How to photograph the moon on your phone

When a full moon rises, many people will pull out their mobile phones to try and taken an Instagram-worthy picture, but unfortunately the moon is really challenging to get a great photo of.

Two reasons: it is very far away and unless you have a telephoto lens (which makes the moon appear closer than it is) it will always appear as a very small glowing dot in the frame.

Secondly, shooting at night is really difficult. Professional cameras allow you to change your ISO or your sensitivity rating which means you can shoot in low light situations without losing the quality of the image… More here.

No iPhone can do this sadly, but maybe one day Apple will crack it. A shame considering some Android phones are doing OK in this area. The article above isn’t too helpful in terms of useful advice, but if you have any tips my ears are open.

The Best Photography Smartphones in 2021

Mobile photography is now one of the major battlegrounds for vendors trying to one-up each other. Thankfully, it’s not entirely about numbers, despite megapixel counts hitting new highs, it’s a lot about how effective software can be to do more with the available pixels. That can also depend on how you look at what the software gives you, especially relative to the varying modes phones now regularly offer.

We’re talking about an ever-evolving situation, where new phones may supplant old ones, while others trade places based on how new updates affected performance and output. Whether it’s pro mode features, software that does amazing things, or getting more for every dollar you spend, this roundup is a good place to start. We at PetaPixel will be updating it regularly to reflect a changing and shifting market to give you the insight you need to shoot what you want… More here.

An eye-opener to some iPhone owners perhaps and one which shows that there are many really good options out there.

Sony launches the Xperia PRO-I

The new smartphone, which can of course be used by ordinary consumers as well, is aimed at a very specific market that may well find this an essential part of their kit for outdoor photography and video recording.

With its amazing camera setup, optional productive accessories, and Sony’s advanced image processing – as well as 4K 120fps video recording – this announcement is sure to throw the cat amongst the pigeons just as Google and Apple were stepping up with their new high-end offerings going after a similar market… More here.

The line between phone camera and pro camera is getting thinner all of the time. The latter is the only one that will lose out in this battle.

/e/

Our mission: make technology that respects user privacy accessible to everyone.

It is time to regain control over our personal data on our phones!

We build mobile operating systems, apps and code that put users’ privacy first before profit.

Everyone deserves to maintain their privacy intact, especially on their smartphone! /e/ is a non-profit project, supported by an international core team of experienced entrepreneurs, developers and designers, and a vibrant growing community of contributors… More here. Thanks to Neil.

This is intriguing and something like this could be hugely popular one day.

The Commodore PET smartphone

It will only mark the attempt of a small company to buy an off-the-shelf smartphone from China and ship it with a white casing and a slightly weird looking take on the Commodore logo. To justify selling under the Commodore name, it will come with a pre-loaded emulator. One that could be installed on any Android phone. (Edit: It seems it will also include an Amiga emulator too, but everything I’ve said here about the C64 equally applies there too)… More here.

I tend to agree with Jonathan on this one and mainly because the PET name has been used with no real logic apart from the fact it is a well known name. However, this kind of branding of low level technology, and indeed other products such as jewellery and watches, is far from uncommon and happens a lot more than you may expect.

The Cosmo Communicator

Cosmo Communicator is the ultimate mobile device that fits in your pocket. It’s a great little computer with an excellent keyboard, a world-wide dual-SIM mobile phone and a fantastic camera – all in one!

Great for emails, messaging, editing documents, making calls and taking snaps. Running Android 9 OS as standard… More here. Thanks to Neil.

I was discussing this product with Neil the other day and we agreed that the asking price of £721.20 is way too much for what it is.

There is, however, a 30% discount currently available which helps a bit (£504.84), but alas I suspect that this particular style of device had had its day.

With the newer iPads offering the functionality the majority of people will likely need in a small package we are looking at this product based on the keyboard alone.

As magnificent as the keyboard is, and as much as I love seeing a Psion clone in 2021, I have to finally admit that those days are long gone.

Leica makes a phone iPhone owners will look twice at

The Leica Leitz Phone 1 is not an original phone as such because it is a rebadged Aquos R6. It is, however, an object that jumped out at me in an instant.

Just look at the image above. The Leica badge stands out of course, but to me it is the way the screen wraps into the case and the overall design of the phone. It feels timeless and ultimately a design that will still look good in ten years, just as some of the older Nokias do.

Some may say it is just a phone attached to the camera, or vice versa, but we are beyond that in 2021. A phone needs a camera and most phones are our only cameras so why not try to merge both and create something distinctive?

From one perspective at least the Leica Leitz Phone 1 is a surprise in a world of design iterations and it shows that phones can still appeal on aesthetics alone.

Should you charge your phone overnight?

What about your smartphone’s battery’s performance? It will decline over time, but you don’t want to speed up the process. Let’s end the debate on whether charging overnight will do that… More here.

I still charge mine overnight. Not sure I should, but it’s a hard habit to break.

The CARBON 1 MK II

The revolutionary carbon fiber smartphone. Where German engineering perfection and cutting-edge material innovation collide to unlock the future of mobile. The Carbon 1 sets the future standard of smartphone innovation. Taking a giant leap forward to deliver the incredible, thinner, lighter and more sustainable tech experiences of tomorrow… More here.

I am slightly wary of promos that show so much of the back of the phone rather than the front. A nice design, but a bit gimmicky?

The $2,800 Foldable ‘Mate X2’ Smartphone

The successor to 2019’s Mate X, the phone has received a radical redesign and now features a large uninterrupted 8-inch screen that folds inwards, rather than having the main display on the exterior, as with the original device.

The main screen uses a 180Hz display with an 8:7.1 aspect ratio, and when the phone is folded, a second 6.45-inch display (with a 12:9 aspect ratio) on the outside can be used, similar to Samsung’s Galaxy Fold design. Both displays feature a wide color gamut and an ultra-low reflection feature that bests the reflectance level of Apple’s Pro Display XDR, claims Huawei… More here.

I love one of the comments added to the article above- Yay another too thick/too big phone, that transforms into a too small tablet.