessary? I have not the financial means to buy a camera in addition to the phone so I am making do with what I have but I have to admit that the overall opinion is that I would do better with a camera!
• Philippines
25 Oct 08
Photos taken from a phone camera like cellphones is very useful when you are used to upload photos on the internet..the advantage here is that you can upload it immediately because the size is intended for internet photo. But if you want to blow-up your photos then you really guys need a separate digital camera which is in high quality and resolutions.
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Yup everyone seems to think the camera wins, lol. Guess I shall have to save up and buy myself a camera as well as a phone.
@trickiwoo (2703)
• United States
25 Oct 08
There is absolutely no comparison at all! I have a 1 megapixel digital camera that takes better quality photos than I've seen taken with 5 megapixel cell phone cameras. Because cell phones are so small and do so much more than just take photos, you can't fit a quality image sensor inside them. Larger image sensors make better quality images... no matter how many megapixels your camera has! The quality of cell phone cameras is improving, but it still will never be anywhere what you can get with a digital camera. I love my cell phone camera! It's very convenient and a lot of fun! I mostly take photos and then text them to my friends and family. But the photo quality isn't anywhere near good enough to print or share online. As for if you need both, it depends on what you take pictures for. If you just want snapshots of your friends, your pets, etc. to have for memories, then you might be fine with just a cell phone camera. You can store the images on your phone to look at, and text them to your friends! If you want to print photos, do a lot of photo sharing online, or take high quality artistic photos then you will need a digital camera.
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I have to admit that I have an eye defect so it is difficult for me to see the improved quality of a camera photo. I was in the situation where my ex had my camera, his kittens played ping pong with the camera and I was building a web site where I simply had to have photos so I am managing with the cell phone and it occurred to me that whilst the photos are not as good as those achievable with a camera they are quite good, and I wondered whether in this financial climate the cell phone would ever take over from the camera. Apparently the new and very expensive phones give a photo which is of equal quality to that achievable by a camera?
@rainmark (4306)
25 Oct 08
Actually i got a phone with cam and digital camera. What i like in my digital cam is it can take better photos than my phone. The kind of photos maybe differ from the kind of phone you have and digital cam you have. If you've got a nice phone with very resolution and can take more photos and videos you don't need digital camera. Happy posting.
3 people like this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I have to admit that I would love a cam. Maybe if the money fairy visits I may have one one day. I had to have the cell phone option as the only financial option open to me. I had to get photos onto a web site and it was literally the only way and it was about a third of the cost of the camera. You have put the yearning for a cam firmly into my brain now lol.
@taripres (1499)
• United States
26 Oct 08
Well, it all depends on the phone, as well as, the camera! For just taking pics of yourself, some casual stuff, a phone is fine! If you're trying to go out and be a photographer, a hobbyist, or something more than casual pics, I'd check out a good camera! So, figure out what you're trying to do then go from there! Taripre$
• Philippines
8 Nov 08
You hit the nail right on the head! I agree with you 100%. Your buying decision should be dictated by how are you going to use your digicam, aside from the budget of course. I have here a great lens that talks just about that http://www.squidoo.com/howtobuyadigitalcamera
@taripres (1499)
• United States
8 Nov 08
Thanx, I appreciate the comment! I'm thinking about trying to get into a lil photography and filming, so I just can't use a phone, I have to go all out n make sure everything is quality! No one wants to see stuff of pure quality, they'll go right pass it! Taripre$
1 person likes this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
That is an interesting discussion. I suppose I have been very lucky in that the phone I bought manages to cope with the photos I need currently!
• United States
26 Oct 08
Piece of sky - Taken with camera phone
I don't think there is any danger of cell phone cameras killing off regular digital cameras. I am on my third camera phone. BTW I only paid $50 for my current phone, a Motorola Razr, But the other two I got for free. Just wait a couple of months after they come out. They have gotten a little better over the years, But Digicams have gotten a LOT better. And cheaper. I recently bought a Canon 8mp digicam for about what most people pay for their phone. It's no professional camera for sure but It is 100 times better than my camera phone. It is easier to use, allows more control, It's more than just Point and Shoot, It allows control over focus, exposure, zoom, I can take multiple shots,etc. The photo files are Much larger, And Much clearer. Even if a CP says it is 5mp, And a digican says it's 5mp, the digicam will have a much larger CCD Chip, Or picture area. And a much higher quality chip also. CPs are great for quick shots of your friend or to capture an idea, but when compared to even a lower end digi, the difference is night and day. This shot was taken with my phone.
2 people like this
• United States
26 Oct 08
Bird of Paridise flower - Taken with Canon digicam
And this was taken with my digital camera. The first shot is 40kb It won't even make a decent 4x6 print. The second one is 2.78MB. I could easily blow this up to an 8x10. Sorry, 10x8 in Britain.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I don't understand the technology of photos, I just swear until I get the right effect on a photo I need for a web site :-) Most people in this discussion agree that the phone will never take over from the camera. You were very lucky with your phone! I paid about $80 for mine and I thought I had a bargain!
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@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
26 Oct 08
Never! Digital cameras are terrific, and you don't have to pay a monthly fee in order to use them. There are also more features that phone cameras don't have. The free camera phones are not the ones with the best pictures. It's the most expensive ones. Also, most digital cameras take short movie clips and have sound. I'm not sure if cell cameras have evolved that far yet. There is a good reason for a cell camera though, for times when you would like a picture and you don't happen to have a camera with you. For that time when you happen to see a movie star or entertainer...or if you've been in an accident at need pictures. For my money, I would recommend a decent digital phone for pictures you want to keep...and a cell camera when you need a picture quick.
2 people like this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
lol you are a member of the digital camera fan club then. I did not have any choice since my own camera, which I never even had the opportunity to try, was trashed by a pair of kittens! I did not have the funds for a new camera so I had to settle for a cell phone and I have been so lucky it is untrue. So far it has done everything I have needed, so the kittens live!
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@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
25 Apr 09
That's what you call having nine lives...although it sounds like they are down to eight lives now. I've had digital cameras that I never figured out how to use. Finally my son got me one for my birthday a few years ago that's so easy, it almost runs itself. If not for that, I'd probably be limited to doodling..lol
1 person likes this
• Philippines
8 Nov 08
I'd go for a camera anytime. A digital camera's pic is far more superior than a phone or an upgraded phone for that matter. Cameras will still be around coz when phones upgrade, so does the camera. Agree?
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
That does seem to be the majority verdict on this one, I have to admit. I do wonder thought whether in the future the phone will reach a stage of excellence whereby the convenience of having just one device ie the phone, as opposed to camera and phone, to keep an eye on when outside, will just take the advantage?
1 person likes this
• Philippines
3 Nov 08
my mobile phones have cameras. my sony 810i has a cybershot 3.2mp. it can take great pictures but i still think a separate digital camera is better in most cases.. we have an old canon compact 3.2mp camera and now i'm looking for an upgrade. probably i'll get at least a 8mp to 10mp compact unit.. but my dream is to own a d-slr camera as i always wanted to do photography as a hobby..
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
I have not been able to get in here for ages. Have you got any further with your photographic hobby dream yet?
1 person likes this
• Philippines
27 Oct 08
I don't think so. If you're strapped for cash, maybe a good phone with a good camera would be a good idea but no camera phone can replace a digital camera yet. Maybe in the future when they integrate a cellphone onto a camera you'll have a better camera phone but now, I don't think phones with cameras can kill of digital cams.
2 people like this
@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Yup, I was strapped for cash lol. I had a proper camera and it got trashed and I needed to get pics onto a web site very quickly so I bought a second hand phone and judging by the replies here I have been terrifically lucky in that the phone was very cheap but it has performed really, really well.
1 person likes this
@duke_31 (18)
• Philippines
27 Oct 08
It really depends on which angle we're looking at. If we just want some tolerable and basic details of photographs, then we can settle for these mobile phones. They say that SLRs really has big sensors which capture a lot of details that makes a photograph. In my opinion, cameras are still cameras. Mobile phones will still remain as mobile phones. As that saying goes, you cannot concentrate on two things. Thus, one item cannot be an expert of all. Maybe, a jack of all trades/traits(?).
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Well I don't know about mobile phones but I do have to be a Jill of all trades in that I have no idea whatsoever about photography and also have an eye defect, but I find that the people for whom I design web sites are, shall we say, a little slow in providing the photograph work I need to finish the job so I tend to put my own offerings in place and then put their stuff in when they finally send it in to me lol.
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@maximax8 (27045)
26 Oct 08
I have a mobile phone that I can take photos on and then send to a friend. I never download my photos or print my photos that have been taken with my mobile phone. I have a digital camera and I take my the vast majority of my photos with that. I get my photos from my digital camera printed and put onto a disk. I believe the a digital camera will produce higher quality photos compared to a mobile phone. I wouldn't choose to just take photos with a mobile phone because the quality, especially when enlarged would be poor. I don't believe that mobiles with cameras will ever kill off digital camera.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Although this is the prevalent opinion I do think that one day the phone and camera option will be the only one, if only because humans mislay objects and most people will opt to have one item rather than multiple ones. I think the quality of the cell photos will have to improve vastly first though.
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@mac1946 (1602)
• Calgary, Alberta
26 Oct 08
While phone cameras will not take over from digital cameras,I have found that the camera phone will cost far more to use. I have both,but had the phone type first,so when trying to download to internet I had to spen $65.00 for the cable to connect both,then found out on my next phone bill,they were charging me .50 cents per picture for downloading fees. I do still use the phone camera if it is all I have with me,but will be very carefull figuring out which to download. Many Blessings.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
Wow! I am so lucky. I do not pay any fees for downloading, which is very lucky since I run a web site for someone else and all the photos to go onto the site are for them and not myself! I also managed to get some photographs taken of myself, and I have not had a photograph taken for about 20 years, which was a bit of a shock to some of the elderly aunts when they saw what I look like lol.
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@pravakar (54)
• Bangladesh
26 Oct 08
I don't think mobile cameras will takeover digital cameras so easily. Because mobile cameras just don't stand at the same level with digital cameras.
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@shelagh77 (3643)
25 Apr 09
They may not compare at the moment but the technology is improving every day and I think maybe some day soon the phone will have all the qualities required and will have the advantage that only one device is required, not two. Do you see that day coming?
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