Ditching High-End Cameras for Smartphones

Ditching High-End Cameras for Smartphones

Smartphone makers have been putting more emphasis on cameras and picture quality in recent years. It has become a huge selling point and source for competition among companies. But will smartphones ever top DSLRs or mirrorless cameras? Will consumers stop purchasing high-end cameras in the future?

The way things are going right now, it is a possibility, but it all depends on the development of high-end cameras as well. Development of smartphone camera technology has skyrocketed – if this development is continued, they will be able to produce images of equal and possibly greater quality than high-end cameras.

Smartphone Cameras vs High-End Cameras

Although smartphone cameras are advancing at a tremendous rate, people often forget that camera sensor technology on high-end cameras is also always improving. The technology of cameras may not be changing as quickly as smartphone technology, but there are still improvements being made. Everything is relative.

In the years to come, smartphone cameras will probably have the capabilities of high-end cameras we have today, but at that point where will high-end cameras be? They will have even more capabilities and smartphone cameras will most likely always be trying to keep up. Right now, DSLRs and mirrorless cameras have a leg up, because they have much bigger sensors, more functions and interchangeable lenses for different subjects.

Ditching High-End Cameras for Smartphones

As for smartphone camera technology, many can shoot raw files as well as JPEG, which gives the consumer more control over editing than ever before. HDR photos can also be taken in raw, which allows for a much higher dynamic range. In tests done with the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Nikon D610, it can be seen that the Nikon is superior because it has more control over things like shutter speed, field of view, and chroma (color) noise.

However, the Galaxy still held its own and did well, especially for a smartphone. It can capture amazing pictures, and the advantage it has, is that it is handheld, easy to use and travel with. What’s more exciting is that the Samsung Galaxy S8 is not even the tip of the iceberg when it comes to smartphone camera technology. There have been numerous recent advances making the image quality even better.

Race For a Better Smartphone Camera

Recently, top smartphone producing companies have been putting a lot of focus on development of their cameras. Samsung’s newest phones, the S9 and S9+, are equipped with a lens that intelligently switches between apertures to capture the best image in any type of light. This technology makes the smartphone more like a high-end camera in the sense that there is now control over how much light is let in (aperture), depending on how much light is in the image the user wants to capture.

Galaxy S9 Camera

However, it is inferior because rather than having a range of apertures, it switches between a large aperture and a small aperture. iPhone has been using a duo lens since the 7, and have been working on improving image quality year after year. The iPhone X boasts a secondary 2x telephoto lens that lets you zoom without losing image quality.

Apple iPhone X Camera

When it comes down to it, Samsung and Apple phones both take photos with similar quality. Google has taken a different approach to camera technology. They are using AI instead of hardware, such as camera lenses with different features. With AI, Google Pixel phones can merge multiple images at different exposures to create one image with all the best qualities and details. It can also be used to create a portrait mode effect by applying machine learning to a photo to find the background and the blur it needs. This is called computational photography and it gives companies the ability to take out the limitations that hardware can create for phones.

Google Pixel 2 Camera

However, Huawei’s new camera technology is starting to make some noise.

Huawei’s Rear-Facing Camera Trio

The most promising new smartphone camera technology comes from Huawei, and it combines both, hardware and software elements to get a revolutionary system for better images.

  • Main Camera

    Smartphones have been equipped with two rear-facing cameras since 2014. Now, Huawei is making things interesting by adding another. The company’s P20 Pro phone has three cameras where each have a specific role to improve image quality. All of the cameras will create a computational camera by feeding photo and video data to powerful processors.

    Huawei P20 Pro Camera

    The main camera is a typical smartphone camera that shoots at a resolution of 40 megapixels, which are then combined into 2×2 groups to create 10 megapixel images with incredible quality. In the past, more megapixels would be a problem for smartphones, because they only have a small sensor. However, the P20 has a sensor about twice the size of other phones, so it catches more light that leads to less noise in images.

  • Telephoto Camera

    The telephoto camera of the P20 Pro is something that was first found in the iPhone 7 Plus – giving us Portrait Mode. On the P20, it includes an 8 megapixel sensor and a smaller sensor along with a lens sitting in front of it. The lens is telephoto glass and allows the user to have a much narrower field of view, which is similar to an 80mm lens on a DSLR. While the lens has optical image stabilization built in to prevent blurry pictures, it does not let in as much light as the main camera, due to the smaller sensor which is similar to the size of sensors on other smartphone cameras.

  • Secondary Camera

    The third camera is the secondary camera, consisting of a 20 megapixel camera that shoots in strictly black and white. Its purpose is to give image data to other imaging devices on the phone, which is a game changer when it comes to new technology for smartphone cameras. This camera is able to look out into a scene and grab data that can be used by the phone for computational photography. It helps do things like estimate the distance images are from the front of the lens and capturing finer details due to its lack of color filters for determining hues in an image. This leads to added detail during digital zoom with minimal loss of image quality, along with better low-light performance.

    Tests have shown that this allows the camera to have a maximum ISO of 102,000+, which is as good as some DSLRs that are using high-end sensors. Essentially, the secondary, monochrome camera is a support for the main camera, allowing it to reach heights that high-end cameras reach, which is a huge step. Smartphone cameras may never pass up high-end cameras, but they will come close, and having something like that in your pocket will allow for much easier access to amazing pictures.

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5 Best VPNs for Android Phones

5 Best VPNs for Android Phones

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is your company’s private, internal network. This is a safe and encrypted network in which you can safely and securely store your business’ applications and resources. Today it’s important to understand that your Android’s VPN does everything on your phone or tablet that it would do on your desktop computer.

As such, there’s no reason your business shouldn’t have one today. Of course, you don’t want to simply choose just any Android VPN. Instead, you should consider using one of the 5 best VPNs for Android phones available today.

Vypr VPN

Vypr VPN

This is one of the few Android VPNs that allow you to control its entire network infrastructure. The result of this is a really fast connection speed. This is regardless of where in the world you’re located, since they have servers in over 70 different countries and allow you to select your own port.

Some of the other great benefits of Vypr VPN include:

  • A great selection of features
  • “Chameleon” stealth servers and technology – especially great when visiting places like China or Iran
  • Smart DNS service
  • No usage logs
  • Robust customer service

Express VPN

Express VPN

When you need a simplified VPN for Android, this is it. Based in the British Virgin Islands, these “stealth” servers offer a lot of great features, including:

  • Great customer service available 24/7
  • Easy to use
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • No usage logs, but there are some connection (metadata) logs
  • Servers in 94 countries
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P)
  • 3 simultaneous connections
  • Free Smart Domain Name System (DNS)

Nord VPN

Nord VPN

Located in Panama, Nord VPN lies well outside the reach of the National Security Agency (NSA). As such, they’re very security focused. Unfortunately, this can make it really slow at times. However, it does have a lot of other great features that make up for this. They include:

  • Servers in 61+ countries
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • “Double-hop VPN” chaining feature
  • Keeps no logs at all
  • Uses strong encryption
  • Accepts payment via Bitcoins
  • A dedicated Android VPN client with the option to use the Internet Key Exchange version 2 (IKEv2) protocol
  • Allows torrenting
  • DNS leak protection
  • Per-app kill switch available for desktop clients



Since IPVanish is based in the U.S.A, it’s not recommended for those who have concerns regarding NSA. Unfortunately, the support is also average at best. However, there are several reasons why this is considered to be one of the 5 best VPNs for Android phones. These reasons include:

  • Keeps no logs at all
  • Allows for 5 simultaneous connections
  • Smart DNS included for free
  • Accepts Bitcoin
  • P2P allowed
  • Good privacy credentials
  • Permits torrenting

Hide My Ass

Hide My Ass (HMA)

HMA has the market’s largest server network, servicing over 190 countries today, allowing for 2 simultaneous connections. While this may sound great, a lot of people say there’s a serious lack of privacy here because HMA keeps extensive logs. Unfortunately, they’ve been known to hand this information over to authorities when requested.

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Samsung Galaxy S9 VS Apple iPhone X

Samsung Galaxy S9 VS Apple iPhone X

Samsung’s newest phones, the Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus, will be released on March 16th. Their top priority right now is keeping up with Apple, who released their iPhone X just months before. Samsung needs something that consumers will want to choose over the iPhone, so that they can remain relevant in the smartphone game. So, how does the Samsung Galaxy S9 compare to the Apple iPhone X so far?

Aesthetics of The Samsung Galaxy S9 and Apple iPhone X

When it comes to the design of the Galaxy S9, there are a few differences from the iPhone X. While size doesn’t vary much – the S9 is 163 grams, the S9 Plus is 189 grams, and the iPhone X is right in the middle at 174 grams – the screen does. iPhones all have the notch at the top of their screens and the iPhone X is no different.

Aesthetics of The Samsung Galaxy S9 and Apple iPhone X

However, Samsung opted to keep the notch off and make the screen simply one big rectangle. As usual, the bezels (space between frame and screen of phone) on the Galaxy S9 are extremely thin, but this time around the iPhone X’s are thinner. This is something new for Apple as they have always made their bezels a little wider. Customers will have to decide if they prefer the thinner bezels, or a screen without a notch. Either way, the phones are quite similar in this aspect.

Galaxy S9 VS iPhone X: Hardware and Performance

It’s hard to gauge real-world performance of the S9 right now, since it has not officially been released yet. In the past, iPhones have always had a leg up in this department, because they run Apple’s own iOS operating system which allows it to take full advantage of the hardware.

Samsung Galaxy S9 Hardware and Performance

The iPhone X uses the A11 Bionic Chip while Samsung’s Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus will be equipped with either the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 or it’s own Samsung Exynos 9810 chip, depending on what country you buy it in. Although real-world performance can’t be tested yet, the Snapdragon 845 has been benchmarked in a non-retail phone to get an idea of how it performs compared to the A11 Bionic chip. It didn’t pass up Apple in the benchmark tests, but that’s not to say Samsung’s chips won’t be powerful; they will still be able to compete with Apple in many ways, and no matter what phone you choose, it will be powerful.


When it comes to storage, Samsung is giving customers a cheaper way to get more storage. Apple has always allowed you to buy their phones with a set amount of storage (either 64GB or 256GB for the iPhone X) and then rely on iCloud or Dropbox for extra storage. Instead of paying the extra money for a phone with more storage, Samsung’s Galaxy S9 will be able to support micro SD cards for additional storage space. This is a much less expensive option and is one way Samsung may be able to sway customers away from Apple.

Apple iPhone X Hardware and Performance

S9 Fingerprint & Iris Scanning VS iPhone X Face Recognition

However, Samsung has not yet been able to one-up Apple when it comes to security. The Galaxy S9 will have fingerprint and iris scanning for unlocking the phones, but iPhone has now come out with a system to map the user’s face and recognize the owner of the phone without a fingerprint. This may or may not be a deal breaker for customers.

Camera and Image Quality

Possibly the biggest difference between the Galaxy S9 and the iPhone X is the camera. They both have 12megapixel duo lens cameras, including both a wide angle and a telephoto lens. On both phones, the lenses are mounted vertically, which is something new. One difference between the two phones is that the Samsung Galaxy S9 has an f1.5 aperture while the Apple iPhone X has an f1.8. This may not seem like much, but the wider aperture of the S9 lets in more light, which can make a big difference in photo quality.

Galaxy S9 vs iPhone X: Camera and Image Quality

Samsung is also taking photo quality a step farther even by upping the low-light performance. The Samsung S9 will capture 12 images each time you take a photo and then compare the exposures to create the best picture possible. This is comparable to the Apple iPhone X’s processing of high-dynamic range photos in which three images are taken at different levels of light exposure to make a better image. Both cameras are creating photos with better quality then ever before, but Samsung has seemed to put more emphasis on this than Apple.

Galaxy S9 VS iPhone X: Summary and Pricing

When it comes down to it, both phones are incredibly impressive and similar in many ways. They are also the most expensive phones that both, Samsung and Apple have created. The iPhone X starts at $999 while the Galaxy S9 comes in a little cheaper at $720 and $930 for the Plus.

Samsung Galaxy S9 VS Apple iPhone X

Customers will have to choose between some very small tradeoffs; ranging from design to camera quality. When the Samsung Galaxy S9 is officially released, performance will be compared more thoroughly, and soon we will be able to see what customers choose.

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Chrome VS Firefox: Which Browser is Best For Android?

Chrome VS Firefox: Which Browser is Best For Android?

As an Android user, when it comes to your Internet browser of choice, you are definitely tempted to stick to Google Chrome. After all, it’s the operating system’s default browser and overall – it does a pretty good job.

On the other side, an increasing number of users ditch it and start using Mozilla’s Firefox browser, another important player. But are they doing the right thing? Is Firefox for Android really a better option?

In this article we’ll be evaluating each browser separately to help you decide which browser is best for Android. Without further ado, let the ‘battle’ begin!

What’s Good About Google Chrome?

As mentioned above, Google Chrome is fast enough for all basic needs, not to mention that it’s fully integrated into any Android smartphone. Over the past years it hasn’t changed that much. But you know what they say; why fix it if it’s not broke?

Google Chrome For Android

The interface is simple to use and you have access to the Google services & Google Chrome app in a single tap. You can also switch between profiles in a few simple steps.

In terms of security, you have plenty of options and your privacy can also be protected. You have the option to go Incognito, turn off the tracking of searches and the URLs you visit.

Clicking on the three-dot icon on the upper right reveals the menu where you have all the options, just like on the desktop version: bookmarks, history, downloads and many more. You will also find the share button, where you can access all the above-mentioned options. Basically, since the browser is integrated with everything you have on the phone, you can share information with almost any social or email app you have.

Another great feature of Google Chrome is Data Saver. Through this, pages are compressed before you actually get to visit them, significantly reducing your bandwidth. And this is a big plus, especially if you don’t have an unlimited data plan.

Finally, let’s not forget about Chrome’s connection with other services. For example, simply typing something like “set a timer for 5 minutes” in the search bar will automatically trigger a widget, allowing you to set up a reminder in Google Now. Again, it’s just an example of the browser’s excellent integration with your Android apps.

What’s Bad About Google Chrome?

It was actually pretty difficult to find cons about the Google Chrome browser. But since nothing is perfect we managed to discover a few flaws. They’re not very numerous, but they’re present in the Google Chrome browser for Android users.

Let’s say that you want to open multiple Chrome windows and look through them. Well, this is actually a bit difficult, since it involves flicking your finger up or down and scroll through them. This takes a lot of space, not to mention that it can be difficult to locate the window you actually want to go to.

In order to avoid this, you need to navigate through all the windows. Otherwise, you risk passing right over the one you’re interested in. It’s not a major flaw, but it does become annoying sometimes.

The browser also has the bad habit of eating too much RAM. It doesn’t happen just on PCs, but also on smartphones. You will probably end up struggling to load pages or find it difficult to browse smoothly, especially if your device has less than 1GB of RAM.

Obviously, this can be tweaked by going a bit through the settings. But why not improve the Chrome Android browser, so users can avoid this? We’ll never know…

What’s Good About Firefox?

Now let’s focus on today’s second android browser – Mozilla Firefox. From the beginning we must make one thing clear: you can use it with your Google account as well. All you have to do is log in with it and the browser will remember your details. But is Firefox an overall better Android browser?

Mozilla Firefox For Android

Well, it does have a couple of pretty interesting perks, like the improved privacy and security tabs. We’re talking about the “Do Not Track” feature, which… well, doesn’t track any of your browsing activity. There’s also an option to clear all of your data every time you exit the browser, but we’re very curious if there are users who are going to remember doing this every time.

Firefox for Android receives bonus points for the accessibility options, which include scaling up or down the font of the pages you visit, zoom in (regardless of the page), or even use voice input for URL bar searches.

And, of course, let’s not forget about the Private Browsing, which is exactly the same thing as Google’s Incognito Mode.

What’s Bad About Firefox?

Unlike Chrome, Mozilla’s browser does not integrate as well with other apps. For example, if you ask for the weather, you will get a Google result without any additional details (like Chrome for Android shows). It sure does show a widget, but you just get basic information. But what if we instantly want to know if we should carry an umbrella tomorrow morning?

Also, if you type “set a timer for five minutes”, you will probably get a video result of a timer or something like that, not an actual timer on your smartphone, like Chrome does. Let’s just say that Google Chrome browser is way better at communicating with other Android apps and integrating some of their functionalities.

Chrome VS Firefox: Android Browser Wrap-up

Presuming that you’re waiting for the name of the Chrome vs Firefox Android browser winner, we have some bad news: the conclusion of this clash can be summarized in two words which don’t reveal that much – it depends.

Chrome VS Firefox: Which Browser is Best For Android?

It truly depends on what you will be using you Android mobile browser for. Chrome is perfectly integrated with other services and Android apps, especially Google-made ones. Not to mention that Google Chrome for Android gives rich results from Google search.

Firefox, on the other side does a better job at switching tabs, has slightly better privacy and security controls. It’s also better if you use other search engines than Google. Yes, there are people doing this, so don’t be surprised.

Personally, I would go with the Chrome for Android mobile browser. But I must admit that some of Firefox’s features are at least worth giving a shot.

Which mobile browser would you choose for your Android device and why? Let us know your thoughts, using the comments section below!

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