Here are 2015's smartphones with the fastest cameras: speed is crucial


In photography, the difference between a masterpiece and a total failure can be measured in seconds or even fractions of a second. Let's be honest here, folks, 90% of the pictures you take in a hurry turn out to be totally unusable and quickly get deleted so that you don't get embarrassed before anyone who wants to explore your gallery. 

Photography, as you are certainly aware, is complex. There's are so many factors that determine the quality of a given photo that we are not sure if we can list them all at all. That said, there is one crucial aspect of modern smartphone's cameras that truly gives a meaning to the "hit or miss" phrase: the speed with which our handsets take pictures.

The vast majority of phones that have ever ventured in our HQ have had their cameras extensively tested, not only regarding the quality they produce, but also their photo-taking speed. We measure this manually, by calculating the amount of time for opening the camera app, taking a picture, and being ready to take another one.

Now, have in mind that we are not measuring the auto-focusing prowess of these devices. Yes, this important metric also affects the speed of the camera, but it's not the subject of this article. Without further ado, here follow 2015's phones with the fastest cameras. 



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64 Comments

1. VVayne

Posts: 103; Member since: Oct 01, 2015

Well, the data does not include the time to start the camera application. S6 family with doublepress to start to camera wins hands down. on iPhone you have to do at least 3 separate touches across the screen (unlock, start app, take picture). Other than that, iPhone takes pictures really fast.

6. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

It's a fluff piece as usual. They have to fill their quota of iPhone praising so they picked an aspect of the camera that literally matter the least to most buyers. Would have looked less suspicious if they compared several camera aspects between flagship phones. But when you pick that one single characteristic that the iPhone wins on (the only aspect that it wins this generation) to base a whole article on, you might as well label it a fluff piece and save people time.

13. AlikMalix unregistered

There are other tests that PA does on mobile cameras... just scroll down... why are you always complaining and whining everytime Apple takes the cake... "PA fill their quota", "paid by Apple", "PA buncha iSheep" and so on.. stop acting like such a butthurt crybaby. I dont agree with everything on PA, and many times PA doesnt post news that I find huge compared to some little stuff that no one cares about... for example, just today: 1. Apple lowers prices for Australian app store, 2. iWork and iCloud apps are out of beta (finally), 3.Adobe just got hit by huge Flash Player vulnerability.. but guess what - there are many other news-sites out there... -- if you dont believe anything PA states and they're all so freaken biased - why even waste your time here? Huh?

39. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

"why are you always complaining and whining everytime Apple takes the cake..." Same thing you do, when they don't. RIGHT? Look who's calling the kettle black. LMAO. I'm not going to fret over a few seconds. I know as a matter of fact the camera on the S6 models and the Note 5 all open faster and take pictures faster than the iPhone. I can only assume this is after the application is open. But side by side tests have show the S6 to be considerably faster. Not only is it faster, the S6 has better quality. This guy always does a fair comparison of Galaxy vs iPhone. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aybrBYKmqZg The quality of the video is better, the quality of the photo is better, the mic recording is better...all on the S6. For me this is what I suggest of all readers of biased blog sites. Go on YouTube where the reviews are not based on bias. Where the person isn't getting paid by one side or the other. Where the reviewer is reasonably fair. Because facts are facts and the facts show the S6 camera even being 8 years old and being used on several Galaxy devices including but not limited too, all the S6 models, Note 5, A9 and more. In fact "some" 20MP cameras arent even as good. The Lumia is still the king, but no phone really has 40MP cameras as a standard yet. But once they do and it gets compared, the Lumia will look ancient.

40. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

You can see in the video I posted where the guy did a side by side of 2 objects in low light and you can see the S6 focused in faster vs the iPhone. So I dont know what PA does and I really don't care. They can claim whatever they want...but videos don't lie. For the 6S to be brand new, it should be smoking a camera that is nearly a year old and it simply doesn't.

41. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

42. Ninetysix

Posts: 2965; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

All I hear is Galaxy S6 reload reload reload reload reload.

18. VVayne

Posts: 103; Member since: Oct 01, 2015

Not really. Taking correctly focused and exposed pictures on iPhone is super easy and super fast. So the results of the test are believable. But to get to point where you can actually start taking pictures, you have to keep in mind that is can take some seconds fo fire up the camera application.

8. AlikMalix unregistered

Why do you need to "unlock, start app, take picture" on the iPhone? Just swipe up from the lock screen (see camera icon on bottom of right corner)... (Double tap on home button opens Apple Pay - which I use as frequent as a camera...)

16. VVayne

Posts: 103; Member since: Oct 01, 2015

Have you used one of the 6S phones? It's a bit complex than that. Touch ID is extremly fast, you can't press the home button with the finger you've mapped your touch ID to, then even when you unlock it, there has to be the animation of unlocking and after that you can start taking pictures. If you use touch ID and disable it for unlocking the phone, you have to put in the PIN everytime. You can stop using touch ID globally, but then you won't have the benefit of one-touch-purchase, and your phone's data won't have encryption, which is on only with touch-id configured. And Apple Pay is enabled in supported countries. I see your point. It can be done like you think it can be done, Samsung is still faster when launching the camera. My point was not to raise an argument, it's just that the numbers don't tell the whole story. Like the Antutu results for S808, like the battery tests for different A9 chips, like the specs on Z5 compact, which make the phone stutter.

19. AlikMalix unregistered

That's fair. The Touch ID is extremely fast - most of the time it unlocks before you see the lock screen. But I've been using it for a few days now and the muscle memory does suggest not to place finger on Touch ID if u want to see lock screen but instead clock on power button either way the swipe up will bring up either the camera or the control center that does have a camera there. And I don't disagree with you, double press on home button is convenient, but I prefer it to enable Apple Pay.

34. j2001m

Posts: 3061; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

I take the one step longer it take to turn on Samsung pay over having the faster cam load on Samsung phones

54. darkkjedii

Posts: 31310; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I now use my thumb tip to turn it on. I can't believe how friggin fast Touch ID is, crazy fast, and reliable.

10. Leo999

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 15, 2015

iOS has a camera shortcut on the lock screen.

35. j2001m

Posts: 3061; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

Hm, I. Think you need to see pocketnow review of the iPhone, to se you have a problem with that

36. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

It also is on the S6. Point?

51. AlikMalix unregistered

Stop replying out of context, you fandroids always do this. Read the damn post that he replied to and stop asking stupid questions.

52. chromoid

Posts: 37; Member since: Oct 03, 2013

You can make the iPhone Launch the camera from the home button with ios 9 nit sure if this applicable in older versions

55. darkkjedii

Posts: 31310; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Yeah, turn on, swipe up and take pic. Note 5, double click, and take pic. That's 3 for both.

2. QWERTYphone

Posts: 654; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

LG G4? LG v10?

4. PeterK.

Posts: 314; Member since: Nov 13, 2013

LG G4 - 2.7s. We have not reviewed the V10 yet.

7. Ashoaib

Posts: 3298; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

and what about Z5 Peter?

9. PeterK.

Posts: 314; Member since: Nov 13, 2013

After we review the Z5, it shall be added in the list if it's camera is fast enough, don't worry.

59. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2265; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

yeah, Z5 of the 0.03 sec auto focus should be fast to take pics.hopefully.

30. AndroidStuff

Posts: 47; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

WTF PA ? MY LG G4 takes a pic in less than 2 seconds for sure ... in any mode. what kind of results do u always show ? and im pretty sure you guys are seriously behind apple in everything. every article is being biased

3. TyrionLannister unregistered

The difference in time between S6, Note 5, S6 edge+ and S6 edge tells us how unreliable PA's tests are. You guys should do more than 10 runs and take the mean. That's how you test anything statistically to reduce the error. The same is true about your benchmarks. I'm not bashing, just constructive criticism. Hope you guys listen and improve; that's all I want.

12. phonearenarocks

Posts: 607; Member since: Mar 26, 2015

Hey! I like most of you comments over these months that I am in here...but I dont think PA guys give throw numbers with a single test. Me, not bashing you either, these are just the thoughts in my head. Even if it has been told that the Camera on S6 Edge+ and Note 5 is same as one on S6 and S6 Edge, since Sammy had around 5 months time, they could have improved the camera on them.

14. TyrionLannister unregistered

Even if the ones on Note 5 and /s6 edge+ are better, there shouldn't be a gap between the S6, edge and the active.

23. Shocky unregistered

Different firmwares can account for that, it's not that strange.

47. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

I would agree. PA seems to assume that just because all devices use identical hardware, that a newer device using it wont have any improvement. Facts show that a newer device sporting the same hardware, simply handles hardware differently. For example, even tho the S6, S6 Edge, S6 Active, S6 Edge+ and Note 5 are all using the same CPU, maybe even the same internal storage type, same RAM type; each device isn't going to work exactly the same. Considering the Note has to lift a heavier version of TouchWiz, Samsung could have did other thinsg to improve its speed to compensate, that wouldnt need to be done with the S6 models. Also with the S6 Edge+ being larger even though it sports the same resolution display, again Samsung could have done other things to optimize the firmware as you stated to compensate. The fact is, PA keeps choosing the S6 likely because it physical size is very similar to the iPhone 6. So I say a better test of the camera would be the iPhone 6S Plus vs the S6 Edge+ vs the Note 5. That way we are testing 3 devices that have a release gap of only a month vs comparing device where the S6 is already 7 months old vs a device that just came out about a month ago.

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