iPhone 4 photos

I took some pictures with the iPhone 4 today. In my limited testing, I noticed that the Camera app launches much faster than it did on my 3GS. The auto-focus also seems more responsive. Overall, the picture quality is impressive, especially for a camera on a phone.

One issue stood out today. While shooting the general store in the gallery below, I had trouble with exposure. The store is white and on a cloudless day it really washed out. Once I got some dark leaves from a nearby tree in the frame, it looked better.

I shot outdoors (a bright, largely cloudless day) and indoors under fluorescent and natural light. I also shot up close and far away. I’ve still got to test low light conditions, digital zoom and video, so another post is forthcoming.

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The Photos app has some nice new features under iOS 4. Places works much like it does in iPhoto ’09. The iPhone will geotag photos it shoots and place them on a Google map. A pin appears on a location with associated images. Tap the pin and a thumbnail appears representing those images; tap it to open a gallery of just those shots. Photos tagged with a different camera and synced to the iPhone will also appear on the map.


If you’ve synced photos with Faces data, the Faces icon will appear at the bottom of the main Photos screen. Tap any face to open an album of related images.

You can re-size images shared via email or SMS. For example, when emailing the photo below, I could select between four sizes, including the original. It’s quite nice when you’re on a slow network, have a limited data plan or want to send a shot to someone who can’t accept (or doesn’t require) large files.

The available sizes depend on the size of the original file as well how many images you’re trying to send.

Finally, you can set an image to serve as wallpaper for the home screen, lock screen or both. One disappointment is that  you can’t create new events, tag faces or move photos between albums with the iPhone. I was hoping this would be a part of iOS 4.

In short, the new camera is a nice update, though I’ve got to do more thorough testing. I like the updated Photos app too, even though I didn’t get some features I wanted. I’ll shoot and report more soon.