Annie Leibovitz Leaves Apple Behind to Endorse Pixel

Annie Leibovitz Leaves Apple Behind to Endorse Pixel

Long revered as the top smartphone camera while still playing second or third fiddle in the market, Google has managed a coup in luring legendary American portrait photographer Annie Leibovitz as an official user and backer.

Notably, it's the first time Leibovitz has formally partnered with any make of camera (despite having previously intimated a strong hankering for the iPhone 4s as her "snapshot camera" of choice back in 2011). Google's latest Pixel 3 (and Pixel 3 XL) currently sit near the top of the heap of increasingly high-quality smartphone cameras. Groundbreaking new features of the front and rear-facing cameras include being powered by artificial intelligence via Google's cutting edge Pixel Visual Core chip. Highlight AI features include two new algorithmic shooting modes called Top Shot and Photobooth. Other features to note are Super Res Zoom and Night Sight.  

This release and marketing partnership further solidify the smartphone as an alternative to traditional imaging camera equipment. Google has also announced it has provided publishing giant Condé Nast with Pixel 3 phones, which its photographers have used to shoot seven of its magazine covers. While Apple continues to outflank Google in a very competitive market sector, with the Pixel 3, Google offers the strongest argument for leaving your DSLR at home. 

What are your thoughts? For what situations would you willfully ditch your "real" camera for a smartphone stand-in?

Log in or register to post comments


I would assume Google brought a lot of money to the table.

michael buehrle's picture

absolutely they did.

user-156929's picture

And don't forget, if Annie Leibovitz endorses a phone... so what!?

Lance Bachelder's picture

Nice one... waiting for your press release from Google.... still waiting... nothing?

user-156929's picture

I have no idea what you're talking about but I'm guessing you don't either. :-/

Lance Bachelder's picture

You know exactly what I'm talking about - you've made over a thousand comments but never posted ONE photo. You're a troll and an imposter and should crawl back in your hole.

user-156929's picture

Well, you're wrong twice.

First: I had no idea what you were talking about. I'm not surprised you're calling me a liar since people often measure others by their own yard stick and most people lie.

Second: I haven't posted any photos to my profile because I don't really care what anyone on this site thinks about them, good or bad but, on occasion, I add one to a comment to illustrate a point I'm making. On a more basic level, I rarely comment on anyone's work but in those few instances, there's nothing wrong with it, just as there's nothing wrong with telling the chef his soup sucks or is wonderful, even if you can't boil water. So, no! Not a troll and not having represented myself in any way, I can't be an imposter.

Perhaps you thought I was saying something bad about Ms. Leibovitz. If that's the case, I wasn't. I was pointing out the irrelevancy of anyone's, including hers, endorsement of a product. Their only purpose is to attract customers, unsure of themselves.

And finally, for your edification, here's a photo I took at the zoo. Sorry I couldn't find a selfie of me looking thoughtfully at a lens. ;-) I don't have access right now to the bulk of my photos and don't post anything I've been paid to shoot. Happy?

mlittle's picture

Lance is what we call either a liberal or a fan boy (most likely both). Either way, when you challenge one of those classes of people you will get attacked. I saw nothing in your comment to warrant his response but you are now a racist, bigot, homophobic, transphobic and you probably raped someone in 1982. I hope you don't ever intend to run for public office because your insensitive comment will be used against you.

user-156929's picture

I don't know. I think he thought I was dissing (I hope I used, and spelled, that right) Annie Liebovitz. While I don't care much for her portraiture, I'm sure she's a nice person. :-) It's easy to misunderstand someone's meaning on blogs. There've been a lot of times I thought I meant one thing until some good Samaritan enlightened me. ;-)

Tim Ericsson's picture

Hey Michael: relax. Nobody mentioned liberalism, racism, homophobia, etc. Let's stick to photography and spare us your worldview and obsessions.

user-206386's picture

Well this comment is like a breath of fresh air to this snowflake.

Was Apple paying her to endorse the iPhone?

To my knowledge Apple doesn’t pay any influencers to endorse their phones (maybe this changed?).

Article should be titled “Annie Leibovitz Leaves Apple Behind to Endorse Pixel Due to Big Bag of Money”.


“Annie Leibovitz is Now a Google Pixel 3 Ambassador” instead of click baiting fake tech rivalries.

Mike Schrengohst's picture

It means absolutely nothing.....13 year old girls that ask daddy for a Goggle phone have no idea who Annie Leibovitz is. And anyone under the age of 40 probably has no idea who she is. If it makes Google feel good to drop millions on an oldesters endorsement then Yay Google.....

user-156929's picture

"oldester"? <sic> She's only 69! Get off my lawn!! >:-(

Tim Ericsson's picture

I'm under 40 and know who she is. Let's not make generalized statements about age groups. That's what cranky old geezers over 40 do.

user-156929's picture

Really? Cranky old geezers!? Say that to my face and I'll beat you with my cane! ;-)

Is there anyone that would really be swayed to buy the Pixel 3 because of Annie Leibovitz? I figure people would buy their phones based on the features and, to some, the "prestige" it adds to a one's status.

Oh, and people would also buy their phones based on what's available. It's so hard to find Pixels that are readily available outside of the US and a few number of other countries. How can Google expect to maximize their profits if people can't get access to their products.

Robert Nurse's picture

You'd be surprised. Is there anyone that would really be swayed to buy the (Insert-Product-Here) because of (Insert-Public-Figure-here)? Clearly Google and most of Madison Ave thinks so. Me, personally, no. But for a significant number of people, her artistry (if they've heard of her) could sway people to think that phone would help them take pictures like Leibovitz.

Who cares, and why should we? She probably changed soap brands, soup brands, TP brands and more. She never calls me anyway! Oh, the PIxel 3 takes pictures . . . hmm, I thought it was the photographer who takes pictures.
You guys must have lousy keyboards to churn out crap like this every day.

Definitely the best phone camera around, but she was obviously paid. I'm sure Google hopes influence some of her followers to pick up a Pixel

Tim Gallo's picture

"Notably, it's the first time Leibovitz has formally partnered with any make of camera”
So whats up with the fake article title? In order to "leave" Apple she should be partnered with it... of which there is no evidence. She just said she liked shooting with iPhone, once... of which there is no evidence if she was paid to say that or not.
Joanne, as an award-winning outdoor photographer, writer, and expedition leader I am pretty sure you can do better...

Tim Gallo's picture

btw, there is a lot of cases when photographers back-up some brand, do workshops for them and endorse them... how about smartphones... is there cases when famous photographers backs them up? what came out of it?
now you have something to write about in this article. not just re-write what you saw on Verge :)

Of course it’s important for the image of the company. And most people who are not deep into slr or dslr will surely like to see such ambassadors on pixels. Even an mkbhd endorsement will get most people excited. Unless it’s dbrand.

Sure pixel is one of the best camera phone. Most intelligent camera to date too. It baked a lot of tech and does it very elegantly. Definitely ahead of Apple now. Huawei makes really good camera phones too with quite amazing tech too. The 2 maybe quite comparable, but google is cheap and they only can make one sensor for the back. Huawei ai zoom is quite good even at 5x. Long exposure with ai stabilisation may even match night sight. Top shot is just a brilliant mix of always on burst shot/live photo, with HDR+ using adjoining frames. And with unlimited Google photos storage you shouldn’t have to worry about these burst photos. Apple did a lot to match HDR+ in the day, but it needs more tuning.

Jon Kellett's picture

"Google offers the strongest argument for leaving your DSLR at home." - Really, I thought that was Nikon/Canon/Sony with their mirrorless offerings /trolling

Sorry, couldn't resist! :-)

Wonder Woman's picture

I just sold all of my camera equipment based on this article and ordered a Pixel 3.
Thanks Annie!

user-156929's picture


And everything is A.I. now....where is the motiv finder :(

Jan Kruize's picture

Wow.... Annie has a new smartphone, that'swhat we call big news.

Kyle Medina's picture

"This release and marketing partnership further solidify the smartphone as an alternative to traditional imaging camera equipment."


Michael Coen's picture


More comments