PhoneArena Awards 2012: Best Cameraphone

PhoneArena Awards 2012: Best Cameraphone
Phones aren't just for calling anymore, and we bet that even your grandparents are well aware of that. Instead, taking photos is what smartphones are used for the most, as recent surveys have shown. And that should come as no surprise: most high-end smartphones can capture images so good that they are well capable of replacing an entry-level point and shoot camera. Therefore, including a 'Best Cameraphone' category in our PhoneArena Awards of 2012 seems quite logical to us. 

The best cameraphone of the year may be nothing impressive as a phone, but its photographic abilities are yet-to-be-matched by another handset. It is a product that required years of research, and the results are very impressive indeed, we have to admit. Perhaps our frequent readers already know what smartphone we have in mind.

Okay, time to cut straight to the chase! Go check out the cameraphones that impressed us the most this year, and don't hesitate to share your thoughts with us down in the comments! And so, the first place goes to...

Nokia 808 PureView

This wasn't too hard to guess, was it? Without a doubt, the Nokia 808 PureView is the year's best cameraphone - so good that it is commonly regarded as a point-and-shoot camera replacement with some phone functionality built in. And it isn't only about megapixels, altough with 41 of them, one can capture incredibly detailed images. (For a phone, that is.) You get features like lossless zooming - none of that digital stretching non-sense, both when shooting still photographs and while capturing video, even at 1080p. Moreover, the camera is smart enough to manipulate those millions of pixels and combine them producing a 5 or 8MP image that no other cameraphone can recreate.

Apple iPhone 5

Yes, the iPhone is on our podium for a second consecutive year, this time occupying place number two. And rightfully so as it is still one great cameraphone. Not only that photos taken with it look great under most conditions, but the camera interface is extremely easy to get around, while the camera app launches in a split second. What's more is that with the iPhone 5, Apple added panorama mode to the list of camera features capable of producing seemlessly stitched photographs at up to 28 megapixels. 

Samsung Galaxy S III

There was fierce competition for the third place in today's cameraphone category, yet ultimately, the Samsung Galaxy S III took over the spot. And it well deserves to be honored for a number of reasons: first of all, it takes detailed, true-to-life photos under most conditions, with virtually non-existent shutter lag. Moreover, you get a ton of handy features, such as the ability to take 20 shots in burst mode and then pick the best one among them and to snap full-res stills while shooting 1080p video.

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen: the Nokia808 PureView is the cameraphone of the year, followed by the iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S III. But keep in mind that we aren't quite done yet with the PhoneArena Awards of 2012. The next category will be annonced in 24 hours so stay tuned!

Story timeline



154. revs1227

Posts: 2; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

i dont go by what i read online anymore , ive put all of these up against the one x/s at every store and from what i have seen with my own eyes the HTC ONE series has the best camera 1HTC ONE X/S 2 GALAXY NOTE 2 3 IPHONE 5 4 NOKIA 4 GS3

152. ankush1987

Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 01, 2013

paid reviews ...all in favour of s**tty i phone.. lumia 920 camera is way better than i phone really a big disappointment

150. laixuewei

Posts: 1; Member since: Sep 04, 2012

how can you exclude 920 ? S3 ? i5 ? i think 920 killed both phone for camera !!! hyper biased stupid phonearena !!!!!

148. mohidinhusin

Posts: 2; Member since: Dec 27, 2012

hey, this is just my opinion.. SONY have the best camera of all time, from their name Sony Ericsson until they change to SONY.. they (phonearena) should, at least, give a model for each brand for each categories, like: BEST CAMERAPHONE 2012 Apple: iPhone 5 HTC : One X Nokia : Lumia 920 Samsung : SGNoteII Sony : Xperia T and lastly dont underestimate other product that you dont really know whether it is really good or is it really bad... peace(Y)

149. jameshoe unregistered

I don't think Sony has even a better camera sensor, if really, it should be on the list

151. mohidinhusin

Posts: 2; Member since: Dec 27, 2012

they are too BLIND to see the truth..hihi

147. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I think Nokia is going to sell a New pure vue Windows smart phone because of a patenent they filed recently in the USA. I bet it will be a great one.

146. EasycapExpertti

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

When we are talking about the cameraphones, so very importing thing is also how good it is to capture videos and when we talking about videos, so it is very important how good quality audio it can record. Nokia's Rich Recording technology is unbeatable at this moment and it due to mostly HAAC (High Amplitude Audio Capture) microphones which Nokia 808 Pureview and Nokia's WP8 serie's Lumia devices (920, 822, 820, 810, 620) have. With HAAC mics the recorded audio is distortion free also at the loudest music performances and it can record very low bass sound vs Nokia's rivals have nonHAAC mics and so the recorded audio at music concert recordings is mostly distorted and they can't capture low bass sound. In my opinion is that year 2012 the 6 best cameraphones are all Nokia's: 1. Nokia 808 PureView 2. Nokia Lumia 920 3. Nokia Lumia 822 4. Nokia Lumia 820 5. Nokia Lumia 810 6. Nokia Lumia 620

144. solomonsteve

Posts: 80; Member since: Dec 19, 2012

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!! No Lumia 920??? WTH??. iPhoneArena ,oh sorry i mean PhoneArena ,are u serious??. hahahaha. This list just made my day...

143. jameshoe unregistered

SGS3 shouldn't on the list!!!!

145. MC1123

Posts: 1256; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

ikr!! should be lumia 920!

142. zazori08

Posts: 113; Member since: Dec 21, 2011


125. aazan

Posts: 2; Member since: Jun 24, 2012

what about htc onex+

135. JohnnyBravo

Posts: 105; Member since: Dec 02, 2012

Probably the MOST underrated phone of 2012 no contest.

137. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

HTC's normally fail the camera competition for obvious reasons. Look at any camera comparisons.. everything tends to have an odd flat and green tint to it.

120. samystic

Posts: 242; Member since: Mar 25, 2012

ONLY for kickgolfer and other idiot Android fanbois who hijacked 'Most Innovative Product of 2012' page - still doubting 808's innovative aspect? look at this page and eat s**t... no doubt your Note2 has some really new (i won't call innovative), but 808's camera is innovative and deserves both the titles... topic over

118. SaM1X

Posts: 9; Member since: Dec 12, 2012

The list above is not sensible at all. They should have included, Nokia Lumia 920 - Windows Phone 8 category, Nokia Pureview 808 - Other Phones category, HTC One X - Android Phone Category. HTC phones got the best aperture on any smartphone,n dedicated ImageSense ISP really makes difference,look at One X's low light shots,much better than S3 and the iPhone 5, (Ya the iPhone 5). Phonearena you should stop favoring Apple and Samsung,its time to focus on whats better or whats not. THIS TOPIC FORCED ME TO REGISTER AND COMMENT. N it wasted my 5 precious mins.

134. JohnnyBravo

Posts: 105; Member since: Dec 02, 2012

If you think about it PA ended up the winner here if it forced you to register in order to comment. ;) I agree when it comes to the One X, it should have definitely been on the list.

117. anshul0000 unregistered

xperia ion?

116. Adithya7184 unregistered

lolzzzz Galaxy S3 beats the 920...ha ha ha

111. andyPA

Posts: 5; Member since: Dec 06, 2012

Lumia 920 carrying same technology as PureView 808 even though it doesn't have the huge 41MP sensor of the Nokia 808, maybe PA reviewer only provide an opportunity for another brands to shine. But why Xperia T not nominated in this category? since iPhone 5 camera powered by Sony sensor...

110. Shubham412302

Posts: 596; Member since: Nov 09, 2011

though phonearena says iphone is better but tgis fact cant be changed that lumia is better and why you didnt take n8 in mind it was old but one of the best camera phone

105. raphz

Posts: 37; Member since: Oct 22, 2012

iphonearena and now also known as samsungarena

101. JohnnyBravo

Posts: 105; Member since: Dec 02, 2012

Whoah, Im surprised by the Saumsung entry on this list. I knew a Nokia phone would be listed along with the iPhone but the S3? I am no fanboy or take any sides but I didnt think Samsung produced phones with great cameras?! I thought they were ok but to make this list? I thought top three would entail a Nokia phone, the iPhone 5, and a HTC phone. I thought HTC with the One X series had an amazing camera. Was I misled? sidenote: All smartphones that come with a built in camera should also come with a built in camera button! Who else is with me?!?!?!?

108. MC1123

Posts: 1256; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

yeah..should be lumia 920!! it just put s3 and even oneX to dust!

99. MC1123

Posts: 1256; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

Lol this is all mess up!!! Where's the xperia TX and the Lumia 920???

97. Raymond_htc

Posts: 430; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

Heres what it should be! 1ST: Nokia 808 Pureview 2ND: Nokia Lumia 920 3RD: HTC One X iPhone 5 don't deserve a 2nd place!

91. SemperFiV12

Posts: 949; Member since: Nov 09, 2010

PhoneArena Awards 2012: Best Nokia Smartphone: 1) Apple iPhone 2) Samsung Galaxy S3 3) Samsung Note 2 4) Apple iPad 5) Apple TV

100. Raymond_htc

Posts: 430; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

What a iPad and a TV console as a phone.......u'r brilliant.

89. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

That is the one thing that iphone has going for it - stale OS, but pretty good camera.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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