A Flash In the Pan?
The big trouble with Nokia having this press conference is that every single detail about the phone has been leaked before hand, in text, picture and video form. That has left very little for Stephen Elop to crow about when he took the stage. Sure, this is hardly new in the technology and mobile arena, but is making these events start to look rather redundant.
Still, on with the show. The Lumia 1020 offers a claimed 41-megapixel PureView sensor with brilliant day and night shots through sensor innovation and over-sampling. All this with optical image stabilization, xenon flash and Carl Zeiss wide-angle optics among the six different lenses.
The flash combined with all the technology and optics allows you to take low-light moving photos and capture a frame that Nokia demonstrates look blurred beyond recognition on a Samsung Galaxy S4 or an iPhone 5.
While it maximises the pixel count, for your main shot, it also simultaneously saves a 5MP over-sampled image to produce a version that can be sent to your Facebook page or on Twitter without swamping the networks with data.
An expansion gadget adds extra battery power, a better grip and a tripod mount. It also captures 1080p video capture with 4x zoom (6x zoom at 720p). It will be available on AT&T for $299 from 26 July, in yellow, black or white models.
Focus on Software
Since photographers who go for this device will want more than just point and shoot, Nokia will provide a Pro Camera app with the Lumia 1020 allowing manual adjustment of the flash, focus, ISO, white balance, shutter speed and exposure functions. So, among other tricks, you can now take timelapse exposures on a phone.
These are handled on the touchscreen, with the changes instantly affecting what you see on the display. With in-app editing functions, shots can be quickly tweaked for on-the-go post-production, and sent using the phone's features. Nokia has put up some of the impressive demo photos taken with the phone on its conversations blog.
For those wondering about the phone side of this device, it is basically a Nokia Lumia 920 with an upgrade to 2GB of RAM plus a 4.5-inch AMOLED display as seen on the Lumia 925 to view those images. The microphones have also been upgraded to capture quality audio in the places you're likely to take this phone.
An exclusive Hipstamatic app will also appear on the phone, with other developers using a special SDK to create software that can take advantage of the phone's features. Expect a battle between this and Samsung's recent 21x zoom Galaxy Camera device as review photographers scour the globe for the best shots.