How Companies are Fooling People in the Name of High Megapixel Camera Phones


How Companies are Fooling People in the Name of High Megapixel Camera Phones

If you have ever paid close attention to the grandiose events put on by smartphone brands while launching a new device, you would be led to believe th

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If you have ever paid close attention to the grandiose events put on by smartphone brands while launching a new device, you would be led to believe that they were offering a product that would revolutionize the industry. Smartphone brands often boast about their new model’s impeccable design, its cutting-edge technology that would offer better user experience than all the other devices in the market, and more often than not, their cameras that, if you believe the brands, were simply a cut above the rest.

For any smartphone brand unveiling a new phone, their marketing strategy would often be to drum up the phone’s features, while leaving out the not-s0-great specs, and letting them remain ambiguous. As customers, we always try to find a product that offers the best value for money and are often swayed by the myriad of features and specifications offered by a smartphone brand. And one of the most common fibs we are told by smartphone brands is that more megapixel count in smartphone cameras translate to better image quality.

Dual, Triple, Quad and Penta-Camera Phones

Long gone are the days when consumers could make up their minds with ease while looking at a smartphone’s specs, especially when it comes to the phone’s cameras. From a single rear camera, to dual, triple, quad, and now, penta-rear camera setup, brands are packing more sensors and lenses at the back, while still focusing on their primary selling point — the phone’s megapixel count. In fact, most of the budget and mid-range phones now come with 48MP and 64MP primary cameras, but not all of them capture high-quality photos. 

The image quality doesn’t solely depend on the megapixel count, which is why Apple continues to offer iPhone models with 12MP primary cameras, which can click stunning photos with equally impressive effects.

This is due to the fact that the megapixel count alone does not paint a complete picture. Several other factors, such as the camera lens, image sensor and the sensor size, aperture, AI, and software algorithms play a pivotal role in determining the image quality. Thus, one has to look beyond the multi-camera setup and the megapixel count while opting for a smartphone.

That said, one doesn’t have to buy an iPhone to get their hands on a mobile device that can click high-quality images. Even if your budget only allows you to purchase a smartphone that is priced under Rs. 15,000, you can choose a smartphone model that packs impressive cameras. Phones with best camera under 15000 include the Xiaomi Poco M2 Pro, which comes with a quad-rear camera setup and a 48MP shooter, Vivo U20, Realme 6i and Samsung Galaxy M21.

Different Model Name, Same Hardware

The other commonly used tactic by smartphone brands is changing the model name, but equipping it with the same old hardware and configuration. While consumers often believe that a brand’s new upcoming mobile phone is an upgrade of its predecessors, and comes with better features, software and hardware configuration, that is not always the case. The same applies to a smartphone’s camera.

Brands might tweak a feature or two, but more often than not, the newer models largely offer the same hardware and configuration, and are indistinguishable in terms of the design and features. It is thus important for consumers to do their due diligence before purchasing a new smartphone.

Brands often try to confuse consumers by talking about megapixel count, or the number of cameras the smartphone packs, which can be misleading. A classic example of “less is more” is the Google Pixel 3 smartphone series, which has received plaudits from consumers and critics alike. Google Pixel 3 comes with only one 12MP rear camera, but provides a DSLR-esque experience. 

From various modes, such as the unique Night Mode which is particularly awe-inspiring in low-lighting conditions and Panorama, to Google Lens’ handy features, such as product search, barcode scan and Google Translate, the smartphone offers a truly unique experience.

Thus, while purchasing a smartphone, it is imperative that you do not fall for the high megapixel gimmick, and opt for a model that comes with the best hardware (aperture, sensors) and software (photo-processing algorithm).