Over the years the one feature that I've determined to be the most important for me is the camera. When it comes to software and apps, I just expect those to work a certain way. Which, more often than not, that's exactly what happens. But while camera technology in smartphones has improved a great deal over the years, the performance and results can still be a bit hit-or-miss. We're almost at the point where every smartphone camera will be great.
Right now there are still some important differences between cameras out there. We have resources like DxOMark to help us out when the comparisons look too close to call at face value, but ultimately it can really come down to personal preference when it comes to the high-end smartphones out there. Samsung and Apple, for instance, are doing some amazing work with cameras in their devices, but there is still a difference in the photos when it's all said and done. If you approve of Apple's approach, you'll likely pick up an iPhone. But if you prefer Samsung's, well, a new Galaxy S smartphone is probably in your future.
And obviously these aren't the only two companies putting a lot of attention on the camera. Sony has for years, and LG has tried to make its own flagship smartphones standout with its camera implementations. The manufacturers want a camera that stands out, beats out the competition. Luckily for them, a lot of consumers are looking for the same thing.
One of the major contentious areas is low-light photography. This is one of the major bullet points we hear get talked about from the likes of Samsung and Apple, too. This particular category of camera reviews is one of my favorites, at least recently, because I love low-light photography and I like seeing what these cameras can pump out.
But for me, personally, low-light photography doesn't actually matter much when I'm picking out a new smartphone. I honestly can't remember the last time I took a photo where there wasn't an overabundance of light, either naturally or artificially. I just don't take a lot of photos in low-light situations, apparently.
And yet, it's one of the sections in a review I seek out because I want to see the photos. Some of the results that the Google Pixel 2 XL was able to produce back at launch were pretty spectacular.
We're going to be hearing about low-light photography later this year, too. Samsung will more than likely bring it up with the launch of the Galaxy Note 9. Apple will probably talk about it with the launch of new iPhones. And it seems like a safe bet that Google will definitely take some time to hype up the camera's performance in low-light situations. Especially if they really are sticking with a single camera design on the back.
That being said, I'm curious how important this particular feature is to you. How often do you take photos in low-light situations, and when you're looking for a new smartphone is low-light camera performance a major consideration for you? Let me know!