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Apple refuses to participate in the megapixel war, iPhone 5S sticks with an 8 MP camera

Apple refuses to participate in the megapixel war, iPhone 5S sticks with an 8 MP camera
Many of us expected Apple to introduce the new iPhone 5S with a camera that packs more megapixels than the previous one. The iPhone 5 came with an 8 MP snapper, so it was only fitting for the 5S to upgrade that to a 13 MP one. However, in a move that is just slightly surprising, Apple has once again equipped its flagship smartphone with an 8 MP shooter. Are we disappointed? Absolutely no.

It seems like after the iPhone 5, there were two routes in front of Apple when it came to the iPhone camera. It could either increase the number of the megapixels to 13 and preserve the sensor pixel size as it is, or preserve the number of megapixels and increase the pixels size to 1.5 microns. Obviously, Cupertino has chosen the latter, arguing that an 8 MP camera with bigger pixels will produce noticeably better photos than a 13 MP camera with smaller pixels. Whether this is going to be so remains to be seen, but we can't you tell just how impatient we are to pit the iPhone 5S's camera against its biggest rival, the Galaxy S4 (which packs a 13 MP shooter), once Apple's latest hits the market.

Apple refuses to participate in the megapixel war, iPhone 5S sticks with an 8 MP camera
So, in addition to making the camera sensor and pixels bigger, Apple has also increased the aperture to f/2.2. The end result of all this is that the iPhone 5S's new 8 MP camera should be able to capture 33% more light compared of the iPhone 5's 8 MP camera — which isn't a small upgrade. With a higher sensitivity to light, the camera of the iPhone 5S should not only capture brighter images, but also lower the amount of noise as well.

Obviously, we can't be sure yet if all this is going to lead to better images than what a great 13 MP snapper, such as those on the GS4 and G2, could produce, but we're absolutely certain that the iPhone 5S will sport a fantastic camera. Actually, Apple has also added some other useful features to enhance your photos even further. For example, there's the so-called True Tone Flash. As you've already seen, the iPhone 5S sports a dual LED flash, but it's not just a dual LED flash, because the new light will have an amber color. Using some custom software algorithms, the iPhone 5S will determine just how much of an amber light you need in order to "fix" the color temperature of the shot. You know how often pics turn out somewhat bluish or yellowish/reddish with your smartphone camera, right? Apple claims that it now has a solution for this, as the amber LED should compensate for the imperfect white balance of a shot, rendering skin tones truer (hence the name) and highlights more accurate.

In a way, we're glad to see Apple move away from the megapixel war. Having in mind that most people use their handsets for quick snaps and picture sharing on social networks, uploading gargantuan 13 MP images was starting to get a bit frustrating, especially when using a mobile network. With 8 megapixels being a sufficiently high resolution, we really hope that the bigger camera sensor and aperture of the Apple iPhone 5S will lead to substantially better photographs.

Check out these supposedly not retouched photos that Apple has taken using the iPhone 5S:

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posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:50 8

2. crazymonkey05 (Posts: 183; Member since: 20 Nov 2012)

the 5S has photos that are not really brag worthy i think the sony xperia z ultra can do better. possibly the GS4

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:52 2

4. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10457; Member since: 14 May 2012)

Z Ultra? I understand the Z1, but the ZU? Come on...

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:00 2

12. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

wasn't the iPhone 5 already on par with the GS4?

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:16 7

22. _Bone_ (Posts: 2155; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)

Was on par with the Snapdragon version cause that also sported the Sony Exmor R sensor (a fresher 13MP variant). The Octa-core version however is far superior cause that has the Exmor RS which has the advantage in clarity, noise handling, white balance and dynamic range.

Interestingly, the LG G2, a superb camera using a new Exmor RS revision (same as the Note III and Z1) isn't quite as good as the old one. The RS on the Exynos S4 is the only one that can go H2H with the PureView 808, not even the Lumia 1020 can touch it, certainly not the iPhone 5S - and most certainly not us haha, that variant is hard to come by.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:20 1

25. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

All the GS4 vs iPhone 5 camera have been pretty close, I\'ve seen reviews where the GS4 has won, but have yet to see any say the GS4 was far superior but maybe they were all using the Snapdragon version. Doesn\'t sound likely though.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:07 5

19. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5498; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)

Look at the photo Nr: 3 and Nr: 9, since when iPhone makes photos under the water?

If someone will say that photo was taken through reservoir glass, I would say that reservoir glass was extremely clear and surprisingly not distorted the view. (sarcasm) I won\'t trust it, smells like a fake.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:51 8

3. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10457; Member since: 14 May 2012)

Ray and Victor wrote the same exact article... Awkward.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:56

9. Commentator (Posts: 3722; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)

Well, I guess whoever gets the most hits gets to keep their job.

Edit: I love how they both used practically the same thumbnail image too, with only the colors being different.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:53 19

6. Sniggly (Posts: 7305; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)

"We are not disappointed."

Of course you're not disappointed, Ray. You never will be, no matter what Apple does.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:53

7. tech2 (Posts: 3487; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)

Not really an Apple fan but I'll admit the finger print scanner is really a nice improvement specially for someone like me who password protects almost everything in a phone. Its a very good time saver if integrated well like app store and account logins, etc.

However, dual led flash doesn't excite me at all. Will wait for few comparison reviews though !

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:55 2

8. oister85 (Posts: 501; Member since: 27 Apr 2012)

Wow good picture quality. But I'm waiting for the awesome z1.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:58

10. HASHTAG (unregistered)

Not saying that I favor Apple, but we should all know that it's NOT all about the number of pixels. I think Apple will be fine sticking to 8 Megapixles. Their photos seems to produce great quality most of the times.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:54 4

27. Bedz81 (Posts: 84; Member since: 30 Dec 2012)

Yet people slammed Motorola for their 10mpx cameras in their latest phones....

posted on 12 Sep 2013, 00:19

39. digicon (Posts: 121; Member since: 11 Aug 2011)

Yeah. The same with BlackBerry. When BB phone came out with 8mp they said, Once again, BB falls short. Now their beloved cr@pple comes out and they're all, Are we disappointed? Hell no ! Come on man . . .
(they even flagged at the bottom of my reply that you can't post the word cr@pple ! WTF ?)

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 14:58 1

11. amilcarmz86 (Posts: 95; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)

the same camera, different ways to take iphone buyers money... :)

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:01

13. Googler (Posts: 813; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)

TBO, I really don't understand the large megapixel cameras on phones. If you take an image at full size, it's far larger than what the average person needs. If you're taking professional shots, you'll be using a DSLR camera more often than not. A high quality, average sized shot is worth far more than an average huge shot, and takes far less memory to store.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:01 1

14. andro. (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)

" Apple refuses to participate",

this statement could be also applied to many cases for Apple,like trying to compete with other manufacturers fairly,like trying to innovate to actually beat your rivals,and how to not increase the price of your handsets and subsequent repairs year on year. Of course when it come to court cases apple is chomping out at the bit to participate!

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:04

16. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

why don't we get back to talking about cameras

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:02 1

15. Srinivas (Posts: 17; Member since: 12 Feb 2011)

That's because they are going to come up with the 12 MP innovation for the next iphone .

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:04 4

17. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1743; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)

They have to change something right?

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:05

18. _Bone_ (Posts: 2155; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)

BTW, no iPad5? Just about the only product that is still industry leader.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:13

21. liiikiii (Posts: 3; Member since: 23 Aug 2013)

I am an apple fan, i was hoping for 12 megapixel with f2.0 camera , battery is another fail .. They added another chip which i thing nobody cares about and they put same battery plus fingerprint sensor.. Everyone was hoping for bigger battery

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:19

24. .KRATOS. (Posts: 386; Member since: 15 Mar 2013)

Its not that they refuse its jst they wait to boost their camera with the iphone 6 cz the 5s its a minor upgrade.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:34 2

26. bubbadoes (Posts: 1225; Member since: 03 May 2012)

Apple is not competing in any war..the iPhone is so far behind Android phones there's no competition. the only competition Apple has is between iPhones

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 15:56 5

28. Jason2k13 (Posts: 1311; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)

try zooming and cropping with GS4 and iphone5S camera, and i can assure you the 13mp will be slightly better.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 16:05

29. dorianb (Posts: 612; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)

I think this is the part were I realize that Apple not actually making 80-90% of their device in-house hurts them. They can optimize the processor because it designed in-house. They are using someone else's camera sensor in this case. Of course it's still there software though. Now if they could design a camera sensor & subcontract the build, then I could see them competing with Nokia or Sony. Don't see a problem with them taking on HTC's megapixel.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 16:42 2

31. KashAli (Posts: 105; Member since: 01 Apr 2013)

R.I.P Apple.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 16:58

32. taz89 (Posts: 2014; Member since: 03 May 2011)

It's not about refusing it but the fact they know they can get away with it..I can pretty much guarantee they have kept the higher mp camera for the 6 as a USP.. Remember when apple said we don't need more than 5mp yh exactly trust me they will use a higher mp for the next model for sure.. Not saying 8 it's bad, far from it but to say some don't care about mp is not true just like people USSR to say some don't care for a smaller tablet or bigger screen, they care just being it out when they have to.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 18:42

33. jacko1977 (Posts: 428; Member since: 11 Feb 2012)

taken with a camera just not iphone 5same camera the results are better then what would come out of it

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 19:20 1

34. MDozey21 (Posts: 2; Member since: 09 Sep 2013)

Typical Phonearena sucking Apples Dicccccckk

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