Mobile operating systems have begun making their way into digital cameras, but so far their foray has been limited to compact and mirrorless cameras. However, DSLRs are starting to have built-in Wi-Fi, but it seems to be only a matter of time before a full-fledged mobile OS appears in one.
Apparently some photographers (and Photoshoppers) over in China can’t wait for that day to arrive. There’s a series of viral images floating around showing Canon and Nikon DSLRs running various operating systems and programs.
It’s been a long time coming, but today the popular photo snapping and sharing app Instagram finally launched for Android phones. While it offers the same filters as its iOS counterpart, the new app has a look and feel that’s geared towards Android’s interface. Some features are absent from the initial release (e.g. tilt shift, blur, live preview), but upcoming updates will bridge the gaps. The app is available as a free download from Google Play.
Instagram [Google Play]
Back in January, Polaroid unveiled its SC1630 Smart Camera that’s powered with Google’s Android operating system. Now, more manufacturers may be gearing up to have the popular smartphone OS built into their cameras: Samsung and Panasonic are both reportedly exploring this idea. Regarding what this means for consumers, Engadget writes,
It could be a major breakthrough from a usability standpoint, opening up the in-camera ecosystem to third-party developers. We could see Twitter and Facebook apps that let you not only publish your photos directly with a familiar interface, but also see photos shared by your friends. A capacitive touchscreen would let you type in comments directly as well. You could publish to web-based services, utilize apps that enable post-capture creativity or receive firmware updates directly over WiFi. That hotshoe or USB port could accommodate a variety of different accessories, like a microphone or 4G modem that could be used with several models, including those from other manufacturers.
One potential downside to having an Android-powered camera may be stability — imagine having to regularly reboot your frozen camera.
(via Engadget & Ubergizmo)
Image credit: Samsung NX10 camera by liewcf
The private photographs on your phone might not be as private as you think. Earlier this week, the New York Times reported that iOS has a loophole that allows third-party apps who have access to location information to also access (and copy) your entire photo library without any further notification or warning. A couple days later, Android was also found to have a loophole that’s even worse — any app that can access the Internet can copy photos to a remote server! Both companies have acknowledged the privacy flaws and are currently working on fixes for them. Welcome to the scary world of Internet-connected cameras!
(via The Verge via Engadget)
Image credit: iPhone Camera by Nico Kaiser
The Microsoft team tasked with building Windows 8 has published a blog post with various user suggestions they’ve decided to implement in the OS. A big thing they’re focusing on is file management — something that isn’t usually touted as a “feature” but is important in day-to-day computer usage. One useful improvement is having the OS read the EXIF data in JPEG photos to automatically present the correct orientation.
Fox News is reporting that HP is in talks with potential buyers of its webOS mobile operating system, which it obtained back in April 2010 after acquiring Palm for $1.2 billion. One of the potential buyers is surprising though:
Sources on the WebOS team say that HP is actively meeting with a number of interested buyers including HTC, LG, Nikon, and Amazon.
Just think: [...] a WebOS-powered camera from Nikon? That would be a Halloween treat indeed.
Nikon? Really? Why would they be looking at buying a mobile operating system? Perhaps they’re seeing that cameras are starting to feel more like computers and want to take advantage of the shift — the iPhone’s camera is certainly one that’s backed by a powerful operating system.
(via Fox News via Nikon Rumors)
The latest version of Android, called “Ice Cream Sandwich”, was unveiled by Google and Samsung in Hong Kong this morning, and they’ve focused a great deal on improving the gallery and camera aspects of the mobile OS. There is indeed built-in photo editing now, allowing users to do everything from crop and rotate to adjust levels and remove red eyes. There are also a number of Instagram-style filters that can be applied to photos. Adjustments are non-destructive and stored in a file separate from the photo being edited.
The camera has also been upgraded with zero shutter lag, touch-to-focus with exposure lock, panorama stitching, 1080p recording, and time-lapse video mode. The UI has been improved with a digital zoom slider, and many of the editing options (including red eye removal) can be used in “live view”. The war between smartphones goes on, and photography continues to be one of the main battlegrounds.
Android 4.0 Platform Highlights [Android Developers]
This past week we ran a poll asking our readers what operating system they mainly use. Here are the results:
481 votes were for a Windows OS compared to 606 for a Mac OS. This means roughly 49% of our readers who decided to vote use Macs, while 39% use some form of Windows.
Assuming that most people who took the time to vote in our poll are fairly serious about photography (we’re a photography blog, after all), we can say this poll is a glimpse at operating system choices among photographers.
Now lets take a look at what Google Analytics tell us about the OS breakdown of our visitors:
This takes into account all of our visitors, regardless of whether or not they vote. Since this includes loyal readers as well as people who simply pass by, the average interest in photography is probably much less than those who chose to vote. Windows leads 66% to Mac’s 29%.
However, this still shows that our readers are, on average, quite different from the general population. Here’s the breakdown of OS use among the general Internet population:
Thus, Mac jumps from having a 5.9% market share in the general population to 49% among photographers. If we were a blog read only by professional photographers, I’d expect the percentage to be even higher.
Any thoughts on these statistics?
Image credit: Kick Boxing… by claudiogennari