Today Apple unveiled the brand new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus mobile phones and it looks like a lot of attention has been given to the camera features of the two devices. With the “Shot on iPhone” campaign showing huge billboards featuring iPhone images, it is no wonder that Apple has been spending quite a bit of R&D towards the image capture capabilities of the new iPhone. The keynote presentation was filled with camera verbiage – in fact, the Apple team specifically used such words as “bokeh” to describe the new dual lens design of the iPhone 7 Plus. Speaking of which, it will only be the Plus model that will have two lenses – one wide-angle f/1.8 lens for wide shots and a 56mm equivalent telephoto lens for zooming in and capturing portraits (the regular iPhone 7 will have a single wide angle lens).
While the telephoto lens won’t bring the amazing subject isolation capabilities of a large camera system, it will be good enough to be able to isolate subjects from the background and apply additional algorithms to blur the background further via software – a pretty clever way to simulate a portrait lens. In addition to the dual lens design, there are a few more camera upgrades.
First, the sensor has been updated to a new 12 MP sensor which is supposedly 60% faster and 30% more energy efficient. Second, the flash unit right next to the camera has been also upgraded to be 50% brighter, thanks to the new Quad LED light, which is capable of compensating for the flickering when shot in artificial light indoors or outdoors. Third, there is now a more intelligent image processor, which allows for not only more overall throughput, but a much more enhanced way to capture images. Some powerful scanning of the scene takes place before capture, which not only does a better job at detecting objects and people, but also performs additional noise reduction, improved white balance and even compositing of multiple images.
And lastly, the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will both be able to capture images in RAW using Adobe’s DNG format, which should allow one to perform additional tweaks in post-processing software like Lightroom.
I am looking forward to upgrading my iPhone 6 Plus to the new iPhone 7 Plus, primarily because of the above. The new camera features make it an appealing choice for taking pictures on the go, whenever I do not have a large camera with me, or I want to shoot something that the phone camera is good enough for…
What do you think about the new iPhone 7 Plus camera features? Are you planning to upgrade your phone later this year, or will there will be feature annoyances such as the removal of the headphone jack that will prevent you from doing so? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below!