Apple iPhone 7

It's actually quite reassuring (for us photographers) to know that tech reviewers and journalists seem to know very little about photography. Plus at the IPhone 7 announcement Apple didn't show much grasp either. They got some details wrong, including saying the current 6s camera has a 28mm lens. A cropped 4mm lens in front of a small sensor giving an approximate 35mm 'equivalent' of 31mm is closer to the truth. Plus a 56mm 'equivalent' is hardly a telephoto. However, what Apple have come up with is almost revolutionary for smartphones. Two prime lenses on the 7 plus - Wide(r) angle at f/1.8 plus additional 2x lens at f/2.8. The clever bit is combining the capture of both cameras to reduce noise and allow a higher quality 'digital zoom', plus with a promised update a software created 'bokeh / shallow depth of field' effect'. Still 12MP, but with the promise of faster and better in camera processing.

What also emerged and was passed over very quickly was that the iPhone 7 will shoot raw .dng files and allow IOS apps like Lightroom to 'develop' them. Which presumably will mean that IOS 10, releasing in just over a week will have to recognise them. Now all of this has hardly made any articles about the phone and like a group of mindless sheep all the journalists are getting hot and bothered about the removal of the headphone jack. As if somehow headphone leads were a good thing! When in fact they are a PITA. 

So is this good news for photographers? Well if the image quality is up to scratch, the answer is probably yes. Because it seems that the camera division is prioritising quality photography. In the past Apple have always talked up their cameras, often with a pretty average level of image quality to show that for the BS that it actually is and they have been overtaken by other manufacturers models including the Microsoft 950X which I've been raving about ever since I bought it and the Panasonic CM1, which is pretty much a camera with a phone attached, but is a smartphone none the less. If the iPhone 7 plus delivers anything like what Apple claim it does then this could be a serious option for serious photographers. 

The two models I mentioned above already deliver images that are threatening stand alone cameras, including many low end DSLR's and mirrorless cameras, in good light, because both shoot raw files. But they are restricted by being one fixed lens cameras. The two lens system on the iPhone 7 plus promises to add greater versatility beyond what the Nokia and Panasonic can offer.

So, I'm hoping that this new iPhone camera delivers the goods, since I'd love something that light and small (in camera terms) to carry around, with more than one lens option and something that has better image quality than my Samsung K zoom smartphone. Who knows, I might even be able to stick a pair of the new wireless headphones in my ears, open up GarageBand and mix down a few tracks at the same time. Now that would be something!!