In perhaps an unexpected move, a former senior vice president at Google has said that Android cameras are "years behind" the iPhone.
Former Google Senior Vice President, Social Vic Gundotra recently made a Facebook post in which he commended his iPhone 7 Plus' camera, saying: "The end of the DSLR for most people has already arrived." When a commenter mentioned that the Samsung S8 camera was superior, Gundotra disagreed, saying he would "never use an Android phone for photos." He went on further, noting that his issue was not with the hardware, but with the relationship with Google:
It’s because when Samsung innovates with the underlying hardware (like a better camera) they have to convince Google to allow that innovation to be surfaced to other applications via the appropriate API. That can take YEARS.
Also the greatest innovation isn’t even happening at the hardware level – it’s happening at the computational photography level. (Google was crushing this 5 years ago – they had had 'auto awesome' that used AI techniques to automatically remove wrinkles, whiten teeth, add vignetting, etc… but recently Google has fallen back).
Apple doesn’t have all these constraints. They innovate in the underlying hardware, and just simply update the software with their latest innovations (like portrait mode) and ship it.
Bottom line: If you truly care about great photography, you own an iPhone. If you don’t mind being a few years behind, buy an Android.
It's certainly a surprising sentiment to hear from someone who used to be so high up at Google, though complaints of fragmentation and the like have long plagued Android. As mobile phones continue to become important photography tools, it'll be interesting to see if and how Google addresses this.
[via 9 to 5 Mac]